After enduring a lot of criticism in the last two weeks, Bayern Munich came out all guns blazing against Bayer Leverkusen on Friday. The defending Bundesliga champions managed to deliver a convincing performance to claim their fourth league win of the season, the first since the 7-0 victory against Bochum on August 21.
Julian Nagelsmann got the exact response he wanted from his players after enduring a winless run of four games in the Bundesliga. There were numerous positives for Bayern on Friday, but here are our three biggest takeaways from a commanding performance at Allianz Arena.
Jamal Musiala is the new MVP of Bayern Munich
Most of the Bayern players fared well against Leverkusen, but no one was better than Jamal Musiala. The youngster was the best player on the pitch, as he consistently caused problems for Leverkusen’s defense. Musiala played a vital role in each of Bayern’s first three goals in the game.
For the first goal, he showed quick feet to beat the defender and find Leroy Sane in the box. He unleashed a venomous shot to score the second goal and managed to set up the goal for Sadio Mane. At the age of 19. Musiala is slowly becoming an undisputed starting XI quality player for Bayern. He is Die Roten’s top scorer this season with seven goals across all competitions. The German international shows great maturity in the final third and makes the right decision on almost every occasion. Musiala has slowly established himself as the most important player for Bayern this season.
A much more cohesive attacking unit for Bayern
In the last four league games, Bayern often looked lost in the final third. The combinations were not coming off, and often shots were wayward. The inefficiency in the final third made it very easy for the opposition to defend against Bayern.
However, this was not the case against Bayer Leverkusen. Bayern showed great composure and variety in their attacking moves. They were direct whenever there were chances to get straight at Leverkusen’s defense. The home side also showed patience when Leverkusen had most players behind the ball. The front four also showed great cohesion in terms of their movement and passing. The Bavarian faithful will be hoping that Die Roten uses this game as a benchmark when it comes to their cohesive play in the final third.
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Nagelsmann backing key players pays dividends
After the defeat away at Augsburg before the international break, Bayern Munich may have made several changes to the starting XI. However, Julian Nagelsmann decided to stick with the team and system that achieved very good results at the start of the season.
Joshua Kimmich stepped up against Leverkusen after intense criticism about his discipline in the number six role. Meanwhile, Marcel Sabitzer also repaid Nagelsmann’s faith by delivering quality performances. The German coach’s faith in the attacking quartet of Muller, Sane, Mane, and Musiala was also justified in the game, as all four ended up on the scoresheet.