After being left out of the starting XI to face both Hertha Berlin and Werder Bremen as well as being dropped for the crucial Champions League clashed with Manchester City, the rumour-mongers were circling around Thomas Müller suggesting his time at Bayern may be nearing an end with some suggesting he would be open to leaving the club in search of regular starts.
Rumours will always come to the fore when such a high-profile name isn’t playing and there is no higher profile name than Thomas Müller at Bayern. Back in the line-up against Schalke on Saturday, the Bayern legend sent out a clear message to the doubters with a classic Thomas Müller performance. There may have been a coronation of King Charles III in England last week, but at the Allianz Arena on Saturday Müller confirmed his place as Bayern Munich royalty.
He scored an excellent opener in Bayern’s 6-0 win and had seven shots overall (three on target). He seemed to be everywhere and provided eight actions that led to shots by other players. He seemed to bring the best out of Jamal Musiala, who has been somewhat off the boil of late.
Judging by this display any talk of the end of the road at Bayern for Müller is greatly exaggerated and misplaced. Yes, he is not getting any younger or possess the lightning pace that the modern day forward seems to have by default, but he remains a highly intelligent footballer, who’s ability to use space puts him above most of the speed merchants.
Bayern’s president Herbert Hainer described him as “indispensable” yesterday, which drew comment from coach Thomas Tuchel. “If the president says so, then the coach doesn’t contradict him. There will always be close calls, and it’s my responsibility to make these decisions” Tuchel said.
“The more hard decisions there are, the better. Because it means everyone is fit and deserved to play. Thomas is playing for his 12th league title, he’s important, is exemplary in training and he proved it again today”
The player himself was also it buoyant mood after the final whistle against the Königsblauen. “It was a good and lively start from us. The way Schalke play is very awkward for attackers because they play man to man. You don’t have a second free. But the disadvantage of this approach is that when you’ve played through this one-to-one defending with a dribble or a quick one-two, then they quickly fall apart with a good pass in behind. And when we did that, our chances were good.
“I’m pleased I could open the scoring today. It was a great feeling. The Arena exploded and we kept going. My heart is red. Well, everyone’s is red, but mine is maybe a bit more red.”