This is the first of maybe two (if I’m lazy) but probably more season votings. The title really says it all, I narrowed down the list to five players but will add an “Other” option. However, if you vote for that, I have to explicitly request you to use the comments section (it takes less than a minute) to tell me who you think was the biggest disappointment. Here are the candidates:
Breno – Once touted as one of the biggest center back talents, Bayern were willed to make a risky €12m investment for the Brazilian. After a year or two of getting used to European football, climate and culture, he was supposed to take over the FCB defense for years to come. This season, after a good spell in Nuremberg that unfortunately resulted in an injury, was another chance for him to establish himself as a regular. Once he fully recovered from the injury, he got chances to impress. Way too often, he didn’t. So now, a year later, the situation hasn’t changed at all apart from one thing: the next chance will be his last in Munich. Late starter or bust? This season didn’t make me think it’s the former.
Diego Contento – The amount of disappointment his season delivered depends on what expectations you had. Personally, I didn’t expect a lot so I’m not that frustrated. Still, there was some hope. He’s young, German and the only one who learned playing the position that was this club’s weak point over the last years. But what happened? He lost the starting job (if he ever had it) to Danijel Pranjic, a midfielder, and Luiz Gustavo, a midfielder and apparently soon-to-be center back. Contento got his chances and constantly showed exactly what we already knew: great speed, decent offensive support, atrocious defensive positioning and tactical behaviour. Regular left-back? Not for Bayern anymore.
Hamit Altintop – One brilliant performance in a Champions League semifinal match v Lyon was enough for him to get another 1-year contract with Bayern. While you can’t seriously criticize anyone for losing the race for a spot in the lineup against Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery, you surely can for not even winning that race when both are out with injuries. That was Altintop’s big chance to prove that he’s capable of replacing one of them if needed, to show that he’s worthy of playing on such a high level. What can I say? He couldn’t impress, again. Of course you can argue that this winger position in Bayern’s system isn’t really his cup of tea, that he needs a four-man midfield, preferably in diamond shape. But he knew that before he signed the new contract. Goodbye.
Toni Kroos – Germany’s biggest talent, at least that’s what he was just a few years ago. Too young to crack the lineup for Bayern, he joined Leverkusen on loan. It was there, under Jupp Heynckes, when he finally proved that he can be more than an eternal talent. Before the season, he returned to Munich with what should be tons of confidence. But where could he play? First, he lost the CAM duel against Thomas Müller. Then he got a chance as winger but failed to impress, mainly because he lacks the speed. It was the central midfield where he seemed to make it. However, he never really started to impress or add anything of value so he lost that spot, too. He’ll have to work very hard to become a regular again.
Miroslav Klose – Where to start? Replaced by Ivica Olic last season, impressed us by saying he lost 5 kg for the World Cup after a club season that including making it to the final in two tournaments, horribly failed to impress with Olic used as winger/injured and Gomez all but in England. Did he gain those 5 kg after the WC? Is he such a patriot that he can’t motivate himself for anything that’s not the national team? Whatever it is, it was another shitty season. With all due respect, I think it’s fair to say that nobody missed him when he didn’t play. Klose has become absolutely dispensable for Bayern, one can only hope that he tries his luck somewhere else.