Niko Kovac, a former long-established captain of Croatia national team, is known for his iron mentality and tactical minded skills. Nico Kovac managed Bayern in the year 2001 along with his brother Robert Kovac as a Assistant coach, but was not able to mark his place permanently as he left Bayern after two seasons in the summer of 2003.
Eintracht Frankfurt, under Niko Kovac won DFB- Pokal last season beating Bayern Munich 3-1 in the finals to clinch their 5th title. Niko, catching eyes of Bayern Munich, was the top contender to be a new manager for the reigning champions as Jupp Heynckes left Bayern Munich in the 17-18 season. On 13th of April 2018, the club announced Niko Kovac as the new manager and officially took over the charge on 1st July 2018.
How is Bayern shaping up in the league?
Niko did not had a successful career as a coach which led to a “Pinch of salt” in the minds of the fans. But the fans switched to the greener side of the grass as the team was able to dominate their opponents and win those matches.
Talking points :
Wings Play– Niko Kovac, underlining his idea of attacking from the wide flanks, their 2 fullbacks Alaba and Kimmich, provide those essential crosses into the 12 yard area, making the use of the heading calibre of Lewandowski, Muller as well as Goretzka. This is the key concept that Niko utilizes from both the flanks hoping one of them would deliver the ball into the dangerous area which will trouble the keeper. The below picture shows how Bayern Munich utilises its left side of the flank to put some dangerous crossings.
Locking the opponents– Bayern Munich doesn’t like it when the ball is not with them. They chase down the ball with higher intensity, thanks to Niko’s smart positioning. Niko mostly allows a maximum of 4 players to beat down the opponent and therefore recovering the ball even before opponents start their move. His players know exactly where to position themselves to avoid quick counter attacks and to make a brick wall of defence as soon as they sense any threat.
Quick counter attacks-Bayern Munich is known for its quick counter attacks as soon as the opponent loses the ball. The built-up structure by Niko helped Bayern Munich to continue their way of pressing the opponent with rapid counter attacks and the likes of Lewandowski and Mueller upfront, their midfielders creates numerous advantage within seconds.
Having played 20 matches so far this season Bayern Munich stands 3rd on the points table with 42 points. Niko, with his tactical approach to every game, alongside with individual quality players did not seemed to be struggling against any team. Coming after an “alarming” loss against Bayer Leverkusen Niko Kovac’s side will be looking to move up to 2nd position as the face FC Schalke in the matchday 21.