Julian Nagelsmann shuffles the deck in an apparent attempt to bring out the best in the star Senegalese.
Is Sadio Mané doing well at Bayern Munich? The dynamic do-it-all forward arrived from Liverpool this summer in good form but has struggled to score goals since then.
The club’s management appears to be doing everything they can to get him firing again, starting him on the left wing in two consecutive games against FC Barcelona in the Champions League and FC Augsburg in the Bundesliga.
Reportedly, that move could be permanent, which would have significant ramifications for Bayern’s attacking structure. From kicker Georg Holzner:
Sadio #Mane is now seen more as a winger at @fcbayern. Just like at the best of times in #Liverpool. Those in charge give him time.
A remarkable scene: During the half-time break in Augsburg, Manuel #Neuer hugged Mané and talked to him.
Mané hasn’t exactly played poorly through this drought — the latter parts of which he hasn’t had striker partner Serge Gnabry alongside him — but nonetheless, the move may help unlock something else in his game.
It might also create a crowded situation at the wing, where Kingsley Coman and Leroy Sané still play and may have to vie for time — on the right side of the formation. Meanwhile, the move could shift Thomas Müller and Jamal Musiala not only inside, but into the tip of the attacking line, where they were employed against Barça.
It may also afford greater opportunities to Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting as the team’s lone box striker option up top, as well as open up chances for the fearless youngster Mathys Tel — who has also been deployed largely on the wings to date but has never been shy to shoot.
Encouraging signs, or worrying? Is Julian Nagelsmann tinkering too much again? Does this cast Bayern’s big transfer window in a different light? Sound off in the comments below.