Matchday in focus: Extremely versatile opponents | OneFootball

Matchday in focus: Extremely versatile opponents

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Eintracht Frankfurt

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Bayern Munich travel to Frankfurt with a near full-strength squad, but head coach Julian Nagelsmann may be forced into a tactical reshuffle.


Ahead of Bayern’s DFL Supercup victory over RB Leipzig, fans were eager to see how Julian Nagelsmann’s side would line up in attack following Robert Lewandowski’s departure to Barcelona. The 35-year-old head coach usually opted for a 4-2-3-1 formation last season but played Sadio Mané alongside Serge Gnabry in a 4-2-2-2 system during Saturday’s 5-3 win. That said, Bayern’s front two were always on the go and regularly swapped positions with Jamal Musiala and Thomas Müller.


Aurélio Buta remains sidelined after undergoing knee surgery. Jerome Onguéné is struggling with a pulled muscle, while Hrvoje Smolcic will miss the Eagles’ Bundesliga opener through suspension after being sent off in the Croatian Cup final at the end of last season. As for Bayern, Leon Goretzka (injured) and Kingsley Coman (suspended) will definitely miss the trip to Frankfurt, while Manuel Neuer (stomach problems) and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (groin issues) are doubts.

One to watch

Fast, full of tricks, agile and blessed with a ferocious shot – Sadio Mané will don the red of Bayern Munich in 2022/23.

- 111 goals in 263 Premier League appearances, as well as 24 UEFA Champions League goals and 33 international efforts for Senegal.

- Hailed as a “world-class player” by former coach Jürgen Klopp following confirmation of his departure

- The versatile forward can play on the wing, as part of a front two – as he did against Leipzig – or as a lone striker

- Honours include: English Premier League, FA Cup, Champions League, FIFA Club World Cup, Africa Cup of Nations, African Footballer of the Year (twice), Austrian Bundesliga, Austrian Cup, joint-top Premier League goalscorer in 2018/19

Key battle: Almamy Toure vs. Jamal Musiala

Almamy Toure made the European stage his own last season, appearing in Eintracht’s final five Europa League knockout games – including the historic quarter-final victory over Barcelona and the final in Seville. The 26-year-old, who joined the Eagles from AS Monaco in 2019, clocked up 10 Bundesliga appearances and eight Europa League outings in 2021/22. In the recent 4-0 DFB Cup first-round victory over Magdeburg, Toure formed a back three alongside Evan Ndicka and Tuta.

Against Bayern, Toure is likely to be kept busy by one of the Bundesliga champions’ standout performers over the past two seasons – Jamal Musiala. The Stuttgart native, who made his Germany debut as an 18-year-old in March 2021, has earned plenty of admirers thanks to his composure and technical ability. Now 19, Musiala hit the ground running in the 5-3 victory over Leipzig in the DFL Supercup, producing a performance that Nagelsmann described afterwards as “world class”.

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