News : 1: 1 against Union: FC Bayern have two days to lick wounds – sport
After the 1-1 draw against Union Berlin, you could see that it was not necessarily an ordinary Bundesliga game for FC Bayern from the fact that coach Hansi Flick spoke about Stani and Scotty at the press conference. “Stani,” said Flick, “made a very good game for me”. And one should “not forget Scotty either”.
Josip Stanisic, 21, central defender of the second team in the third division, made his Bundesliga debut in the starting line-up as a left-back. Christopher Scott, 18, attacking midfielder of the third division team, was the second debutant to come on – for Tiago Dantas, 20, on loan from Benfica Lisbon, who played for the second time, for the first time from the start. Flick praised all the boys for their commitment. And he said: “Of course we already had our eyes on Tuesday today, you could see that.”
The Munich coach was quite annoyed, he shouted “Man!” When the guests scored the equalizer in the 85th minute after a controversial throw-in through a goal by Marcus Ingvartsen, who was also only 18 years old , substitute Munich defensive player Tanguy Nianzou did not look so good. But despite the draw, Bayern still have a comfortable five-point lead in the Bundesliga, and so Flick only had an eye on Tuesday after the final whistle: the second leg in the Champions League quarter-finals at Paris Saint-Germain, in which Bayern have to make up the 2: 3 from the first leg. The most important result on Saturday was the hope that there weren’t any more injuries. “Licking wounds”, “gathering strength”, “regenerating well”, “charging the battery”, that’s what matters now, said Flick.
Nine players were injured or suspended, and Flick initially spared David Alaba, Leroy Sané and Benjamin Pavard in the starting line-up. After half an hour, however, worried glances were directed from the Munich bench to the field: winger Kingsley Coman sat on the floor, had himself examined after a blow on the head of the fibula and replaced at half time. However, that was already planned in advance, said Flick. He thinks “everything is not that bad”, including the knee problems of substitute defender Jérôme Boateng. And so the still decimated squad might be a bit bigger again on Tuesday. With defender Lucas Hernández (bruised rib) there is still hope for a mission as with Leon Goretzka, who is missing with muscular problems, although more caution is required when the German national player is injured, as Flick said.
Flick is “the right coach for us” and the conflict with Salihamidzic is “unnecessary,” says goalkeeper Neuer
Should Goretzka fail, a midfielder advertised his commitment on Saturday, albeit for a much more offensive role: Jamal Musiala, 18, who has also been a German national player since March, was surprisingly sovereign among the many boys in the Munich team and was a winger on the involved in the most dangerous actions and scored in the 68th minute with his fourth goal of the season to make it 1-0 after a lightning-fast hook to his opponent in the Berlin penalty area. Flick called it “legitimate” that Musiala had to leave the field shortly afterwards with calf cramps.
Before the opening goal, Bayern had checked the game without completely convincing. Joshua Kimmich, for example, played unusually incorrectly. And the young players like the 1.68 meter tall Dantas hinted at their talent, but they didn’t always have as difficult as it would have been expected. Because the Berliners almost didn’t dare to do enough. His team acted “unsatisfactorily” with the ball, said Union coach Urs Fischer, who was of course still happy about “a great result for us”. He knew that his team had met FC Bayern at a very good time – and not just because of the many injuries and the upcoming Champions League game.
In all interviews before and after the game, all protagonists were of course asked about the topic that threatens to displace everything sporting about the German record champions every day: the conflict between Flick and sports director Hasan Salihamidzic, the possible departure of the coach after the season despite his contract until 2023 doesn’t make it any less likely. The topic is “not as big as you can imagine” in the team, said captain Manuel Neuer. “Nevertheless, all things that are beating down on us from the outside are of course not necessary.” Flick is “the right coach for us”.
Flick had held a five-minute monologue in the press conference before the game on Friday, in which he said, among other things, that the quality of the squad was better last season than this one. And he had announced that he would only answer questions about his future with “next question”. He kept this promise on Saturday – several times. Does the topic influence the team? “No, I don’t have that feeling,” said Flick. At the latest after the game in Paris on Tuesday, he should be addressed again.