Summer Time – Reading Time

Georg Separator July 23, 2020

Tactical and Statistical Analysis

In its weekly post, the CIES Football Observatory analyses the ball movement of European clubs in the past two seasons. They use InStat data on ball movement (in km) during possession phases to compare the clubs. And FC Bayern ranks atop of Manchester City and Liverpool. Peter Bosz’s Bayer Leverkusen follows remarkably at fourth position.  

Robert Lewandowski, according to many Bayern fans robbed of the coming Ballon d’Or, is a striker like few others, Car Elsik finds in his scouting report of the Polish striker  for Total Football Analysis. He describes Lewandowski’s movement and timing in a very detailed and picturesque way.

One thing the Polish super striker has yet to achieve with Bayern is reaching a Champions League final. Speaking of which, Statsbomb takes a look back at the final 2013, when Bayern beat Dortmund. In their analysis they find that it was the Champions League final with the lowest pass completions rate in the 2010s, probably due to the extreme pressing style of both sides.

Quo vadis Bundesliga?

Raphael Honigstein joins the Football Today podcast and discusses if Bayern’s dominance is bad for German football? While one can easily argue that eight domestic league titles in a row are far from perfect, there is a positive side to it: People worldwide love the German super team. Success of Bayern and their superstar players is Bundesliga’s only chance to gain attention when competing with other leagues and sports for fans and airtime. Any artificial weakening of Bayern could hurt the recognition of German football abroad.

Impact of Ghost Games

Musa Okwonga of the Ringer writes about the unsettling sounds of silence in soccer stadiums. He worries that the fans could be turned “into little more than the background soundtrack”. In an interesting analogy he explains why the Bundesliga and the NBA are somewhat similar and why La Liga is more like the European NFL.

Focusing what happened on the pitch in the ghost games, Statsbomb let’s numbers speak: less intensity and more chances from open play (expected goals). Apparently “it was easier for most of the teams to get close to the goal without having to rely on attacking actions that require outstanding individual skills.”

Transfer Rumour

In the never-ending Thiago saga, Manuel Veth explains how a potential transfer to Liverpool could look like. Apparently both Klopp and Flick like the player. A lot. The clubs are rather hesitant, so far.

Talent Watch

Starting with the overall picture, Manuel Veth explains for Forbes how the acquisition of PSG’s Tanguy Kouassi fits into the club’s youth strategy. Manuel explains that FC Bayern pursues “a policy in which they want to identify the world’s best talent before they are on the radar of other clubs.” By doing so, they have been able to build a first-class team without spending top money on the transfer market.

Speaking of Tanguy Kouassi, Abdullah Abdullah published a scouting report about the youngster. He describes the Frenchman as “a blend of old and new”: tall enough for classical defense work and capable of playing progressive passes through the midfield. Laserpasses incoming?

It should come at no surprise that Alphonso Davies makes it to the Bundesliga U-22 Team of the Season, where he joins Sancho, Havertz and others. Whom of FC Bayern youngsters do you expect to follow suit next year?

Where there is Yang, there is also Yin. While Phonzies development has exceeded all expectations, Jan Fiete Arp’s recent performance have not matched earlier expecations of the wonderkind as Mathew Burt notices for Bundesligafan. He does not expect to see Jan Fiete in Bayern’s first team anytime soon, but thinks that a loan could might do him well.

Another Bayern youngster has made it to the radar of Bundesligafan. Josh Sim explains why Nicolas Kühn, now permanently with FC Bayern after having joined from Ajax in January on loan, could be a sneaky good signing for the Bavarians. A left-footed right winger with a Dutch history – there are footsteps to fill at Säbener Straße.

Say No to Racism

In an interview with Deutsche Welle, Jerome Boateng once more takes a clear stand. “Everything begins with the education of children. That’s the most important thing. No child in this world is born a racist. It’s up to the parents and what they tell their children”, he wisely remembers. He also mentions that there is room for improvement for fellow sportsmen to participate in the current campaigns, e.g. for the Black Lives Matter movement.

»Eier, wir brauchen Eier!«

— Oliver Kahn

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