Year one under Niko Kovač at Bayern Munich has been underway and things are looking up. In the Bundesliga the Bavarians have four wins from four games, rolling in the DFB Pokal, and handled Benfica in the first match day of the UCL. This perfect start to the year seems all according to plan for the new manager.
It’s still early in the campaign but there will be some hurdles that Kovač will have to deal with. Corentin Tolisso tore his ACL on match day 3, and Rafinha the Brazilian work horse has picked up an injury as well. Tolisso’s injury is a huge loss, however I believe with the return of Renato Sanches and the signing of Leon Goretzka the midfield should be tidy and strength in depth will prevail. Rafinha’s injury is a little more worrisome because Joshua Kimmich already plays so much, and does so much from the back. The same can be said for David Alaba. With Juan Bernats departure to PSG, one injury to either of the fullbacks could spell trouble for Bayern. But injuries is a problem Bayern is not all that new to and has faced it well before.
Bayern’s style under Kovač has been what all bavarians wanted. It’s attacking, it’s pretty football, and most importantly to most Bayern fans, we are seeing a resurgence of Thomas Müller. Kovač has employed Müller in a way that will allow him to do what he does best, score goals, or create, he’s not playing as a winger, but we are actually seeing him inside the box which is where we all know he is most lethal. With a reborn Thomas Müller, and his healthy best friend James Rodriguez, I think we can expect more fireworks from the boys down in Bavaria.
Bayern came under a lot of scrutiny when Kovač was announced. But so far this campaign he is silencing doubters. It’s only a matter of time before he has to face some adversity though, and only then will we be able to see what he is made of, because as we all know, an underperforming Bayern can easily turn into trial by fire for the manager.
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