In the first Bundesliga game after Robert Lewandowski left, FC Bayern Munich shone with a flexible offensive. After the 6-1 win against Eintracht Frankfurt, there was a lot of praise but also warnings.
Around 50,000 spectators came to the Camp Nou on Friday afternoon to admire FC Bayern Munich’s past: Robert Lewandowski was introduced with great fanfare as a newcomer to FC Barcelona.
The 33-year-old forward showed a few tricks, his new fans chanted him and Barca president Joan Laporta spoke of a “historic day”.
In a way, this Friday was also a historic day for Lewandowski’s former club. In the evening, FC Bayern started a Bundesliga season in front of a similarly large crowd in Frankfurt for the first time in nine years without their top scorer – and for the first time since they were promoted to the Bundesliga in 1965 without a classic center forward with serious regular place potential.
Will that work? First interim conclusion: This could be something! FC Bayern beat Europa League winners Eintracht Frankfurt 6-1 and was 5-0 at half-time.
FC Bayern Munich: The flexible offensive shines
The proclaimed premise of spreading Lewandowski’s goals (50 last season) over several shoulders worked perfectly: apart from Müller, all offensive players scored – although he possibly had the greatest chance of all, but failed miserably in the 24th minute.
Not only because of Müller’s missed shot, FC Bayern could have led more than 5-0 after a splendid first half. Sports director Hasan Salihamidzic saw a “very, very, very, very, very, very, very good game” by his team, coach Julian Nagelsmann an “incredibly good game with great energy”.
The opponent was also impressed. Frankfurt coach Oliver Glasner raved about Munich’s “one-touch football”, at times it was just “slap-slap-slap”. Captain Sebastian Rode, who was replaced at half-time, felt “overwhelmed and overwhelmed”: “Most of these players can do over 34.35 km/h. Together with their technical quality, that’s difficult to defend. Lewy may be gone, but the flexibility in the storm , this castling is a completely different quality.”
Thomas Müller gave it a “good feeling that our concept and the changes are working well so far. The skepticism that there was logically about the offensive in advance has been pushed into the background with eleven goals in two games.” And in the two games it was against the reigning DFB Cup and Europa League winners.
At the same time, FC Bayern was up against two grateful opponents in its current situation. Both played courageously in their own stadium and avoided wall tactics. In Frankfurt, FC Bayern had large spaces behind the opposing defensive line. Spaces that don’t need a classic centre-forward. Spaces that accommodate nimble offensive players like Müller, Musiala, Gnabry or Mane.
New signing Mane was asked after the game on the fence in front of the Munich fan block to direct the celebrations via megaphone. And Müller was asked whether FC Bayern’s performance in the first half was perfect.
“There is no such thing as perfection in football,” he said. “Except maybe we’re looking at videos from Barcelona around 2009.” So once it was still about Lewandowski’s new club – which, by the way, played differently than in the future without a classic center forward in the center, but with the wrong nine called Lionel Messi.