Arrived from VfB Stuttgart to Bayern Munich in the summer of 2019 with his status as world champion, Benjamin Pavard (24) had ideally benefited from the repositioning of Joshua Kimmich in the midfield. Becoming one of the most used players by Niko Kovac then Hans-Dieter Flick (47 matches, 4 goals and 7 assists), he was reinforced in his status. Indeed, the former Lille had convinced by asserting himself as the ideal counterpart of Alphonso Davies on the right flank of the defense. Thus, after having been invaluable in the quest for the various titles acquired by the Rekordmeister, Bouna Sarr arrived to occupy the role of understudy.
A surprising transfer, but relieving for Benjamin Pavard who remained the indisputable holder while an arrival of Sergiño Dest would perhaps have reshuffled the cards. Anyway, the Frenchman could be confident. However, his early season performances were complicated. Injured during the summer with a ligament injury, he had missed a good part of Final 8, but still played 8 minutes against Olympique Lyonnais in the semi-final. Used from the first league matches, it seemed outdated. His physical condition was not optimal.
This is what he explained in an interview for Telefoot : “As I came back early, I had a worse shot, in my head I was not happy. I didn’t feel good physically and I knew I wasn’t good, not necessarily. It is often said that when things are not going, you have to shut your mouth and take refuge in work, that’s what I did. I worked a lot with my physical trainer and today I am doing a series of performances. “ Although optimistic, the Frenchman is still in a complicated exercise. Indisputably, he went from a player who has only played five of the last ten Bundesliga matches for which he was fully suitable. Proof of its irregularity.
Moreover, his coach Hans-Dieter Flick had not failed to point the finger at him after a very complicated match against Mainz where he left at the break (led 2-0, Bayern won 5-2 after the exit of Benjamin Pavard). “The changes did us good, they were finally right. We didn’t have too many situations on the outside, especially on the right side. It is important that we make fewer mistakes on the sides. In the second half, Joshua Kimmich showed how we should do on the sides ” had not failed to affirm the German coach.
Benjamin Pavard must now react
Aware that the absence of real competition did not help Benjamin Pavard, our colleague from Fussball Transfers Lukas Hörster is quite skeptical of the Frenchman’s performance. “I am not convinced of Pavard. For me, he has never been the ideal fit in this position as he is not as good in combination and offensive power as his teammates. Of course, he has his qualities, he is above all a good defender and he is dangerous on set pieces with the head. Maybe the level he has shown this season is his normal level (despite some defensive mistakes). Last season he was part of a perfect team and this is not the case this year ” he explained to us.
Currently affected by Covid-19, Benjamin Pavard will not play in the Champions League this Tuesday against Lazio. However, it is his presence in the eleven that is now in question. In recent matches, Niklas Süle has occupied the position and is more reassuring in defense. A sector in difficulty this season. With 31 goals conceded in 22 matches, Bayern Munich have the sixth best defense tied with Werder Bremen and Borussia Dortmund.
“The reason for the many goals conceded: Bayern played a very risky style, but perfect last year, very high on the pitch and everything worked. This year they have tried to keep going, but if someone is a few yards shorter somewhere there are holes and it is easy to create big chances with just one pass. And with the sequence of matches, the concentration to play this risky style is not here for the moment ” underlines our colleague. Victim of his concentration jumps, Benjamin Pavard experienced his first zone of turbulence at Bayern Munich. He will have to react quickly or else slowly, but surely, exhaust the credit he acquired last year.