Bundesliga News

Bayern's surprising competition in midfield

By Jonathan Dicks   @Jonathan_Dicks

While Leon Goretzka is back to full fitness after returning from injury, Julian Nagelsmann prefers Marcel Sabitzer for a start in midfield against Barcelona.
Leon Goretzka.
Leon Goretzka.Photo: Rufus46, CC BY-SA 3.0
After his disappointing first season in Bavaria, Marcel Sabitzer has thrived in a consistent starting role with Leon Goretzka out injured. Now, Goretzka is fully back after playing the entire game against Stuttgart this past weekend.

While Bayern are still cautiously easing Goretzka back into the squad after knee surgery, Sabitzer's emphasis on defensive duties in midfield allows Joshua Kimmich to happily move into attack. Kimmich still drops back for his devastating over-the-top passes, but it's clear that Goretzka's desire to push forward is very different from what Sabitzer provides to Kimmich.

In his press conference prior to their fixture against Barcelona, Julian Nagelsmann stated that, “Sabitzer will play alongside Kimmich. With regard to Leon [Goretzka], we decided that he would play the full game against Stuttgart. He feels the strain, so it would be too early for him to start again tomorrow. 'Sabi' is important defensively and I'm happy he's in good form."

It will be interesting to see how this plays out moving forward with Goretzka determined to reclaim his starting role.

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