“I’m god, I’m always right about everything”, this speech was told by Louis van Gaal in the dressing room in front of his players. The reality of course is a bit different; Bayern Munich must grapple with one of its biggest crisis in its club history.
At the beginning of the new season the Bayern officials praised their new coach Louis van Gaal as the most distinguished man in European football. Van Gaal’s experience and his coaching style should eradicate the “Klinsmann-experiment”. Three months later van Gaals balance is inferior to Jürgen Klinsmanns performance.
Six points behind the top team in the Bundesliga and after the embarrassing lost game against Girondins Bordeaux, the quarterfinals of the Champions League are very doubtful.
A few weeks ago the club brooke a record, a very sad record, the club didn’t stay at the top position at the standings since 500 days. The current situation isn’t satisfying for the club officials, who unveiled the best Bayern Munich team squad ever. But what are the reasons for the failure of this top team, who spent 75 million Euro for new players this season.
The following points reflect my opinion, the opinion of the German press and German critics:
1. Coach Louis van Gaal
His way of treating his players is doubtful. He used to coach in very autocratic and conservative style and he only accepts his own opinion. Sure as a coach you must have a steady arm on the tiller but you must be prepared for new or improvised solutions of some upcoming problems. A coach has to think of the mentality of his players and their current mental shape.
Van Gaal showed lack of competence on these fields in the past months and I think it’s a dangerous situation for a team, when a coach doesn’t think of the needs of his players and devotes oneself only to his way. Last week van Gaal presented his autobiography to public. In this biography he writes: “You can release me, and then? There’s no other coach with such a curriculum vitae than me!”
2. Player transfers
Bayern bought new players for nearly 75 million euro, that’s a record – but are all of these transfers successful and useful – of course not. Bayern Munich paid 30 million Euros for striker Mario Gomez, but till now he plays not successful and has to grapple with sitting on the reserve bank. Of course such a high transfer fee is a heavy load for a young player like Gomez, but he must accept the challenge.
In my opinion, Bayern Munich should have saved the money for a midfielder or a defender, instead of spending the money for Gomez. The strikers Miroslav Klose, Luca Toni, Ivica Olic and youngster Thomas Müller are good enough for the upcoming challenges in the Bundesliga and Champions League.
Another failed transfer is the Timoschuk-deal. I can’t see any sense in buying another defensive midfielder, when you have Marc van Bommel and Andreas Ottl in your current squad. Timoschuk, who is talking about going back to Zenit St. Petersburg on March at the moment, was too expensive. Edson Braafheid and Daniel Pranjic aren’t in the condition to fill the right back position – Defender Breno (12 million Euros), no comment about his performance.
Bayern Munich failed to look after a solid right back in the preseason. This position is deserted since several seasons and the management didn’t react appropriately to solve this problem. Instead of this van Gaal sold Lucio to Inter, a player, who gave all his passion for the club.
3. Where’s the team-leader??
In the past years in every great Bayern Munich team, one player attires the team-leader role. Oliver Kahn, Stefan Effenberg, Lothar Matthäus or Karl-Heinz Rummenigge put their stamps on the team hierarchy and managed the difficult situations. They expedited their team to success, and they had successful times in the Bavarian city.
I guess at the moment no one in the squad is able to play such a dominant role, even Arien Robben or Frank Ribery.
But if you want to win a trophy you need such a type of player!