The last few weeks have seen Bayern Munich struggle in the final third. The German team has been creating chances against teams, but poor finishing has led them down. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting has struggled with injuries and form during Ruckrunde. The Cameroon international has spent most of April on the sidelines due to injuries.
In the absence of Choupo-Moting, Bayern has used Sadio Mane and Serge Gnabry in the number nine role. Mane did score against Mainz, but largely the use of a false nine has not helped Die Roten to get that necessary cutting edge in the final third.
Apart from Choupo-Moting, Mathys Tel is the other striker in the squad. The young French forward was on the sidelines for a couple of weeks after the international break in March. Since returning from injury, Thomas Tuchel has not used Tel consistently, which has definitely raised eyebrows due to the team’s struggle for goals.
While talking to the media (via iMiaSanMia) on Friday, Thomas Tuchel explained the reasons behind the lack of starts for Mathys Tel. The German coach doesn’t want to throw the teenager throw in pressure situations and give him time to develop at a steady pace. Tuchel is hoping to see patience from fans regarding Tel getting a place in the starting XI.
"“There are a few things, its just not age. Age is relatively uninteresting. It is a question of whether you are doing him a favour by starting and putting him under pressure of being a saviour. There has to be a continuous path into the starting XI. From the last impressions, I am not sure he will walk straight into starting XI. But maybe I will change my opinion on Sunday.”"
Bayern considers Tel to be part of their long-term plans. They managed to beat competition from several clubs in Europe to get Tel for a significant fee last season. In limited appearances this season, the French forward has managed to show why Bayern was so keen on paying a big fee for him.
The 18-year-old forward has scored five goals for Die Roten in just over 500 minutes of game time this season. He has the pace and trickery to cause havoc in the final third but still has a long way to go in terms of becoming a complete forward.
Tuchel’s management of Tel is understandable since throwing a young player in the deep end at a big club can be counterproductive for the youngster. Tel’s development needs to be managed carefully to make sure he realises his potential in Bavaria.
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A year of training with some of the best players in Europe would have helped Tel. The next step for him is to get a considerable amount of playing time at the senior level. Since Bayern is looking to sign a prolific number nine in the summer, Tel will be better served by going out on loan for next season. Bayern will reportedly weigh up a loan move for the French forward, but a final decision is yet to be made.