3 insights from Bayern Munich’s 1-1 draw against Union Berlin

It can be said that Bayern Munich got the overall play-worthy result with a 1-1 draw with Union Berlin. Without further ado, here are the observations:

The first 60 minutes were decided by Thomas Müller’s absence.

For more than a decade, Thomas Müller has combined Bayern Munich’s speed and talent for attacking. He hasn’t changed much since he came out. But his absence from the start meant Bayern Munich became a team of fast-paced attackers with no connectors. Missing a necessary small connecting pass in his final third, Bayern paid the price.

Union very cleverly (or not so cleverly), isolating their fastest players (Alphonso Davies and Kingsley Coman) on either side, limiting Bayern’s chances. They cut Bayern’s streak nicely by intercepting a pass in the final third. Thomas Müller is a player who can find a pass in those situations. His absence from the beginning was scratching his head—he certainly needs rest. Head his coach Julian Nagelsmann may have chosen to rest him in the wrong game.

Bayern need to focus more on defense

Bayern’s best players today were primarily defensive. I thought both Benjamin Pavard and Matthijs de Ligt made good defensive shifts. Still, falling asleep once or twice is enough to drop a point. It wasn’t. Without Jordan Pefok today, Bayern’s job would have been easier, but they couldn’t have prevented Becker’s goal.

This kind of error happens sometimes, and it’s understandable. However, Dayot Upamecano shouldn’t have been beaten one-on-one with Jamie Lewelling in the second half. On another day, it translates into a goal, especially when that player is Marcus Thuram.

Our defense has improved overall. I need a little more awareness.

need a little more flexibility

Asking for more than that is odd in a flexible team. But against a team like Union, Bayern have more flexibility in their tactics. I thought this was the perfect game to put Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and Matthijs de Ligt up front for 10 minutes and see what happens.

Bayern failed to score three points against Gladbach as Jan Sommer produced a historic goalkeeping performance. Bayern didn’t win today because they didn’t create enough chances for attention.

It was also a factor that the referee did not issue a yellow card, allowing the Union to produce a number of small but noticeable fouls. But many teams will, and in fact Inter may try it in their midweek Champions League match after seeing how things are today.

Overall, the good feeling from the beginning of the season remains. Problems are starting to arise and Julian Nagelsmann needs to fix them.

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As always, thanks for all the support!

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