Soccer

Thomas Tuchel and Bayern Munich take ‘energy’ from Leipzig win

Bayern, eight points off the top of the Bundesliga, face Freiburg on Friday.

Thomas Tuchel has targeted back-to-back Bundesliga wins
Thomas Tuchel Thomas Tuchel has targeted back-to-back Bundesliga wins (Richard Sellers/PA)

Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel wants to build on his side’s last-gasp win over Leipzig when they travel to Freiburg on Friday.

Harry Kane’s stoppage-time winner last Sunday ended Bayern’s run of three straight defeats in all competitions.

“It’s been a good week,” Tuchel told a press conference. “A win always helps everyone, particularly a last-minute win. It’s given us confidence and a positive general feeling.

“We’ve had a good week, the messaging hasn’t changed much. We’re carrying on. Tomorrow it’s about being ready. The focus is more than ever on the here and now.”

Bayern remain eight points adrift of Bundesliga leaders Bayer Leverkusen so their season probably hinges on overturning a 1-0 deficit against Lazio in the second leg of their Champions League meeting on Tuesday.

But Tuchel insisted: “The match takes place before Lazio. It’s a completely different match.

“The best preparation for one match is a successful performance. We have to take it up a notch. We managed a little uptick against Leipzig, which has given us energy.

Leroy Sane is an injury doubt
Bayern Munich v Manchester United – UEFA Champions League – Group A – Allianz Arena Leroy Sane is an injury doubt (Nick Potts/PA)

“I’m confident we’ll win tomorrow, but it’ll only happen with full focus. It’s always difficult in Freiburg.

“They’re very flexible, very variable and do a lot of running. They carry the ball well down the right with (Ritsu) Doan. (Vincenzo) Grifo on the left tries to be a threat with crosses from deep.

“They also use long balls with up to seven attacking players. We need answers and that’s what we’ll prepare the team for. It’s always passionate in Freiburg, too.”

Tuchel will hand a late fitness test to former Manchester City winger Leroy Sane.

“Leroy always wants to play,” he said. “He’s someone who can tolerate pain extremely well. He’s felt something in the last few weeks.

“Maybe he’s been grinning and bearing it a bit too much. I get the impression he’s not completely free. He has a lot of aches and pains and is paying a bit of a price for the overload.

“We need to find the best solution for tomorrow. He’s doing an individual test now. If he can, we’ll take him into the final training session.

“We’ll see if he can make the squad tomorrow and perhaps help us from the bench. We have to look from day to day.”

Matthijs de Ligt is suspended in Freiburg so Kim Min-jae will come into the side.

“Serge Gnabry is back in training but it’s too early to take him,” added Tuchel.

“Alphonso Davies is also back in training, he’ll be in the squad. Kingsley Coman, Sacha Boey and Noussair Mazraoui aren’t available.”

It was announced on Thursday that centre-back Dayot Upamecano will miss next week’s home Champions League last-16 clash with Lazio following his red card during the 1-0 first-leg defeat.

Bayern also announced later on that they are considering appealing against a UEFA decision to ban their fans from their next Champions League away game.

The ban has been triggered by the governing body after fireworks were thrown by Bayern supporters during the game against Lazio in Rome, having initially suspended the punishment for two years when imposing it for similar offences in October last year.

“This is a very harsh decision,” Bayern chief executive officer Jan-Christian Dreesen said. “We have requested the reasons for the decision and are looking into the possibility of an appeal.”