Drawn against SV Drochtersen/Assel in the DFB Pokal, Bayern Munich were made to work hard for their 1-0 win against the fourth-tier side. A poor performance was rescued by Robert Lewandowski’s 81st minute winner, which will surely give fans many concerns ahead of the coming 2018/19 Bundesliga season, which kicks-off next weekend against Hoffenheim. Continue reading
Kingsley Coman was supposed to be preparing to play for France against Sweden in their World Cup qualifying match, but it never came to pass. The talented 20 year old on loan at Bayern Munich from Italian giants Juventus suffered a bizarre injury in training and it is expected that he will miss up to 8 weeks recuperating.
It was a bitter blow for a player who when given the chance at Euro 2016 by French manager Laurent Blanc showed enough burst, creativity and hunger to set anyone’s pulses alive. He is already being compared to some French greats of yesteryear and with Bayern facing a tough season ahead of them in the Bundesliga they will rue this miss.
But as some German media pointed out there is a little good will in his injury. Though the player will miss some crucial league games and Champions League matches unlike for example the Premier League the German league has a near 5 week break and so in reality Coman will miss just four weeks.
The player has torn a capsule in his left ankle but worse of all has also torn ligaments in his knee. He is expected to fly back to Germany for his operation. Coman has made 6 appearances from 10 games for Bayern this season who lead the league only on goal difference from surprise package RB Leipizig.
Coman of course suffered a similar injury at the start of the season and with this recurrence it will be up to the Bayern medical team to assess why this has happened again, because the future is bright for the French international. This came to light this week when Bayern coach Carlo Ancelotti confirmed the clubs interest in him.
It is Bayern’s intention to buy Coman from his loan and Juventus has given the Bavarian giants the first option. The fee is believed to be around £20 million including add ons which in this day and age looks like a bargain. With the Italian champions selling Paul Pogba to Manchester United in the summer this deal sounds slightly odd given that they could have requested the return of the 20 year old at any moment. Right now despite his injuries it looks certain that by as early as January Coman will be a full time Bayern Munich player.
Could this be a huge mistake by Juve? Only last year influential Spanish magazine Don Balon named Coman as one of the greatest footballing prospects in Europe. Only time will tell.
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After the ashes have settled and the disappointment for the French team losing on home turf in the Euro 2016 final there are still some positives to take from Les Bleus tournament.
One of course is the rising emergence of players such as Dimitri Payet, surplus to requirements at Marseille they sold him to Premier League club West Ham United where he was supposed to start his journeyman career. But Payet it seems has blossomed late on and looks a good deal for any club now or in the future.
Antoine Griezmann we already knew about- here is a player that continuously lights up the Cauldron a stadium in which he is the orchestrator for his club Atletico Madrid. Samuel Umtiti almost unheard of outside Ligue 1 had an outstanding tournament and his reward was a move to Barcelona.
And then there is Kingsley Coman. He was 19 when the Euro’s started and 20 when it finished and literally went from teenager to adult in that time. French coach Didier Deschamps was hesitant to use the attacking winger, for fear of his youth, never starting him in a game. And so he quickly became known as the super sub, but what a sub.
Each time Coman was unleashed onto the pitch he was able to inject countless amounts of energy into the team. He was quick, decisive, made the right pass and rarely lost the ball and he didn’t seem to phase him at all that he was playing in his first ever major tournament.
Whilst there is talk of his countryman Paul Pogba going back to Manchester United for upwards of £100 million, some of Europe’s elite could do no wrong to keep one eye on this kid. Thing of it is, the elite already have him under their wings.
Coman came through the PSG ranks but with the bottomless pit of money and proven talent at the squad and he being just 17 he was sold on to Juventus. Juve in turn gave him just 15 appearances before coming to the decision to loan him out to German giants Bayern Munich. This season he will start his second and probably last season with the Bavarians. The reason is that if Juventus don’t call Coman back the player will be available to Munich for just £20 million. A bargain that feels more like theft given the humongous transfers of the past few weeks.
If Pogba does, as expected leave Juventus, the Old Lady will surely recall Coman back. He looks like the back bone, the hope and the glory for the French national team in the coming years.
There are not many players in world football right now that when they receive the ball you can’t quite anticipate what will follow next, he loves his football and we love the excitement he gives us- stardust is Coman.
It seemed for almost an hour that the Republic of Ireland the underdogs were about to dump the hosts France out of Euro 2016. And then Antoine Griezmann made his mark on the game with two stunning strikes inside 3 minutes to seal victory for the French.
Les Bleus had started the match in the worst possible fashion after giving a penalty away just 2 minutes into the game. Robbie Brady converted it and the Irish had taken an unlikely lead.
From then on the game belonged to France who dominated possession but there was a hint that today just wouldn’t be theirs. Time and again chances were missed with all France’s usual star players being guilty. Dimitri Payet so good in these championships was guilty on more than one occasion of seeking personal glory. He took many shots from long range hoping for the spectacular instead of not playing the ball to the better positioned player.
Antoine Griezmann’s passing was wayward and over powered and the French team time and again when going forward seemed happy to kick the ball back. In short we were witnessing a performance where it was literally 1 step forward and two back and the Irish kept their back four solid up to that point frustrating the hosts and even showing signs of going forward.
Indeed if it wasn’t for Hugo Lloris in goal France most probably would have been out of Euro 2016. The Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper made a brace of saves from short range that kept his side in the game. Griezmann might be getting all the plaudits and deservedly so but Lloris’ performance shouldn’t go unnoticed.
Paul Pogba showed signs of why Juventus don’t want to sell him for under £100m Euros but another player to stand out for France was Kingsley Coman. The 20 year old was electric in the second half and really opened up an until then very defensive Irish unit.
Griezmann’s first goal and France’s equaliser was a superb header and the second owed much to the Irish’s defence tiredness by then as the goal, but he took it well.
After France went 2-1 up there was only going to be one winner as the wind was taken out of the Irish game and then to add insult to injury Shane Duffy was shown the red card for taking out Griezmann who was going for his hat trick.
Republic of Ireland have played their part in this tournament and their fans have been fantastic but the end of the road has come for the Irish. As for France they march on to a quarter final date with either England or Iceland.
German league leaders Bayern Munich will play host to Portuguese league leaders Benfica on Tuesday in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals.
On paper, the Bundesliga champions will be favorites but assuming Bayern will go through from this tie should not be taken for granted. Italian champions Juventus exposed Bayern’s clumsy and susceptible defensive line and Juve striker Alvaro Morata was able to run circle around the Bavarian defenders in Munich.
Another concern for Bayern is the fact Arjen Robben will most likely miss the first game in Munich. While Bayern can compensate for his absence, particularly with the return of Frenchman Franck Ribéry and the presence of young compatriot Kingsley Coman, the team’s manager Pep Guardiola would most likely prefer to have Robben with his added experience and his uncanny ability to get foul calls.
In addition, it would be wrong to focus on Bayern without mentioning a few pillars of the squad, including the club’s top scorer Robert Lewandowski, midfield terrier Arturo Vidal and German star Thomas Müller. Austrian defender David Alaba, who can also operate in midfield, is another name to keep an eye on.
The big names and the great exposure given to Bayern Munich should not take away any credit from current Primeira Liga leaders Benfica and their pool of talented players. In attack, Portuguese top league scorer Jonas Gonçalves Oliveira is having the best season of his career and the veteran is supported by Greek striker Kostas Mitroglou. Between them, the attacking tandem has managed to score an impressive 47 league goals this season!
Another player to keep an eye on is midfielder Nicolás Gaitán who has scored 4 goals and provided 3 assists in 7 Champions League starts this season.
This should be an interesting battle between two teams on top of their respective league, yet the history, the players at Guardiola’s disposal and Bayern’s experience tip the balance in the Bavarian team’s favor. However, nothing can be taken for granted! Tune in on Tuesday, April 5th, 2015 to find out what the final score will be and remember you can follow the result of the game live by clicking here.