Bayern shrug off Mane absence to win Japan friendly

AFP , Saturday 29 Jul 2023

A Bayern Munich side missing the departing Sadio Mane beat Kawasaki Frontale 1-0 on Saturday with a goal by substitute Josip Stanisic in the second game of their Japan tour.

Bayern Munich
Bayern Munich's Bouna Sarr (2R) controls the ball during the football friendly match between Japan's Kawasaki Frontale and Germany's Bayern Munich at the National Stadium in Tokyo on July 29, 2023. Photo: AFP


Forward Mane was left out of the squad for the friendly, with the German champions saying on Twitter that he was in talks with another club "and is therefore not in the line-up today".

The 31-year-old former Liverpool star appears set to become the latest high-profile player to join the Saudi league with a move to Al Nassr, according to several media outlets.

Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel refused to elaborate on the club's statement when speaking to reporters after the match in Tokyo.

"We are still in the transfer window," he said.

"I would like to see what's going on and wait and see how things will happen."

Mane has two years remaining on his Bayern contract but endured a disappointing first season since joining from Liverpool last summer.

The Senegal forward found the net 12 times in 38 games in all competitions, but missed part of the season with injury.

Bayern also suspended him for one game for "misconduct" in April on account of an altercation with teammate Leroy Sane after a defeat to Manchester City in the Champions League.

Kim Min-jae made his eagerly-awaited Bayern debut against Kawasaki, with Tuchel saying he was "very happy" with the South Korean defender's first showing for the German champions.

"He played a good match, not only defensively but offensively," Tuchel said.

Tuchel praised Kim for training "very hard", pointing out that "everybody is very tired, so it was not too easy."

Young France striker Mathys Tel led the line for Bayern and had three glorious opportunities in a 60-second spell between the 10th and 11th minutes.

Leroy Sane also threatened with his searing pace for Bayern in the first half, but he was unable to make a couple of presentable chances count.

Tel then miscued from another glorious opening in the final minute of the first half, skewing wide from six yards after Serge Gnabry's low cross from the right.

Stanisic was one of nine changes made by Bayern at half-time and he broke the deadlock in the 57th minute.

The 23-year-old maintained his composure after a crisp one-two with fellow substitute Ryan Gravenberch, calmly slotting beyond Kawasaki's replacement goalkeeper Naoto Kamifukumoto.

Next up for Bayern is a friendly in Singapore against Liverpool on Wednesday.

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