De Ligt on what it’s like to play with ‘competitor and teammate’ Kim Min-jae
Matthijs de Ligt talks about what it was like to play with ‘competitor and teammate’ Kim Min-Jae.
Bayern Munich defeated Mainz 3-1 in the eighth round of the 2023-24 German Bundesliga at the MEWA Arena in Mainz, Germany, at 1:30 a.m. ET on Sunday. With the win, Munich is in third place with six wins and two draws (20 points), while Mainz is in 17th place with two draws and six losses (2 points).
The center back line consisted of Kim Min-jae and De Ligt. Thomas Tuchel seemed to have settled on Kim Min-Jae and Dayo Upamecano as his starting center back combination this season. This was disappointing for De Ligt. De Ligt was one of the best center backs in Europe during his time at Ajax and Juventus. He was a solid starter alongside Upamecano before the arrival of Kim Min-jae, but he found himself on the bench more often than not.
In the early part of the season, even when he did start, he played as a defensive midfielder. This led to reports that De Ligt was unhappy with the situation. De Ligt seemed to turn things around when he and Kim Min-Jae started at center back against Bochum and even scored a goal. However, an injury put his head down.
Upamecano was also injured. It was more serious than De Ligt’s. This was a big problem for Munich, who only had Kim, De Ligt, and Upamecano as first-team center backs. Luckily, De Ligt was able to recover during the international break. De Ligt rejoined the starting center-back pairing with Kim Min-jae and held Mainz to one goal in the 3-1 win.
Speaking to German ‘Kicker’, De Ligt said: “It wasn’t an easy game. I had problems walking recently (due to a knee injury) and now I can play again. I didn’t play much before I came back from injury. I’m still not used to the tempo of the game. If I had a good rhythm, I wouldn’t have gotten the yellow card. I was able to recover through today’s game,” he said of his situation.
He also talked about how it felt to share the starting lineup with Kim Min-Jae for the second 바카라 consecutive match. “We had a good game,” De Ligt said. He has the ability to work well with me, and the more we play, the better (our chemistry) will be,” he said.
Tuchel added: “I hope De Ligt can play well in the UEFA Champions League (UCL) match against Galatasaray. With the injury to Upamecano, we have no choice.” “It shows the thinness of Munich’s squad. The main players will play non-stop,” but “I think de Ligt will be happy.”