Where has it gone wrong for Thomas Tuchel at Bayern Munich?

What has gone wrong with Thomas Tuchel and Bayern Munich? A closer look at the manager's missteps and struggles of the team.

Bayern Munich head coach Thomas Tuchel disappointed after his team's defeat against Lazio in the Champions League.
Bayern Munich head coach Thomas Tuchel disappointed after his team's defeat against Lazio in the Champions League. / Ivan Romano/GettyImages
1 of 5

When the Bayern Munich hierarchy decided to move on from Julian Nagelsmann in March of last year, the reasoning was that the club's performances were seen as inconsistent. The team sat just one point behind Dortmund in the Bundesliga title race and was fresh off a round of 16 victory over PSG with a performance in Paris that was one of Nagelsmann's best. However, the board felt a change was needed.

Within hours the decision was made to bring in an experienced manager with a winning pedigree that could oversee the rebuild of the Bayern Munich squad. Up steps Thomas Tuchel who was sacked by Chelsea in September 2022, but had led the club to a Champions League title in 2021. The German manager has been applauded for his tactical work with the sides he has coached, and was seen as the long-term manager of Germany's biggest club,

Tuchel made an instant mark on his new squad with a convincing 4-2 win over his old club Dortmund that pushed Bayern Munich to the top of the Bundesliga table. However, his second match would see Bayern eliminated from the DFB Pokal to Freiburg at home. The cup failures would continue as the side would be eliminated from the Champions League by eventual champions Manchester City. After falling behind Dortmund in the Bundesliga following a 3-1 loss at the Allianz Arena to RB Leipzig, Tuchel's men would lift the Meisterschale on the last day thanks to a late Jamal Musiala goal in Koln and Dortmund's failure to beat Mainz at Signal Iduna Park.

Fast forward to the current season and Bayern Munich again sit second in the Bundesliga, five points behind Leverkusen. Having already been eliminated from the DFB Pokal by 3. Bundesliga side FC Saarbrucken, a loss away to Lazio in the Champions League round of 16 has Die Roten in danger of going trophyless this season.

While results on the field have been mixed for Thomas Tuchel at Bayern, things have been anything but stable behind the scenes at the club. Oliver Kahn and Hasan Salihamidzic were sacked before the end of the 22/23 season, and Bayern entered the summer transfer period without a clear vision of where the club was headed. CEO Jan-Christian Dreesen oversaw much of the transfer window until Christoph Freund joined as sporting director at the start of September.

However, the recent performances (1-0 loss to Werder Bremen; 3-0 loss to Leverkusen; 1-0 loss to Lazio) have left Bayern in a state that many have not experienced. Remember this is a club that has won the last 11 Bundesliga titles. As fans look on with frustration, it begs the question, what has gone wrong? What missteps has Thomas Tuchel taken to find Bayern Munich on the verge of their first trophy-less season since the 2011/12 campaign?