Leverkusen - FC Bayern

Germany: Bundesliga
Leverkusen P. Schick (14)
FC Bayern R. Lewandowski (43), R. Lewandowski (90)

Flick pleased with Süle's work at right-back, says he'll extend assignment against Leverkusen

By Peter Vice

Bayern trainer Hans Dieter Flick's "Wednesday Surprise" turned out to be a deployment for Niklas Süle at the right-fullback position.

After the Wolfsburg match, the 55-year-old spoke about the reasoning behind his fourth right-back of the season.

He even indicated that he would keep Süle in the role against Leverkusen on Saturday. 

Hansi Flick.
Hansi Flick.

In an attempt to find solutions for a porous defense that conceded the first goal in the last five league-fixtures, Hansi Flick surprised everyone by starting center-half Niklas Süle on the right outer lane on Wednesday. Much to everyone's surprise, the move even worked rather well.

Flick confirmed in post match interviews that he undertook the experiment because Benjamin Pavard had been neglected his defensive duties in recent matches. Moreover, back-up Bouna Sarr had failed to impress and US international Chris Richards was deemed too risky.

In general, Flick needed to find some way to compensate for the fact that the team's high-press yielded too many defensive lapses in the absence of both Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka. Even though Bayern fell behind for their six consecutive league match against Wolfsburg, Flick forgave his team the early breach.

"The plan was good," Flick told reporters, "We fought back, craving the win at all costs. I didn't observe any fatigue. Everyone was prepared to go the distance til the end."

Süle's rightward deployment required a great deal of nuance on the ball. Occasionally, the Bayern defensive line would revert to a back three. Lucas Hernandez would still patrol the flank on the left, with either Kingsley Coman or Leroy Sané moving ahead of Süle to initiated the forward momentum.

"We need to be creative at the moment," Flick explained, "That's why we're looking at ways to build [attacks] asymmetrically."

The Bayern coach expressed hope that Leon Goretzka would be fit enough to start on Saturday. Irrespective of how his midfield looks, Flick let slip that he wanted to extend's Süle new assignment in the next fixture.

1Lukáš Hradecky
6Aleksandar Dragović
4Jonathan Tah
12Edmond Tapsoba
22Daley Sinkgraven
27Florian Wirtz
15Julian Baumgartlinger (C)
11Nadiem Amiri
9Leon Bailey ↩74
14Patrik Schick ↩82
19Moussa Diaby
36Niklas Lomb
13Lucas Alario ↪82
37Emrehan Gedikli
38Karim Bellarabi
16Tin Jedvaj
23Mitchell Weiser
10Kerem Demirbay ↪74
39Cem Tuna Türkmen
FC Bayern
1Manuel Neuer (C)
4Niklas Süle
17Jérôme Boateng
21Lucas Hernández
19Alphonso Davies
24Corentin Tolisso ↩68
27David Alaba
29Kingsley Coman ↩32
25Thomas Müller
7Serge Gnabry
9Robert Lewandowski
35Alexander Nübel
10Leroy Sané ↪32 ↩68
11Douglas Costa
13E. Choupo-Moting
5Benjamin Pavard
41Chris Richards
6Joshua Kimmich ↪68
22Marc Roca
42Jamal Musiala ↪68

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