Youth teams heading into the top matches
The start of the season was a tough one for Bayern’s amateurs. Due of the USA trip of the first team, with Karl-Heinz Lappe, Nicolas Feldhahn, Niklas Dorsch, Fabian Benko, Erdal Özturk and Tim Häußler making it six amateur players travelling with them, a pretty odd fixture list was necessary. The season opener at home against FV Illertissen (2-1) was followed by four consecutive away games. Even the upcoming derby with the blue neighbours is an away game on paper.
The record after the first five games is even more impressive: four wins and one draw (0-0 with 10 men in Ingolstadt) reflect a very good start for Heiko Vogel’s team. Only the highly regarded SpVgg Unterhaching, which added former Bundesliga player Stephan Hain to their already outstanding squad, had an even better start and won all of their first six matches. The amateurs are still missing the injured new signing Torsten Oehrl, whose comeback will boost the attacking quality even more. The defence is stable and only conceded four goals in five games, showing Heiko Vogel’s preferred back three formation has proven itself.
At the weekend the prestigious derby against the “Löwen” awaits. In last season’s second derby our team displayed its worst performance of the season and miserably lost 0-2, so the team has to make it up for their fans. The Blues have also started well with five wins, one draw and one loss, which means the derby will be on a level playing field. All Bayern fans can watch the game as Sport1 will broadcast the game live from the “Hermann-Gerland-Kampfbahn”. Kick-off is at 2pm GMT. Following this, there are two home games against Rosenheim and Wacker Burghausen, where the amateurs will have to deal without their best player so far, as Niklas Dorsch is selected for the DFB’s U19s squad.
The record was disappointing. In the last seven years Bayern’s U19s managed only three wins with four draws and a hefty eight losses against the local rival. The joy was massive after getting a well-deserved 2-1 derby win last weekend, where we saw a clear advantage in our favour. Due to poor finishing the result didn’t reflect the landslide victory. The first two games were also won against SC Freiburg (2-1) and Stuttgarter Kickers (2-0). The stable defence of our U19s is remarkable, while the offence was a little sloppy in the opening two matches. Since the team does not only have great individual quality in their starting eleven, but also on the bench (Hadzic, Emghames), it’s unpredictable for the opponents.
Coach Holger Seitz made a change for the derby and started Benni Hadzic for the first time ahead of Mario Crnicki, who has stayed quiet during the first two games. The agile and playful Hadzic combines very well with Manuel Wintzheimer, definitely much better than Crnicki who has a similar playing style to him. At halftime of the derby Emghames replaced a poor Shabani that lost the ball too often. Emghames was essential to the complete downfall of the Lions’ defence. There’s a big possibility that Hadzic and Emghames will start the upcoming matches, with Crnicki and Shabani taking a place on the bench.
Our U19s will face TSG Hoffenheim as their next opponent, who have also won their first three games. Therefore we’ll see a duel between first and second and a potential decision who might be able to gain a small margin over the rest of the league already. The highly touted VfB Stuttgart had a modest start with four points out of three games, the blue neighbours are rock bottom with three losses in three matches.
Bayern’s U17s is still unbeaten, too. Tim Walter’s team won the season opener in a close 2-1 against SC Freiburg, although chances for a double digit result were missed. Aluminium was struck five times in Freiburg already, one being a penalty. In the second fixture the team followed up with a convincing 4-1 win against Stuttgarter Kickers, with the team still missing some chances as well as another penalty.
The team is carried by the players who were starters in the previous season, namely Nitzl, Mai, Heiland and Evina. All four are irreplaceable in the squad. If one of them would get injured, there’d be no equivalent replacement. A great performance was displayed by the lively Ontuzans against Stuttgarter Kickers, rewarding himself with a goal and an assist. Ontuzans practiced with Carlo Ancelotti once more in the past week. New arrival Oliver Batista-Meier is still struggling with settling in, whilst possessing outstanding individual quality for his age, he shows weaknesses in training intensity as well as defensive movement. With Tim Walter he should have the right coach to fix the deficits though. In addition, the team has still issues in the defensive transition with quick counters by the opponent, conceding both goals they’ve let in this way. In the current week five players are absent, Nitzl, Mai, Heiland, Zylla (U17 national team) and Batista-Meier (U16 national team). However they should be back for the weekend.
On Saturday, the U17s are also facing TSG Hoffenheim, simultaneously to the U19s match. Our U17s are the only team in the league to win both of the previous games. Hoffenheim lost 0-2 in Kaiserslautern last weekend, joint-favourites VfB Stuttgart only have one point to their name. Consequently, our team is in first place and will definitely try to defend that spot in a tough game in Hoffenheim.