Curious Case of Leroy Sane at Bayern Munich

Leroy Sane has fallen into the vicious loop of inconsistency at Bayern Munich as he is enduring a difficult Ruckrunde after a scintillating first half of the season.
Bayern Munich forward Leroy Sane has struggled for form during Ruckrunde.
Bayern Munich forward Leroy Sane has struggled for form during Ruckrunde. / Alex Grimm/GettyImages

Back in the summer of 2019, whilst Bayern Munich was working on a deal to sign Leroy Sane from Manchester City, German football legend Lothar Matthaus had given the move his full backing. The 1990 World Cup-winning captain and former Bayern midfielder admitted that Leroy Sane could be ‘the new face’ of Die Roten.

Just a few weeks later, Sane would suffer a serious knee injury while playing for Man City against Liverpool in the FA Community Shield. The knee injury effectively delayed the transfer by a year as Die Roten needed to be sure that the young German international had made a full recovery before going all out for his signature. With the move for Sane on hold, Bayern completed the 2019/20 season as treble winners for the second time in the club’s history as they strengthened the attack by signing Philippe Coutinho and Ivan Perisic on loan deals.

Sane eventually arrived in Munich with much fanfare for a fee close to €49 million plus add-ons, during the summer of 2020, just ahead of the start of the 2020/21 season. In his debut season with the Bavarian side, Sane was largely underwhelming. He failed to reach double-figures in either goals or assists in the Bundesliga. There were concerns that he wasn’t the same player following the knee injury.

Not much changed throughout the following two seasons. Sane occasionally showed flashes of brilliance during his first three seasons at Bayern, but by and large, he had failed to be a key performer in the big games.

Fast forward to the current 2023/24 Bundesliga season and Leroy Sane was off to an impressive start. He and Harry Kane immediately struck up a devastating partnership in the final third. Harry Kane was stealing most of the headlines with his ruthless finishing during the first half of the season, but Sane was providing a lot of assists while consistently chipping in with goals. Throughout most of Hindrunde, the German attacker was in fine form.

Unfortunately, nearing the end of Hindrunde Sane had a dip in form which has continued throughout Ruckrunde. To date he has failed to score for Bayern during Ruckrunde. Along with Bayer Leverkusen’s Alex Grimaldo, Sane tops the Bundesliga assists chart with eleven to his name. However, only two of those assists were registered in 2024.

As fate would have it, Sane is not with the German national team during the current international break. He is currently serving a three-match international ban for an infringement committed in a match against Austria in November. This international break may benefit Bayern and Sane. Hopefully, the player can use the time off to fully recover from a pesky groin injury that has been causing him problems on and off for a few months.

Ahead of next season, Bayern are expected to make big changes to the squad to properly challenge for trophies in all competitions. At the end of this season, Sane will be entering the final 12 months of his contract with Bayern. Recent reports suggest that the club and player are both open to a contract extension. However, if Sane doesn’t return to sustained form after the international break, a contract extension may not be in the best interests of the club.