Football Features

“He caused no end of trouble” – Player ratings as Bayern Munich retain title advantage over RB Leipzig

By Chris Smith

Published: 19:04, 9 February 2020

The Bundesliga title race is still very much wide open after Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig played out a 0-0 draw on Sunday.

In a tight, tactical affair, both sides had periods of dominance but wasted good opportunities to take a real stranglehold at the top of the table. As such, the two Borussias – Monchengladbach and Dortmund – are the two main benefactors, remaining just four points off top spot.

Here’s how the players rated at the Allianz Arena:

Bayern Munich

Manuel Neuer – 5 – Almost paid the price for a rash moment when Timo Werner rounded him on the edge of his box. A quiet night otherwise for the Germany international.

Benjamin Pavard – 6 – Had a quiet night in an attacking sense as Bayern looked to build more down the left. Wasn’t overly tested in defence in either.

Jerome Boateng – 5 – Started the game in commanding fashion but seemed to lose the pace of the game as it went on. Misjudged a couple of long balls and headed clearances, allowing Leipzig the chance to get in behind the Bayern defence. Replaced by Lucas Hernandez in the 67th minute.

David Alaba – 7 – Made some important blocks and showed composure in possession throughout. Continuing to grow into a more natural centre-back.

Alphonso Davies – 8 – Undoubtedly Bayern’s standout player on Sunday, charging up and down the left flank and causing Leipzig no end of trouble with his pace. That pace was equally effective in defence as the Canada international was able to get back and make a number of important recoveries as the visitors looked to counter.

Joshua Kimmich – 6 – Neat and tidy in possession but was lucky only to receive a yellow card for a dangerous challenge on Werner in the second half.

Thiago – 7 – Was Bayern’s most creative force in an impressive first-half display. Still passed with authority after the break but was unable to really slice Leipzig open.

Thomas Muller – 5 – Worked hard off the ball making four tackles and winning two aerial duels but failed to offer any real threat going forward for Bayern.

Leon Goretzka – 5 – Missed a glorious opportunity in the final 15 minutes, racing in on goal but seeing his effort saved down low by Peter Gulacsi. Didn’t offer anywhere near enough service to the likes of Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry.

Serge Gnabry – 6 – Still not quite at 100 per cent following an Achilles injury and was unable to get into the open field to use his pace. Subbed on the hour mark.

Robert Lewandowski – 6 – Plenty of movement and menace but wasn’t able to get into a truly dangerous position. Won a penalty in the second half but VAR quite rightly overturned the decision for offside.

Substitutes:

Philippe Coutinho (for Gnabry 60) – 5 – Thrown on in place of Gnabry to add more guile to the Bayern attack but completely failed to influence the game.

Lucas Hernandez (for Boateng 67) – 7 – Offered far more composure and stability to the backline than Boateng, who looked worryingly off the pace after half-time.

Kingsley Coman (for Goretzka 85) – 6 – Was introduced for his pace in the final minutes but didn’t have the time to exert his influence.

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RB Leipzig

Peter Gulacsi – 8 – Made an important save early on from Thiago and was on his toes to deny Goretzka down low as the game moved into the final 10 minutes.

Lukas Klostermann – 7 – Made a number of big challenges in a strong defensive performance from Leipzig, helping to keep the reigning Bundesliga champions at bay.

Dayot Upamecano – 8 – With performances like this, you can see exactly why Upamecano is so in-demand right now. The young Frenchman commanded the Leipzig backline with real authority and thwarted Bayern on a number of occasions, making four tackles, two interceptions and a vital goal-line clearance.

Marcel Halstenberg – 7 – Looked excellent alongside Klostermann and Upamecano, defending resolutely on the floor and commanding the aerial battle.

Tyler Adams – 5 – Was given a hard time by Davies, especially in the first half. Recovered somewhat after the break and became more involved in Leipzig’s build-up play, but Adams has certainly had better days since swapping MLS for the Bundesliga.

Marcel Sabitzer – 7 – Didn’t influence the game as we know he can and fluffed a really good opportunity, firing Adams’ rebounded shot high, wide and handsome. Despite his relatively quiet attacking performance, Sabitzer was excellent defensively, making a match-high eight tackles.

Konrad Laimer – 7 – Worked hard alongside Sabitzer and stifled the Bayern midfield in a tense, tactical affair.

Angelino  – 6 – Wasn’t overly tested defensively as we saw so often in the Premier League with Man City. Offered up some dangerous deliveries from set-pieces.

Dani Olmo – 5 – Some bright touches early on but faded quickly and became quite wasteful, completing just 42 per cent of his passes before being replaced by Patrick Schick.

Christopher Nkunku – 7 – Used his pace to expose Boateng after the break and would have had an assist to his name if it weren’t for Werner’s wastefulness.

Timo Werner – 4 – Werner has been absolutely lethal this season but none of that killer instinct was on show here, with the Germany international missing a couple of huge chances. His slice wide from Nkunku’s squared pass just after the hour-mark was particularly poor.

Substitutes:

Patrick Schick (for Olmo 69) – 6 – Replaced Olmo to offer Leipzig a more direct threat but seemed to spend more time using his physicality to defend his own goal.

Ademola Lookman (for Nkunku 82) – 5 – Attempted to emulate Nkunku with his threatening pace but lacked the final delivery.

Yussuf Poulsen (for Werner 90+3) – N/A – A change of personnel in the final minute made for no other reason than to waste time.