Bayern Munich lost all hopes for the 2011-2012 German Bundesliga title yesterday after a 0-2 defeat at the BayArena against Bayer Leverkusen. Bayern Munich fans cannot feel anything but disappointment on what can be described as an unlucky turn of events. The game which put us 7 points behind Bundesliga leaders Dortmund (and quite possibly on the table’s third place depending on Borussia Mönchengladbach’s results today) will be analyzed over and over again. Fingers will be pointed, drastic and not so drastic cries for change will be called for.
Whatever courses of action the Club takes this point onward, if any, no one can deny our need to recover, sober up, and look at our targets ahead. We have a difficult match against FC Basel to settle scores in the UEFA Champions League and a tough trip to Gladbach in the Pokal’s semifinals. Those are serious challenges on our road to Munich and Berlin respectively.
Now is not the time to down our players, nor is it the time to fight with a fellow fan or shout at a defender during a match for that matter. We are down, we are hurt; sensibilities abound.
It is also clear something has to change. We cannot afford to choose the path of the most efficient roster in the league with targets nothing short of three cups only to lose games when two of our starting players get injured. Bayern Munich has one of the best lineups in the world; backed up by a bench full of huge question marks.
This is the first thing that needs to change coming next summer.
I am not going to be discussing player performances or lineups besides just one observation. Louis van Gaal twicked the formation around a resurgent Gomez and it paid off handsomely; at least for Gomez. Heynckes inherited this formation and made no changes as far as our main striker is concerned. We have come to a point where Gomez is either not getting the chances he needs or he isn’t delivering on the ones he gets; clear or otherwise. Whatever your view on the matter is, our adversaries have found a way to cut him out, either by off-siding him, mounting and secret-service worthy row of bodyguard defenders or simply cutting his flow of supply from the wingers and or CAM (some of the most notable tap-in goals have come after Robben’s patent worthy meteoroids which Bayern fans still haven’t witness this year.)
Finally, Mario Gomez is not the type of player that will usually travel south, help on the buildup and deliver an alternative performance as a false central attacking midfielder of sorts. That to me is his biggest weakness that just happens to be his biggest strength. He has delivered for the team on uncountable occasions just by being there at the right place at the right time. There being the penalty area.
First things first then. Mario hasn’t scored lately, we have been losing quite a bit in the same time frame so that gives you the first clue as to what is going on. So we either change the striker, figure out how to motivate him (not changing him during a match would be a good start) or pair him with someone else up front. Whatever your pick is, let us just hope coach and staff make the right decision and for God’s sake, please ink that renewal with the striker.
I hope most fans have recovered from the disappointing result yesterday. I won’t say performance because I still think some of our players had their best game in a long time, most notably Robben with a few good assists and Neuer with a couple of incredible saves. If you haven’t recouped, hang in there; you are not the only one hurting. This guy inside all Bayern fans is feeling the same too.
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