For the first time since Klopp at his prime, Dortmund traveled to Munich with an expectation of leaving with a good result. Bayern fired Kovac following the Frankfurt debacle, and Hans Flick took over as interim manager with just days to prepare for Olympiacos and Dortmund coming to town on Saturday. It was not to happen. Bayern simply overwhelmed Dortmund with Dortmund putting up no challenge in any facet of the game whatsoever.
Flick didn’t reinvent the wheel. The only real surprise move was starting Davies at left back and moving Alaba inside to centerback. Davies’ speed proved an incredibly insightful move where he was able to contend with Sancho and Hakimi on the Bayern left. Flick combined these defensive moves with a high press. The result was a gameplan that completely stifled any attempt by Dortmund to organize the attack for 90 minutes plus.
For Dortmund-nothing worked-end of story. Where does that leave Dortmund? Who can say. Losing at Munich is a surprise this year given what transpired earlier in the week, but would hardly have been viewed as a surprise at the beginning of the season. The loss certainly isn’t fatal to Dortmund’s aspirations this season, but definitely underscores issues that Dortmund has struggled with for weeks. The international break came just in time for a breathier. Favre and the players can’t afford any slip-ups now, they must win out through the winter break and, then, reassess what is needed to shore up the team. I don’t personally see the club making a move to separate with Favre now, but should the club not regain its form between now and the break, things could change.
The club definitely needs a backup forward given Alcacer’s injuries this season, and Favre has to figure out how to shore up the defensive line. Hummels is playing well, but Akjani is really struggling and one of Weigl, Zagadou, Belardi or whomever has to step up. Dortmund was throttled at Bayern last season and finished just points short of the title. However, Saturday’s performance won’t cut it. Favre has to get the attack working and shore up the defense.