“LEIPZIG” PLAYED EQUALLY WITH THE FAVORITE
Unfortunately, the Bundesliga doesn’t get our attention that often. This mostly happens when Borussia Dortmund or Leipzig try to force a fight on Bayern. But each of those attempts deserves to be discussed. On Friday (it really is an unusual time for the central match of the tour, if not for the whole circle!) The “bulls” received the team of Julian Nagelsmann, the coach who brought them to the top flight.
The first part did not go well for the teams. Bayern had 63 per cent of the ball and scored (Eric Choupo-Moting closed off a Serge Gnabry cross) but only had two shots (one on target). But the hosts also have nothing to brag about: three hits with a total xG of 0.14 (versus 0.38).
Photo source: FC Bayern
Leipzig spent the second half much more accentuated and came back naturally (7-5 in shots, xG 0.62-0.29) thanks to the speed of defender Marcel Halstenberg, in the fall of goalkeeper Dominik Soboslai, who closed the discount. In the end, each team was able to bag three points, but Konrad Laimer, who was in front of the goal, fired over the crossbar, and Thomas Muller, who shot from the penalty line, almost hit the corner. closest.
As a result, the teams parted ways amicably and Freiburg had a chance to close the gap to the Munich superclub to two points. To do this, they will need to win in Wolfsburg tonight. But Leipzig is still six points behind Bayern.
SOMMER’S DEBUT WITH BAYERN
The hopes of the champion’s pursuers were placed on the legendary goalkeeper Manuel Neuer skiing without success and retiring before the end of the season. The Bavarians considered various replacement options, the most preferable for the competitors being the return of Alexander Nübel on loan to Monaco.
But the worst happened: Borussia Mönchengladbach, who had clung on to Jan Sommer for a long time, found out that Bayern were ready to invite Kasper Schmeichel from Nice and faltered, giving up his long-term guard for €8m.
To understand how great the Swiss is, just remember that he holds the Bundesliga record for the number of saves in one game: 19! Naturally, in the match with Bayern, and last fall. That is, Sommer was not only in order once, but now he is the best. His debut came in the match against Leipzig.
Photo source: FC Bayern
Before the game, Sommer gave five to each of the partners separately, as if trying to make himself at home here. And Nagelsmann said before the game that the goalkeeper “doesn’t have to be nervous.” In his immediate duties, he didn’t really blunder, rejecting what was possible, but he played the pass somewhat worse than Neuer, displaying only 84 percent accuracy (31 of 37 accurate passes).
Firstly, in the game below, he is not as comfortable as in the tape (personally, this reminds me of Ruslan Nigmatullina). Secondly, partners carried him quite regularly, even under pressure, which is not as usual for him as it is for Neuer himself. Thirdly, the Bavarians tried to go on the attack through him, luring the opponent for the subsequent throw forward into the unloaded space, and the average pass from him is not ideal.
It’s also funny that Sommer cosplayed as Neuer. Neuer’s hand raised after conceding goals has long become not only a meme, but also a kind of symbol of this goalkeeper. He picks it up, as if he were signaling a violation of the rules, not only in contentious episodes (potential foul or offside), but even when he misses with a shot from distance. This is the reflection of him. So Sommer in Leipzig also raised his hand immediately after Halstenberg’s goal. True, his reason was more serious. The hosts took the ball from Joshua Kimmich and pushed it into their own penalty area.
FEARS FOR PSG
Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic gave a diagnosis just after the game, admitting that the team lacked precision, aggressiveness and intensity. “We’ll probably have to get in shape through the games,” he suggested. After all, this game was the first for the team after a World Cup break. But in the next 16 days, four more meetings await him: with Cologne, Eintracht, Mainz (in the Cup) and Wolfsburg. And on February 14 (three weeks later) the match in Paris in the Champions League.
At the same time, Bayern were in shock before the season resumed. In addition to Neuer, Luca Hernández retired before the end of the season, the timing of Nassair Mazraoui’s return is unknown and Sadio Mane disappeared completely from the radar after he was unable to compete in the World Cup due to injury. Also, the form of the German footballers who failed in Qatar is questionable. Could Kimmich’s same scoring error be due to a lengthy downtime after a disappointingly quick exit from the World Cup?
Photo source: FC Bayern
The willingness to play at the base of Thomas Muller is also in doubt. In attack, Nagelsmann prefers Eric Choupo-Moting, while the attacking midfield trio is Serge Gnabry, Jamal Musiala and Leroy Sane. Muller has the professionalism to work comfortably, accepting that he is now only the fifth candidate to start a game, but how long can he endure the change in status?