More Frustration from Die Roten
Bayern Munich once again give a lackluster performance, grinding to 1-1 draw with an inspired Schalke side.
Lack of Desire
Whatever the root of the issue may be, Bayern Munich have not been playing with heart since returning from the winter break, often looking stale and lethargic. For the third week in a row, a more determined opponent met FC Bayern on the pitch, and this time they were unable to escape unscathed. Schalke simply wanted this match more, which was evident by the poor performance from the men in red and the inspired one from their opposition.
Scoring Struggles Continue
As in weeks past–and for much of the first half of the season–Bayern struggled not only to create chances, but also to put them away. Lewandowski’s finish was well crafted and beautifully taken, but after that, Bayern never really posed a threat to Fahrmann’s goal. Sure, much of that was due to the excellent defending from Schalke, but that does not take away from the disappointing display given by the men in red.
Holger Badstuber Developing Nicely
Badstuber, on loan to Schalke from Bayern, performed excellently in the Schalke defense. Bayern could do little to break down the Gelsenkirchen unit and much of that was thanks to the rock solid Badstuber. If this is any indication of his progress while at Schalke, the loan move will seem like a master move for both clubs and the player himself. Well done, Holger.
A 500th Appearance for Der Kapitan
Philipp Lahm’s late game substitution marked his 500th appearance for FC Bayern. Poetic justice would have had Lahm scoring the game winner, but reality proved to be a bit more harsh. All things considered, Lahm will be eager to forget the actual game in which he reached the milestone, but 500 appearances is no small feat. Be sure to take a moment and appreciate how fortunate Bayern has been to have such a longstanding leader both on and off the pitch. Whether sooner or later, it will be a sad day when Der Kapitan finally hangs up the boots for his club as he has already done for his country.
Manuel Neuer — 6: An uncharacteristically poor performance for Neuer, who should have done better to keep out a rather tame free kick from Naldo.
Juan Bernat — 7.5: A good performance for Bernat, who started in place of David Alaba. Should have finished a great chance on the offensive end, but played well defensively.
Mats Hummels — 6.5: Sub-par from Hummels who was not the defensive anchor fans have become used to seeing.
Javi Martinez — 7: Slightly better than Hummels in defense, but completely wasted a clear goal-scoring opportunity on the other end.
Rafinha — 6.5: Drifted forward perhaps too often, leaving the right flank too exposed. Not a terrible game from the Brazilian though.
Arturo Vidal — 7.5: Did well to have an immediate impact after returning from injury, providing the assist for Lewandowski’s opener. Could be forgiven perhaps for not playing with his typical energy, but still played well in the midfield.
Xabi Alonso — 7: Did well to keep possession and ping the ball around the field. Not much to note of the Spaniard’s match.
Douglas Costa — 6.5: Struggled to find any space on the wings. Had little impact on the match.
Thomas Muller — 6: At this point is there really any need in describing his game? You know how this goes. Had a chance late in the game, but a lack in confidence led to an unnecessary extra touch which gave Nastasic time to clear out any danger.
Arjen Robben — 6: Other than his incisive run which eventually led to Lewandowski’s goal, Robben had a poor match. Completely shut down by thee undoubted Man of the Match, Sead Kolasinac.
Robert Lewandowski — 8: The best player in red today, Lewandowski finished his first chance with aplomb, and almost doubled his tally late in the first half before being denied by the crossbar. Starved of chances from his teammates, there was not much more Lewandowski could do.
Kingsley Coman — 6: Like Robben, Coman was denied any space by Kolasinac. Should have done better to get on the end of a well placed header from Lewandowski late in the match.
Philipp Lahm — N/R: Nothing worth note from Lahm on his 500th appearance.
David Alaba – N/R: Put in a few good crosses toward the end, but could do nothing to save Die Roten.