Before we get going with the second half of the season, it is time to lay down some thoughts on how this might all play out for Bayern Munich.
Follow us on this two-part journey, which will details the potential best — and worst — for how things will play out. In what is a case of, “Do you want the good news or the bad news first?”, we will give you the (potentially) bad news for the most pessimistic take on how things could play out...
1. There will be loans
- Frans Krätzig, Daniel Peretz, and Aleksandar Pavlović will move on for loan assignments. Unable to guarantee the trio any playing time, Bayern Munich will ship off each player and deplete the squad’s depth even more.
2. Thomas Tuchel is going to wear down his favored XI
- One thing that has been pretty consistent is Thomas Tuchel’s reluctance to rotate (even when quality players are available). Toward the end of the Hinrunde, Leroy Sané, Harry Kane, Alphonso Davies, Kingsley Coman, and Kim Min-jae all showed signs of battling against the high mileage they were accumulating. With Tuchel unable to control his urges, he will play some his stars right on to the injured list.
- In particular, Sané’s mental and physical workload will be too much to take on and he will slide into an extended funk.
3. Bayern Munich will flame out in the Champions League quarterfinals…again
- Last season, losing to eventual champion Manchester City was not exactly surprising, nor anything to be ashamed of…it was just the way that Bayern Munich lost its tie under Thomas Tuchel. Toothless offensively and sloppy defensively, Tuchel needs to push his squad to perform against the real global heavyweights.
- While undeniably strong this season, Bayern Munich has had some turbulent times on the pitch and also a manager that has not always inspired his troops. With Bayern Munich’s early exit, Tuchel’s seat will start to get very hot.
4. Bayern Munich will not win the Bundesliga
- It seems unfathomable that Bayern Munich will not eventually find its way to the top spot in the league, but this version of Bayer Leverkusen seems to be straying away from that Neverkusen moniker — unlike any version of the team we have seen since the early 2010/11,
- As Leverkusen remains strong, Bayern Munich’s sometimes stagnant attack and its sometimes positionally unaware defense will combine to cost the team a game against a lesser opponent — giving the boys from Bayern Leverkusen just enough breathing room to make Xabi Alonso a league champion.
5. Tuchel’s mishandling of some stars will start to work against him
- Aside of injuries, Tuchel has criticized some of his star players through the media and has also been the subject of various reports from unnamed sources indicating that he has issues with certain players. Without titles, this criticism will be met with brimstone and fire. He will not have the opportunity of managing some of those players again one way (he stays, they leave) or the other (he gets sacked) next season.
- In addition, Tuchel’s push to forge a leadership group helmed by Kane and Sané will be met with resistance internally and drive a wedge into the locker room.
6. Jamal Musiala will grow more unhappy
- Eventually, when desperation sets in, Tuchel will realize that Thomas Müller needs to be included in his starting XI for key matches. This will push Musiala out-wide, which will irritate the youngster, who is focused on playing as a true No. 10.
- With rumors already noncommittal on Musiala’s future with Bayern Munich, Tuchel will be torn between keeping his prized 20-year-old happy and maybe not winning as much — or playing him and putting some games at risk.
7. Kimmich and De Ligt will leave Bayern Munich next summer if Tuchel stays
- It seems inconceivable that two leaders and performers like Kimmich and De Ligt could move on, but Tuchel could be grinding away at the duo. Serge Gnabry and Leon Goretzka will also be in the mix to move on as Tuchel will favor other players over both during the Rückrunde.
8. Tuchel will get sacked
- A trophyless season and an unhappy locker room will be too much for the Bavarian brass to swallow and the board will — once again — decide that a change in leadership is needed.
- Who will be next? Xabi Alonso? Hansi Flick? That is hard to say, but rest assured, when the bosses decide to sack Tuchel, they will already have the “next man up” committed to the project.
9. Davies will leave for Real Madrid...or Manchester City
- As the dust settles, Bayern Munich will be looking to regroup and figure out how to best compete next season — only it will have to be without Davies.
- Davies has been toying with a move in his head since the sacking of former sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidžić. Now, with the team’s leadership structure upended again with Tuchel’s sacking, Davies will take this moment to jump to Real Madrid or Manchester City. The transfer will either reinvigorate his career...or keep it running on the same plateaued pathway that has alternately wowed and frustrated Bayern Munich fans for the past two seasons.
10. Marco Neppe will exit the club, too...but Max Eberl will take a board position
- Neppe’s role is still said to be important, but once another board member (we are predicting Max Eberl will be brought in during the second half of the season), it will just be another voice that that Neppe has to compete with to be heard.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of this miniseries, where things will be A LOT more positive...