Bayern Munich manager Niko Kovac promises flexibility in his tactical approach for each match and is planning to use multiple systems.
Niko Kovac has finally begun training with a full squad (minus World Cup winner Corentin Tolisso) since returning from Bayern Munich’s preseason tour. Though a few players — such as Jerome Boateng and Arturo Vidal — may be sold before the summer transfer window closes, Kovac can now begin full preparation for the upcoming season.
Compared to Bayern’s past few coaches, Kovac represents an inexperienced, and perhaps even risk, appointment. But what the Croatian lacks in pedigree, he makes up for in ambition.
The 46-year-old is prepared to shift Bayern’s game slightly away from the possession-focused approach that has dominated the club for most of the past decade. At least, he recognizes that relying solely upon that method is no longer viable.
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Speaking recently with German media outlet n-tv, Kovac emphasized that his team must be more flexible this season. He wants his guys to be able to shift between a three-man defense and a four-man defense with ease, noting the importance of being able to swap between the two quickly.
He further added that he could line his men up in a 3-4-3 or 3-5-2 for some games. Thanks to the quality of the players in his squad, Kovac mentioned, he doesn’t have to worry about their ability to quickly adjust from one tactic to another.
Speaking of his star-studded squad, Kovac once again emphasized that he doesn’t want a team sheet with more than 22 outfield names on it.
“22 field players are the maximum, especially when you have 22 high caliber players. If everyone is fit, you still have to leave six players home.”
Kovac’s apparent desire to trim the Bayern squad lines up well with the club’s transfer business so far this summer. The club has only made one real signing in Alphonso Davies, but even he won’t join until January.
However, the Bavarians have a bit more active in getting rid of players. If recent reports are to be believed, they’ve already worked out a deal with Inter Milan to offload Arturo Vidal. Meanwhile, negotiations with Paris Saint-Germain over the services of Jerome Boateng are in advanced stages.
One player who is absolutely not for sale, though, is Robert Lewandowski. Speaking yesterday with Sport Bild, Kovac shared his excitement to work with the Pole, and even defended him against the heavy criticism he’s been receiving lately.
Lewandowski looks to be a big part of Kovac’s plans, and will be a big asset in allowing Bayern to switch between tactical approaches with ease. He’s an excellent, all-rounded striker who excels in various center-forward roles.