Bayern Munich: Joshua Kimmich is the most versatile squad player

Joshua Kimmich, Bayern Munich (Photo by ANP Sport via Getty Images)
Joshua Kimmich, Bayern Munich (Photo by ANP Sport via Getty Images) /

Joshua Kimmich set the world alight in the return fixture against Dortmund.

“Wow”……. that was all I could say as I saw Joshua Kimmich‘s audacious lob creep past Roman Burki’s fingers and into the goal. It would’ve been a spectacular goal any time of the week but to do it the high-pressure environment of Der Klassiker, against your team’s perennial rivals and current title challenger makes what Kimmich accomplished did even more impressive.

If Messi or Ronaldo had done it, it would’ve been gushed about for generations to come. It was a goal of precision. Of composure. Of class. Yet, Kimmich has always shown those very characteristics in whatever position he is playing in. Whether it be as a central defensive midfielder, central midfielder, right-back and centre-back.

One of the most underrated players within Bayern’s star-studded squad, the likes of Lewandowski and Muller will always take the applause, but without Kimmich effortlessly plugging the holes that have appeared in Bayern, would they really be top of the Bundesliga and with a 2-0 lead against Chelsea in the Champions League? I think not.

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He was their saviour when Benjamin Pavard was injured and they had no backup and when they were leaking goals weeks in and week out, he came in and shored their defence.

What differentiates Kimmich from those other players who plug in gaps for their team ( I’m looking at you, Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia ) is Kimmich does not merely plug in gaps for Bayern, he takes to that new position like a duck does to water, he does not look out of place wherever he plays and that is the true meaning of versatility, to be able to play in a different position as if it’s your natural position.

For those that think it’s easy to play 3 or 4 positions as Kimmich does and to the standard that he does it in, I’m going to give an example of just how hard it is. West Ham vs Manchester United, Scott McTominay played in a back 3 alongside Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof, another brilliant move by Jose Mourinho which culminated in a 3-1 loss for United…

Anyway, the main point here is that McTominay, whilst wasn’t to be fully blamed for United’s abysmal showing on that day, looked unsure and above all tactically wasn’t on the same wave-length as his defensive partners, end result being a shambolic defensive performance.

A testament to the versatility of Kimmich is that unlike McTominay, he doesn’t draw the attention of the crowd or the pundits, you don’t notice him at all until you check the starting line-up and realised that Joshua Kimmich was playing at centre-back.

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Joshua Kimmich is so versatile that I’m waiting for Bayern to deploy him as a striker, you may laugh but its a highly realistic possibility. He certainly has high enough football IQ to be able to make the runs required as for finishing, his lob against Dortmund shows that should be the least of potential worries.