Over at Borussia Dortmund Karim Adeyemi and Donyell Malen are hitting a purple patch of form at the end of the season, which looks like it could potentially help fire BVB to the title. With Bayern stuttering rather than strolling to the league crown, their squad is missing form players- except for one perhaps. Could Serge Gnabry win over his critics and be the one to fire Bayern to the Bundesliga title?
It’s fair to say that Serge Gnabry divides opinion amongst Bayern fans. When the soul searching began and the squad was being criticised during the recent slump in results Gnabry was one of those in the firing line and with talk of the squad being trimmed of it’s excess in the summer, his name was being bandied around as a potential candidate for sale.
Others have faith in the German international and believe he remains a key figure in the club’s attacking arsenal. Cometh the hour, cometh the man as they say and Gnabry has done his talking on the pitch in recent games scoring against both Hertha Berlin and Werder Bremen in recent games to take his season’s tally to eleven (making him the club’s joint top-scorer alongside with Jamal Musiala).
It wasn’t just the goals that were important, but the timing. In both games Bayern were under-par and making hard work of their opponents when the Bayern of old would have steamrollered through them. Gnabry scored the opener on both occasions to get the Rekordmeister back on track.
He now has hit double figures in terms of goals in each of the last seven seasons showing a consistency that is often not attributed to him. He was criticised earlier in the season by sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic for his trip to Paris Fashion Week (he was labelled ‘amateurish’), but the Bayern boss has had to dish out the praise following the players return to form.
“You have to praise him when he’s done something well. He’s important because he’s a player who can score goals” Salihamidzic said.
Speaking after last week’s win at the Weser Stadion, Gnabry was also happy to be back in the spotlight for the right reasons. “The win was extremely important. We knew if we won it would be a good weekend. But we also knew it wasn’t going to be an easy game. The joy in the dressing room was huge. We’ve done our job and got ourselves a cushion. We want to win again next week against Schalke.”
With Eric-Maxim Choupo Moting struggling with injury and Bayern’s attack far from it’s fluent best, the coming into goalscoring form of Serge Gnabry is a godsend for Thomas Tuchel, who looks set to keep Gnabry as a stand-in number nine for the foreseeable future.
The critics of the player, who believe he still has to prove himself, may have to change their minds if he ends up carrying Bayern over the line to the title with his goals in the final spurt of the season.