Talking Tactics: Tuchel needs quick wins in Bayern hotseat
Bayern Munich shocked many by firing Julian Nagelsmann during the international break and bringing in ex-Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain boss Thomas Tuchel.
Tuchel has been thrown in at the very deep end at Bayern at a crucial point of the season where every game is vital.
The Bavarians are involved in an extremely tight Bundesliga title fight and through to the quarter-finals of both the DFB-Pokal and Champions League.
Ahead of their crunch match with league leaders Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, we examine the challenges Tuchel faces.
Bayern were not willing to wait until the end of the season to hire a coach they have admired for many years.
Tuchel earned a glowing reputation for his work at Chelsea, where he took the reins in January 2021 before winning the Champions League that May.
He outwitted Pep Guardiola's Manchester City in the Porto showpiece and Bayern will now come up against the Citizens in the last eight of Europe's elite competition next month.
The 49-year-old will also face a familiar foe in his opening game as he welcomes former club Dortmund to the Allianz Arena.
Bayern have been uncharacteristically inconsistent this season but sit only a point behind their Klassiker rivals with all to play for on Matchday 26.
Case for the defence
A first priority for Tuchel will be to shore up Bayern's defence.
The Bundesliga champions kept only two clean sheets from Nagelsmann’s final 10 league games, with costly errors at Borussia Monchengladbach and Bayer Leverkusen resulting in two defeats.
In Tuchel's first 14 competitive outings at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea conceded only two goals.
So expect the German coach to address the defensive third first, adopting his preferred back three with a wealth of options at wing-back, including Joao Cancelo and Alphonso Davies.
The hosts will sit deeper on Saturday than has been the case in recent weeks, with a more possession-based approach compared to Nagelsmann's high-risk strategy.
Though Bayern have comfortably outscored every Bundesliga side this season, they are not the same force since Robert Lewandowski left for Barcelona.
In the summer, it would seem certain that the club will look to secure a new striker, which could help to facilitate a switch back to a 4-2-3-1 formation over the longer-term.
For now, Tuchel must find a solution from within. He will need to get Sadio Mane firing, with the injury-hit Senegalese ace not hitting the net since October 29.
The magic Tuch
At his introductory press conference, Tuchel said: "Bayern is about winning, also about the way of winning.
"The squad is one of the most talented and best in Europe. You're a contender for every trophy with these players. It's also a big commitment."
Well versed with the pressures of managing Europe's elite, Tuchel will know he has no time to waste in returning Bayern to their expected level of dominance.
With a wealth of quality at his disposal and a track record of success, expect his new side to come out punching in what could be a thrilling battle with BVB.