Bayern Munich Jumped the Gun by Appointing Hansi Flick - But it's a Match Made in Heaven


Bayern Munich's decision to appoint interim coach Hans-Dieter Flick as their new permanent manager came out the blue.

Flick has done a stellar job since moving to Bavaria following the departure of Niko Kovač, but many expected Bayern Munich to be tapping up the likes of Erik ten Hag or even Pep Guardiola before they made a decision on their new boss.

The 55-year-old may not have been the appointment many fans were expecting. Or, at the very least, Flick wasn't expected to be unveiled yet. But Joachim Löw's former assistant with the national team has already shown he has what it takes to continue Bayern Munich's reign of dominance.

Flick has only been charge for 21 games. He lost back to back games just before the Winterpause to Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Mönchengladbach, while his side were also held to a goalless draw by RB Leipzig.

The other 18 games where Flick has been in the dugout have ended with wins. 

In the Bundesliga, a record of 37 points from a possible 45 has seen the Bavarians move four points clear at the top of the table - when Flick was appointed, Bayern sat fourth, level on points with SC Freiburg.

Flick's also impressed in Germany's domestic cup competition. Bayern Munich went through fairly easily against TSG Hoffenheim, although two late goals from Munas Dabbur made the 4-3 scoreline look deceiving, while the DFB-Pokal holders also got past David Wagner's Schalke.

But it's further afield in Europe where Bayern Munich have perhaps been at their most impressive.

Robert Lewandowski entered the Champions League record books when he netted four in Bayern Munich's 6-0 win over Red Star in December, while the Rekordmeister have also enjoyed wins against Tottenham Hotspur and, most impressively, Chelsea.

They were rightly lauded for their performance at Stamford Bridge, something that's made even more impressive given the fact Bayern Munich, like Frank Lampard's Chelsea, are a side who are in a major transition.

It's not exactly easy to pinpoint what Flick's done which has worked so well at Bayern Munich. In fact, it's probably easier to laud the ex-national team coach for what he hasn't done.

One major criticism of Kovač was his determination to force Bayern Munich to play his way - a style of football which brought the DFB-Pokal to Eintracht Frankfurt in 2018, at the Bavarians' expense - but Flick has taken those chains off his side.

It's helped that he is already known to the core of Bayern Munich's dressing room too. Man management is a key skill for any new boss at the Allianz Arena, but Flick already has a rapport with players like Manuel NeuerThomas Müller and Jérôme Boateng from his time with the Nationalmannschaft.

Lastly, things only get more impressive for Flick when looking at the players he's used throughout his 21 games in charge.

Neuer and Müller have, perhaps unsurprisingly, featured in every match so far under Flick, but teenager Alphonso Davies is the only other player to make 21 appearances since his arrival.

Youngsters are also getting a chance. Summer signings Sarpreet Singh (one), Leon Dajaku and Mickaël Cuisance (both two) have made appearances, while Joshua Zirkzee has played more often that Bayern Munich's club-record signing, Lucas Hernandez.

There are still a lot of question regarding what the future might hold for Flick. 

The club are being linked with lots of big names ahead of the transfer window and Flick will be judged on his signings, but if Löw's former assistant continues on his current path, Bayern Munich should be perched at the top of the Bundesliga table for the next couple of years at least.

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