An inspiring performance from Thomas Muller and a Leroy Sane cameo helped Bayern Munich get back to winning ways against Freiburg.
Bayern Munich extended their lead at the top of the Bundesliga table to four points following a narrow 2-1 victory over SC Freiburg at the Allianz Arena on Sunday.
The Bavarians had a more compact and solid start to the game, barely allowing the opposition to score that early goal. They provided a lot of threat in the opposition half as well, creating some excellent chances. One brilliant passage of play saw Robert Lewandowski find the early breakthrough, with Thomas Muller providing the assist.
The game opened up a bit more in the second half which saw SC Freiburg showing more attacking intent. However, the Breisgau outfit were far from clinical in the final third as Bayern continued to pile the pressure. It wasn’t until the 62nd minute when SCF found the equaliser, thanks to a brilliant move by Christian Streich that saw him introduce three players including the scorer Nils Petersen.
The hosts were quick to respond, however, restoring their lead in the 74th minute through Muller. Freiburg were given a late opportunity to equalise once again but Petersen’s effort hit the bar. And here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the Bayern Munich players in their narrow win over the in-form SCF this weekend.
Manuel Neuer: 6/10
Manuel Neuer did a fantastic job of making two back-to-back saves during the corner that led to the Freiburg equaliser. Unfortunately, the ball had crossed the line on both occasions, thus leading to yet another failed clean sheet for the Bayern Munich goalkeeper. He also got lucky late in the game when Petersen’s effort hit the woodwork.
Benjamin Pavard: 7.5/10
Benjamin Pavard produced a slightly better performance than what we have witnessed this season. The right-back balanced his game well, going forward only when it was necessary. He kept Vincenzo Grifo quiet for the most part of the game as well, though the Frenchman still has room for improvement.
Jerome Boateng: 7.5/10
Jerome Boateng wasn’t particularly flawless upon his return to the starting lineup. However, his experience and leadership, combined with an excellent sense of positioning were key in denying Freiburg the space to make things happen in the final third. The veteran centre-back also fared well in terms of aerial and physical duels.
David Alaba: 7.5/10
David Alaba’s return to central defence certainly improved Bayern Munich this weekend. The Austrian international looked solid for the most part of the game and his pace was useful when dealing with the Freiburg counter-attacks.
Alphonso Davies: 8/10
Alphonso Davies wasn’t particularly extraordinary against Freiburg despite his occasional forays down the flanks. The left-back certainly looked more comfortable in possession, often looking to take on the opposition. Still has room for improvement, but a step in the right direction nonetheless, especially after a long spell on the sidelines.
Alphonso Davies 🆚 Freiburg:
👉 81 touches
👉 58/58 passes
👉 2 key passes
👉 5/6 dribbles
👉 2 tackles
👉 9/11 duels won
— Peter Galindo (@GalindoPW) January 17, 2021
Joshua Kimmich: 7.5/10
Joshua Kimmich had his difficulties imposing his authority in the middle of the park, largely due to the early introduction of the abrasive Amir Abrashi. Yet, the Bayern Munich midfielder looked comfortable in possession, threading passes all around the park before making way for Corentin Tolisso during the final phase of the game.
Leon Goretzka: 7.5/10
Leon Goretzka showed a lot of intent going forward, linking up well with attackers in the final third. He also tested the goalkeeper twice, one of which was a vicious effort from range. A good performance from the former Schalke midfielder, who quickly needs to return to his best form.
Serge Gnabry: 7.5/10
Serge Gnabry had an excellent start to the game, notably playing a vital role in the build-up to Lewandowski’s early goal. Unfortunately, his night was cut short by an injury as he was subbed off around the half-hour mark.
Thomas Muller: 8.5/10
Thomas Muller was by far the best player for Bayern Munich in this fixture. The German kickstarted proceedings with a delightful assist for Lewandowski. It was followed by a series of intelligent movements across the final third. He even tested the goalkeeper multiple times and was eventually rewarded with a late goal, which proved to be the winner for FC Bayern.
Thomas Muller with a perfectly weighted first-time pass for his pal Robert Lewandowski 😍 pic.twitter.com/CW9TOJViaH
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 17, 2021
Kingsley Coman: 7.5/10
Kingsley Coman may have hoped for a more eventful game as most of Bayern Munich’s efforts were not exactly threatening. Nonetheless, the winger enjoyed a decent evening on the flanks, often outmuscling and outclassing Lukas Kubler. His crosses caused quite a lot of problems for the Freiburg defenders.
Robert Lewandowski: 7/10
Robert Lewandowski’s sharp finish was important in handing Bayern Munich an early headstart in this game. However, it is fair to say that the Pole was defended well by the Freiburg defenders, who often doubled up on him. A bit unlucky not to find the second goal, but the win should make him a happy customer.
Leroy Sane: 8/10
Leroy Sane replaced the injured Gnabry around the half-hour mark and made quite an impact on the proceedings. The former Manchester City winger was simply a menace on the flanks. His quick-feet and silky movements made him unplayable, at times, with the attacker also playing a key role in the build-up to Muller’s winner.
Leroy Sane completed all of his 7 attempted Dribblings today. Now stands at 12 scorers after 20 matches played for his new club. His confidence is growing & growing, not need to worry about him. pic.twitter.com/O2GRbGqdxJ
— Complaxes (@Complaxes) January 17, 2021
Corentin Tolisso: N/A
Tolisso came on for Kimmich during the final phase of the game and notably had one effort on goal that was saved by Florian Muller. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Jamal Musiala: N/A
A late replacement for Coman, who was taken off in light of Bayern Munich’s upcoming midweek game against FC Augsburg. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Javi Martinez: N/A
A late replacement for Goretzka. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting: N/A
A late replacement for Muller. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.