Sebastian Rode put together an impressive performance in the draw with Schalke.
Saturday's 1-1 draw in Gelsenkirchen was a prime example that it's tough to win a game when your three attacking players behind Robert Lewandowski are basically nonexistent. However, with five regulars unavailable due to injury, a draw away to Schalke isn't the worst possible result.
There were several good performances to talk about from the match.
Holger Badstuber and Jerome Boateng were solid in defense. Combined, they completed nearly 90% of their passes out of the back and were successful in 5 out of 6 tackles. It was very easy to see that the breakdown of the team's defense occurred when Boateng was subbed off for Dante. The Brazilian struggled to keep up with Schalke's attackers physicality and speed. It wasn't a great showing for him
Another standout performance on the day was from newcomer Xabi Alonso. After what I can only assume was one training session with the club, Alonso stepped right into the role of facilitator and had a stellar match for FC Bayern. The Spaniard completed 90% of his passes, only misplaying 6 of them. The majority of the buildup play started through him as Badstuber-to-Alonso and Boateng-to-Alonso were the two most common pass combinations on the day. It was a great debut for Alonso, and he showed the class and quality that led to the club picking him up after all of the injuries affecting the side at the moment.
Man of the match
With all that said, the man of the match award goes to Sebastian Rode. He shifted into the center of midfield for the match and put a strong foot forward as he continued to silence the doubters of his move to FC Bayern. Rode completed 47 out of 57 passes, including 13 out of 19 in the attacking third. His run to draw Ralf Fährmann out gave Robert Lewandowski an open net for his goal.
If Rode can keep up this level in his performances, it will allow Bayern to give the injured central midfielders time to fully recover from their injuries and not have to rush them back onto the field. Even then, they will have a fight on their hands to force Rode off the field
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