Debutant Dayot Upamecano endured a difficult time as Borussia Monchengladbach held Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw.
Bayern Munich kick-started their 2021/22 Bundesliga campaign with a 1-1 draw with Borussia Monchengladbach on Friday night. It was an entertaining curtain-raiser that witnessed two new coaches trying to get their team off to a positive start to the season but ultimately had to share the spoils.
Bayern were certainly the more dominant team for the most part of the game, but it was Gladbach who were the better side in the early stages. Their quick pressing and smart rotation of passes got the better of the vulnerable opposition backline, with Alassane Plea eventually scoring the opener in the 10th minute.
The hosts’ dominance did not last long as Bayern were soon able to find a way to play through the press. They created numerous opportunities after the half-hour mark and as such, the 42nd minute equaliser from Robert Lewandowski was not a surprising one at all.
The Foals did well to show more ambition in the second half, but it was the visitors were the better side nonetheless. However, their poor finishing saw them fail to find the winner and the Bavarians were certainly lucky to get away with two late penalty calls from Gladbach, who themselves missed a couple of goalmouth opportunities.
At the end of the day, both sides drew level at 1-1, much to the delight of the home supporters. They will take massive pride in their team’s display, whereas the situation gets even though for Nagelsmann as he starts Bayern Munich career with a draw.
Manuel Neuer: 7/10
It was slightly bizarre to see Manuel Neuer conceding the first goal in this new Bundesliga campaign. He was beaten quite easily by Plea as well, but the veteran did well to redeem himself. He was much more alert to the danger, always getting rid of the long balls from Gladbach and making a couple of important saves, including the one to deny Lars Stindl in the second half.
Josip Stanisic: 7.5/10
Josip Stanisic was one of the few positives for Bayern in this game. The youngster, filling in for the injured Benjamin Pavard at right-back, made quite an impression with his smart positioning sense. He showed excellent composure and got into dangerous positions multiple times.
Josip Stanisic looked off the pace in the early going, but improved. Joe Scally had a very strong debut, surely enough to fire up a brand new #usmnt hype train, and just as sure to make Luca Netz feel he may have made a horrible mistake
— matt hermann (@MrMattHermann) August 13, 2021
The young Croat even navigated as a false full-back during the early stages of the second half in order to counteract the Gladbach press. Quite an impressive debut indeed for the defender, who is more than likely to get the nod ahead of Bouna Sarr in the next game.
Dayot Upamecano: 4/10
While Stanisic raised a lot of eyebrows, it was a disastrous debut for Dayot Upamecano. The new Bayern Munich defensive general was all over the place, notably getting beaten in the lead up to Gladbach’s early goal. He was also powerless to stop Marcus Thuram during the late stages of the game and was extremely lucky to get away with two fouls that could have been labelled as penalties.
Niklas Sule: 5/10
Niklas Sule played alongside Upamecano at the heart of the Bayern Munich defence. His tall, imposing figure was not of much help for the Bavarians as they required more technical presence in defence. Sule did fare well on certain aerial duels, but it was largely a disappointing performance for someone regarded as one of the best in Germany.
Alphonso Davies: 7.5/10
Alphonso Davies was certainly one of the better players for Bayern Munich even though it was he who lost possession cheaply in the tenth minute, leading to Gladbach’s opener. The speedy left-back looked very useful in possession, at times, but it was his smart, explosive movements that opened up to the Gladbach defence time and time again.
Sommer, Scally, Lainer, Neuhaus, Stindl, Upa, Kimmich & Lewandowski are all superb but special shoutout to Davies & Thuram. Both were doubts before the game but they played magnificent especially the generational Candian talent. Alphonso has it all. #BMGFCB
— 🇪🇹 Eskender Tamrat ⚽️ (@eskeFussball) August 13, 2021
Joshua Kimmich: 7.5/10
It was an incredibly slow start to the game for Joshua Kimmich, who was anonymous in the first 30 minutes of the proceedings. But the influential midfielder eventually settled in, orchestrating the game for his team and eventually providing the assist for Lewandowski’s equaliser with a sumptuous delivery.
Kimmich was certainly one of the better players for Bayern in the second half. His aggression and control in the game was exemplary, though it was not enough to get his team over the line.
Leon Goretzka: 5/10
While Kimmich did well to get back into the game, it was a disappointing performance from Leon Goretzka. His trademark driving runs into the opposition channels was missing. The midfielder also was not very effective in one-on-one duels, making it easier for the opposition to play the ball in tight spaces. Not a good sign for the former Schalke starlet, who remains one of the club’s key players this season.
Leroy Sane: 6/10
Leroy Sane endured a difficult game up against Joe Scally. He was pocketed by the young American throughout the large parts of the game. The former Manchester City winger did showcase his skills at times during the final phase of the first half, having a key part to play in Bayern’s eventual comeback. But overall, it was a sub-par performance from the attacker, who needs to improve in order to settle himself as a first-team regular for the club.
Thomas Muller: 5/10
Thomas Muller was another player who produced an underwhelming display in the final third. He was anonymous for the most part, struggling to get into those clever positions to offer more space to his teammates. Gladbach did admittedly defend him quite well, with the German forward eventually getting subbed off later in the game.
Serge Gnabry: 6.5/10
Serge Gnabry certainly looked better than Sane out wide. He looked determined to make an impact on the ball, but the German international was not involved enough to make a difference. He was also defended well by Stefan Lainer on the far side, despite all his pace and dynamism in the final third.
Robert Lewandowski: 6.5/10
It was not the best of performances from Robert Lewandowski. Despite his goal, he missed a couple of excellent scoring opportunities and also found it difficult the impact the game, as he was often overwhelmed by the Gladbach defenders. The Polish international must improve his technical work rate in order to thrive in Nagelsmann’s system that can operate even without a centre forward.
New season, same Lewandowski! 🔥
He gets Bayern on the board with this volley! pic.twitter.com/F7pmtHRUc6
— ESPN (@espn) August 13, 2021
Kingsley Coman: 6.5/10
Kingsley Coman was a late substitute for Bayern Munich. He offered instantly pace and energy on the flanks, even crafting a great opportunity for his team late in the game.
Jamal Musiala: 6/10
Jamal Musiala struggled to impact the game after coming on for Gnabry in the 75th minute. On the contrary, he gave up the bill fairly easily in a dangerous position that could have led to Gladbach’s winner.
Bouna Sarr: N/A
A late replacement for Stanisic. 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.