Three things we noticed: FC Bayern – Hamburger SV 6:0 (3:0)

Felix Separator March 11, 2018

Even before the match, the starting formations indicated what this game would look like.

In case you missed it

Against the HSV, Jupp Heynckes continued his rotation policy and replaced almost half of the team. This resulted in a back-four with Kimmich, Boateng, Hummels and Alaba, a midfield with Martínez and Vidal as well as an offensive four-man line of Robben, Müller, Lewandowski and Ribéry.

The basic formations of both teams. Hamburg already adapted after 25 minutes.

With the exception of the injured Coman as well as Neuer and the recently recovered James, Heynckes offered a kind of current A-list starting XI and confirmed his statement a few weeks ago to give the regular formation practice. For Wagner, Rudy, Tolisso, Süle, Thiago and Bernat this meant a place on the bench.

The four-man offensive line was intended to bind the defensively adjusted HSV team around the penalty area. “Focusing on defence”, however, can almost be regarded as an understatement in relation to the starting eleven of the North Germans: With Santos, Papadopoulos, van Drongelen, Diekmeier as well as Jung and Walace on the double six and Sakai, nominally on the right wing, seven defensive players were on the pitch. Kostic, Hunt and Schipplock formed the small offensive section.

For exactly eight minutes, this small division had an incentive to push up and put pressure on Bayern’s backline – then Franck Ribèry came and scored off an unlucky pass from Sakai for the 1:0, and the early lead provided what an early Bayern lead against the HSV always provided: panic. And since panic is a bad companion in duels in the penalty area, Robert Lewandowski had an easy game at 2:0 four minutes later and headed home a cross by Kimmich.

In the 19th minute followed goal number three in which neither Boateng before his perfectly played long ball nor Alaba were prevented from passing in the penalty area and not even Lewandowski at the end. It was almost painful to watch the passive, inconsistent and completely insecure HSV defence attempting somehow not to go down.

A change to a compact back four was supposed to help in the process (Spoiler: This measure did not change much either). The fact that the 3:0 was also the halftime result was mainly due to the somewhat more leisurely Munich style of play and a less than optimal use of chances.

After just eight minutes, Ribéry ended Hamburg’s dreams.
(Image: Guenter Schiffmann / AFP / Getty Images)

During the second half, the calm and concentrated playing style of the Bayern team continued. For nine minutes the Reds combined around the penalty area – then Arjen Robben scored the 4:0 and provided the first notable scene after the break. The others: Tolisso’s injury in the 62nd minute, which led to his substitution, Thiago’s woodwork-hits after a beautiful combination on the left in the 66th minute, Lewandowski’s great chance in the 75th and Ribéry’s beautiful solo to 5:0 in the 80th minute.

Robert Lewandowski set the final point – with a missed and a few minutes later a converted penalty kick. A 6:0 against the HSV about which there is little to say in the analysis. We’re still trying to do find three things we noticed.

Three things we noticed

1. Magnificent Müller

It may have fallen a little bit under the radar recently, but Thomas Müller has managed to leave the perhaps biggest crisis of his career behind for a few months now. Müller also performed excellently against the HSV. His way of playing as a space-filler somewhere between Lewandowski, Robben and Ribéry is currently the decisive building block in Munich’s attacking game. Müller always manages to create multiple situations and at the same time is indispensable as a second option in the penalty area.

In addition, there is the Müller factor: The captain marches ahead with such an impressive attitude that no one in the team has the idea of slackening in any way. An example: In the middle of the first half, the HSV clears a ball over the sideline – and Müller? Runs wildly gesticulating towards the ball boy to take advantage of the nummercial advantage as quickly as possible.

This mentality, in combination with his playful-tactical class and his currently outstanding form, make Müller the decisive trump card in the fight for the big goals of the season. The fact that the “Raumdeuter” has left his crisis completely behind is perhaps the best news of the Bayern season so far.

2. Exactly the right dosage

For games like the one against HSV on Saturday there are theoretically two approaches. Option 1 would be to let the clear B-11 play, perhaps complemented by some talents from the youth. Clearly, this could lead to the accusation of competition being distorted, but it would probably have been enough to beat the weak HSV.

Option 2 would be to play at full throttle on a high score. Pep Guardiola would probably have done so and asked his team to deliver a perfect performance from start to finish. Without question, there are enough arguments for both alternatives. The Heynckes approach, however, is probably the best combination of both.

The team, which the experienced Bayern coach sent to the pitch, was focused for more than 90 minutes and set for the occasion. It was a solid presentation of this team – but one that made it possible to use resources efficiently.

To coach a team in such a way that it remains on its highest level without spending too much is an art – Jupp Heynckes proved on Saturday that he masters it.

3. Some bad news…

…remain: The Hamburger SV will, according to the hot take of the Miasanrot editorial team, be relegated at the end of this season. This is bad news for all HSV fans (also the author of these lines is one of these poor guys), but also for the Bayern fans. Whether it’s Düsseldorf, Nürnberg, Kiel, Bielefeld or Regensburg – whoever gets into the league for HSV will make it harder for FC Bayern.

Because that’s how much you can hold on to: In recent years, no game of the season has been easier than the home games against HSV.

FC Bayern – Hamburger SV
Bayern Ulreich – Alaba, Hummels, Boateng, Kimmich – Martínez, Vidal (46. Tolisso (65. Rudy)), Müller – Ribéry, Lewandowski, Robben (63. Thiago)
Bench Wagner, Süle, Bernat, Starke
Hamburg Mathenia – Douglas, van Drongelen, Papadoupolos, Sakai, Diekmeier (26. Janjicic) – Walace (70. Vagnoman), Jung – Kostic, Schipplock, Hunt
Bench Hahn, Pollersbeck, Waldschmidt, Jatta, Salihovic
Goals 1:0 Ribéry (8.), 2:0 Lewandowski (12.), 3:0 Lewandowski (19.), 4:0 Robben (55.), 5:0 Ribéry (81.), 6:0 Lewandowski (90., penalty)
Cards Yellow: Vidal (4.) / van Drongelen (28.), Santos (75.)
Referees Christian Dingert, Tobias Christ, Timo Gerach, Arno Blos, Sascha Stegemann, Robert Kempter
Attendance 75,000

»Eier, wir brauchen Eier!«

— Oliver Kahn

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