Bayern Munich hosted Werder Bremen on Sunday knowing that nothing less than victory would have sufficed. Earlier in the day table-toppers Leverkusen scraped a last-gasp 2-3 win away at RB Leipzig, so the Bavarian team needed the three points to stay within touching distance.
Instead of coming away with the required victory, Bayern succumbed to a 1-0 defeat, courtesy of Mitchell Weiser’s 59th. minute wonder-strike. On an evening when the Bayern attack repeatedly misfired, the following three players managed to give distinctly positive performances.
With Noussair Mazraoui away with Morocco at the AFCON tournament, Konrad Laimer is Bayern’s first-choice right-back. His performance against Bremen was seldom lacking. In actuality, the Austrian midfielder delivered a good performance.
As the right-back, for the most part, he neutralized Bremen’s attack down the flank whilst also providing an outlet when the team was playing out from the back. Laimer also did a superb job supporting Kingsley Coman in attack down the flank albeit his crossing could have been better.
Mid-way through the second half, with Bayern pushing hard for the equalizer, Thomas Tuchel switched to a back-three with Laimer deployed on the right. As part of a back-three the Austrian international continued to be resolute in defence whilst supporting the attack at every opportunity.
With Thomas Tuchel again showing preference for Raphael Guerreiro over Leon Goretzka in midfield, it was refreshing to see the German international positively impacting proceedings after replacing Guerreiro for the last 25 minutes of regulation time.
Goretzka was effective in linking defence with attack and displayed a willingness to orchestrate play from deep. His box-to-box instincts were also on display as he twice made his presence felt in the opposition’s penalty area with headers that were not too far off target. For what it’s worth, throughout the course of the season, Goretzka continues to show character despite being unable to win over his coach.
Tel may not have found the back of the net on the evening, however his introduction in minute 65 was still justified. The defense didn’t suffer after he replaced Alphonso Davies and Die Roten’s attack looked more menacing thereafter.
The young French Attacker looked menacing on the left. Near the 90- minute mark he drew a save from Bremen’s custodian. Then in added-time he displayed some clever foot-work before firing just inches wide. Tel displayed the necessary hunger and drive despite just failing to deliver the desired results.
Considering that, on the day, two of the better performances came from substitutes this match provided more questions than answers.