The king is dead, long live the king! The dust has hardly settled on Julian Nagelsmann’s shock sacking by Bayern Munich and new boss Thomas Tuchel has taken his first training session and it preparing feverishly for the potential title-deciding Klassiker against Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.
It’s a fresh start (even at this late stage of the season), so which players are going to benefit from the change in coach and which ones are perhaps going to rue the day Nagelsmann got his marching orders?
Much will depend on the formation and tactics chosen by Tuchel, but if we assume he’ll play his favoured 3-4-3 system employed at Chelsea, then we can predict the potential winners and losers from the coaching switch
The clear ‘loser’ under Julian Nagelsmann was midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, who just didn’t get the minutes and saw his dream of making the Dutch World Cup squad dashed as a result. He arrived from Ajax in the summer with a big reputation and huge potential, but for whatever reason, Nagelsmann just didn’t fine the opportunities for him to showcase his talent. It’s hard to imagine the 20-year-old not benefitting from the arrival of the new coach.
Sadio Mané was another player who struggled under Nagelsmann even though he has been given plenty of game time, Whether it was the way he was deployed or the instructions given to him, the former Liverpool player just didn’t deliver under the old trainer and will be looking to prove himself now that Tuchel has come in.
Attacking fullbacks Joao Cancelo and Alphonso Davies will benefit and they could be the Bayern equivalents of Reece James and Ben Chilwell, who Tuchel had at Chelsea.
Serge Gnabry found things difficult under Nagelsmann this season and not just because of his trip to the Paris Fashion Week in free time. The Frenchman could be one to profit from Tuchel’s arrival. Tuchel wasn’t afraid to give talented youngsters the nod at both PSG and Chelsea despite the big transfers the club brought in. If we’re looking for a youngster to blossom under Tuchel then Austrian midfielder Paul Wanner could be the one.
If Tuchel does go for a back four then you’d have to imagine that Dayot Upamecano and Mathijs de Ligt would be his first-choice pairing with speedier attacking fullbacks to compliment them. This could spell trouble for Benjamin Pavard and fuel further speculation that his future is destined to be elsewhere. A similar downturn in fortunes could be the case for Josip Stanisic.
Joshua Kimmich is an untouchable, but the same cannot be said for Leon Goretzka and his words of support for Nagelsmann this week clearly showed that he didn’t really agree with the decision to change coaches. If Ryan Gravenberch gets more game time, it will come at Goretzka’s expense.
Despite his fine goalscoring feats this season, being reunited with Thomas Tuchel again might not be all smiles for Eric-Maxim Choupo Moting. The pair worked together at Paris St Germain and the striker enjoyed a successful time under Tuchel at Mainz at the start of his career. However, with Mathys Tel in the wings, Choupo Moting might see his number one spot in attack under threat.
Much will depend on Leroy Sané’s attitude and approach as to whether he gains or loses under Tuchel. There is talk of the winger being unsettled in Munich with his wife and child having moved back to Manchester and the player commuting between the UK and Germany.