Bayern Munich will not accept this. It’s been less than a month since the club sacked manager Julian Nagelsmann, who was hired for more than $25 million. went skiing when deemed inappropriate. The club is unlikely to shrug off not only the Champions League, but also the German Cup in a matter of days.
Thomas Tuchel, the newly appointed replacement for Nagelsmann, should be safe for now, but there will be a blur of change around him. Iconic goalkeeper-turned-CEO Oliver Kahn is under scrutiny. Another former player, now Bayern’s sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić, will not be resting easily. Club president Herbert Hainer has already hinted that the squad will be replaced.
Whether any of this will have the desired effect is another matter.There was a sense that the two clubs were moving in opposite directions as we watched Manchester City keep Bayern at bay on Wednesday night. . The era of belonging to City, and the avatar of new football buddies, is undoubtedly beginning.
Still, the big picture is much more complicated than that, and it’s practically simple.
No, Bayern cannot compete with City in the long run. The cohesive strength of Bayern’s corporate culture is unmatched by the particular blend of wealth and national resources in the Premier League. Gone are the days when Bayern could essentially function as a Bundesliga all-star team. Gone are the days of perpetuating domestic dominance and European relevance by plucking the best players from rivals. Like Juventus and Barcelona before it, Bayern Munich will or will bow to England’s economic superiority at some point.
But macroeconomic trends over a decade cannot be easily boiled down to about two hours of football. Margins were incredible, even in a match that would set the direction of the sport as a whole. In this case, it comes down to the fact that City have a formidable goalscorer — Erling Haaland, you may have heard him mentioned — and Bayern are essentially not. Tuchel’s team created his six chances before Haaland scored in Munich. It took none of them.