The Real Football Man

When is winning the Bundesliga not enough? Carlo Ancelotti will have the answer to that one after his departure from Bayern Munich on Thursday. A win ratio of just under 70% at the Allianz Arena in addition to two German Supercups and the aforementioned domestic title obviously counts for very little in Bavaria as the former Chelsea boss was seemingly stuck in the shadow of Pep Guardiola.

Pep Guardiola failed to win a Champions League title which many expected him to deliver and although Ancelotti’s Bayern side lost to eventual winners Real Madrid in last season’s competition it was more the manner in which they lost to PSG which would have asked the most questions.

A decision to not start Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben and Mats Hummels obviously backfired as the PSG Globetrotters strolled to a second successive group stage win in this year’s edition of the tournament. Quite why BT Sport were assuming that this trio of players were being rested is beyond me, quite simply Ancelotti got this one wrong.

That was in addition to his side throwing away a 2-0 lead at home to Wolfsburg at the weekend, one that sees them not sitting on their usual perch at the top of the Bundesliga. To sum up how poor the quality has been in the Bundesliga both Dortmund and Hoffenheim sit above the German giants and they themselves have already lost to Tottenham and Liverpool respectively (Best league in the world and all that)

So without the barnstorming start to the campaign as per usual the pressure has been mounting on Ancelotti and it seems as if it all got a bit too much for the A.C. Milan legend as he said Ciao to Bayern and left the club in a relative state of flux.

All the hard work of last season is ultimately forgotten once the new season comes around but for Bayern it has been a one-horse race all too often as they have won the last five German titles at a canter, so when you’re not even winning a one-horse race then alarm bells will obviously start to ring.

But it really a return to the top of the European hierarchy that the club are demanding as they look for a first Champions League title since they beat their domestic counterparts Borussia Dortmund in the 2013 final which was hosted at Wembley.

There are obvious parallels between themselves and PSG as they are unquestionably the biggest clubs in their respective leagues and Wednesday would have been the real acid test as to the quality of the two squads and just how realistic their continental prospects are in this campaign.

Bayern certainly will not be the last team to be heavily beaten by the French all-stars this season but that was one defeat too many for the Munich outfit and the board will have been planning some form of machination in the background.

So it begs the question was Ancelotti jump before he was pushed, it certainly looks that way or maybe the Allianz Arena hotseat just became a bit too warm for him as the prospect of European success looks set to evade the former Real Madrid manager.

But a fair criticism is that Ancelotti does seem to lose his teams pretty quickly, a more than spectacular start is then followed by an almighty drop off in form. It is almost as if the parameters he sets himself can they not be adhered to and the only natural conclusion is to move on to pastures new.

Bayern can almost manage themselves what with the quality they have at their disposal but they are going to have to name a new manager eventually. The question is who will be the next man to try his luck at returning the club to European glory.

Julian Nagelsmann is the favourite to get the job on a permanent basis next season as Willy Sagnol takes interim charge until maybe as long as the end of the season. To put this into perspective Nagelsmann is 30 whereas I am 33 and spend too much time in Wetherspoons. Turns out playing Football Manager can pay off in real life.

Until next week