The iron-clad defense of Kim Min-jae (27, Bayern Munich) has been named “der kaiser” again.
Kim played full-time against Manchester United in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League (UCL) Group A match of the 2023-2024 season at the Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany, on Monday (June 21), helping Bayern Munich to a 4-3 victory over the Red Devils.
With the three points, the Bavarians sit atop the group and are well on their way to the title.
Kim Min-jae was at the center of a back-and-forth affair between the two teams. The Bavarians took a 2-0 lead into halftime through Leroy Sane in the 27th minute and Serge Gnabry in the 32nd minute.
But after United pulled away with Rasmus Höwelun’s debut goal four minutes into the second half, Munich extended their lead to 3-1 with a Harry Kane penalty kick. Matthijs Tel scored a late consolation goal for the Bavarians as United pulled one back through Kasemir in stoppage time. Casemiro struck again just before the end of the match, but the game was sealed.
Kim Min-jae preserved the one-point lead. With his quick feet, Kim sealed off the United flank with his dedicated defense. In the third minute of the second half, he caught up with Bruno Fernandez and put his head on the ball, which was a clear indication of his defense.
Earlier, in the 25th minute of the first half, while marking Hoi Lun, Kim made a spectacular move by turning his body to cut off a long pass with his heel. He didn’t just intercept the ball, he accurately passed it to his teammate.
His tackling was perfect. Kim Min-jae intercepted two consecutive passes in the second 20 minutes and won possession with a strong and accurate tackle. He then passed the ball forward to help his team attack. It was an aggressive defense that is typical of Kim Min-jae.
With Kim at the back, Munich could attack United with confidence. With Dayo Upamecano up top, he was alone at the back, but he was rarely in danger. United pressed and built up with ease. His accurate long passes to the strikers were a bonus.
Germany’s Bavarian Football named Kim “Emperor” after his performance against Leverkusen. “He battled brilliantly against United’s attackers and cleaned up all the passes in the back,” the publication praised.
“He did a good job of dealing with United in the early stages when Munich were locked in. Then, when Munich took control of the game, he erased their strikers from sight. He is certainly living up to the hype.”
Hoi Lun, who joined United in a £72 million deal this summer, also struggled in front of Kim. He also emphasized that while the team conceded three goals, “there was very little he could do in any of them,” and that there was nothing to blame for Munich’s mistakes.
According to soccer stats site Footmob, Kim completed 92% of his passes (97/106), had 118 touches on the ball, created one chance, had six clearances, one interception, one tackle, and one shot block. His rating of 6.7 was also first among defenders. His touches, interceptions, and clearances were the most on the team, and he never allowed an opponent to break through on the dribble.\
Napoli, on the other hand, started their European campaign with a win, but were criticized for not playing the same defense as last season.
Napoli won the first leg of their UEFA Champions League (UCL) Group C match of the 2023-2024 season 2-1 at the Estadio Munizipal de Braga in Braga, Portugal, on Tuesday (Sept. 21).
Napoli took the lead in first-half stoppage time through Di Lorenzo. Hvitsa Kvarachelia’s long cross from the left was headed in by Osimhen. Di Lorenzo then finished with a left-footed volley.
However, Napoli conceded a late equalizer through Braga in the 39th minute. Rodrigo Salasar’s early cross was met in the box by Bruma, who turned and headed home.
Napoli scored the winner in the 43rd minute with a dramatic own goal. Piotr Zielinski cut in from the left and sent in a powerful cross that Braga defender Siku Niakate cleared off the line and into his own net.
With the win, Napoli moved to the top of a group that included Braga, Real Madrid and Union Berlin. However, critics were harsh. In particular, the absence of Kim Min-jae came back to haunt Napoli.
“A lucky own goal was bad luck rewarded for countless wasted chances,” wrote Giovanni Scotto of Il Roma on social media, “Napoli are paying a heavy price for Kim Min-jae’s departure and the lack of certainty in defense. Mistakes abound.”
“Napoli are suffering too much in defense. They are a little better in midfield, but there is no longer any sign of last season’s football. You could feel what Rudi Garcia was thinking, but Napoli are not able to express it.”
“Unfortunately, Hvitsa didn’t shine like he usually does and Victor Osimhen was a little unlucky. We can see some improvements, but we need to find consistency in our play. We need patience and two or three good results to better adapt to a shocking coaching change.”
On the day, Napoli started with João Jesus and Amir Rahmani at center back. However, Rahmani was replaced by Natan after Napoli took a 2-1 lead. Jeju was Kim Min-jae’s backup, while Rahmani was Kim’s defensive partner. Natan is a defender who was brought in as a replacement after Kim Min-jae’s departure.카지노사이트
However, Rahmani received a 6.2 rating and Jeju received a 6.7 rating on the day, the first and second lowest ratings on the team. Napoli is still groaning over the loss of Kim Min-jae.