Joshua Kimmich has been kept out of Bayern Munich’s squad for quite some time now, and the midfielder will not be able to play in Der Klassiker either. If Kimmich is to play against FC Barcelona, he has to test negative for COVID-19. The team is anxiously awaiting Kimmich’s return, as he is an essential player in this squad. Although Corentin Tolisso has provided a serviceable replacement for Kimmich in the meantime, replacing Kimmich is almost impossible.
Kimmich’s absence on the pitch has had a significant impact on the team’s performance and success. Needless to say, that impact has been a negative one. Since Kimmich’s debut for Bayern in 2015, the 26-year-old has played in 270 games with a win rate of 78%. Without Kimmich, Bayern achieved a win rate of just 64%.
Kimmich is one of the best versatile players in the world. He can come up with quality performances in the holding midfield role, right-back, and centre-back positions. Considering his ability to play the killer pass, Kimmich could do well in the attacking midfield role.
The German has been anchoring the midfield for Bayern with ease. He has also functioned well as a deep-lying playmaker. His heatmap indicates that he has a high work rate as he is ever-present in the midfield, whether it is to win the ball when his team is out of possession or to distribute the game when they have possession.
The above visual shows us his passing and progression stats for the Champions League season. The metrics indicate that he has been significantly better than the median league value for the same stats. Kimmich has played an average of 77.90 passes per 90 minutes and has been a very efficient passer as he has completed 91.59% of his passes. He has played 15.13 passes into the final third per 90 minutes and always has an eye for the forward runs that his teammates make. He has also attempted 2.27 through passes per game and is better than 94% of the players in the tournament for this.
His pass map indicates that he has seen a lot of the ball in the four games he has played for Bayern. He has a wide range of passes and can provide short passes to keep possession of the ball as well as long diagonal balls towards his wide forwards into the final third. He has also attempted to play a number of passes into the penalty area and has generated a decent xT from these passes.
Kimmich has formed a great understanding and chemistry with his teammates and knows what type of movement each player will make. For a midfielder to know this is very important as they can play the right pass for the run that his attackers are making. The above visual shows us the xT generated from his passes to individual players. Kimmich has the highest xT from the passes he has made to Robert Lewandowski. He also has a high xT from the passes made to the wide forwards.
Kimmich was originally a right-back when he came to Bayern and has always been brilliant when it comes to winning duels to recover possession of the ball. The above visual shows that the German has won most of the duels he has attempted in the midfield area. He has attempted more ground defending duels, but has also won a couple of aerial duels. He has attempted to win the ball higher up the pitch in the opposition’s half, as he has competed for 50-50 challenges in the final third area.
Kimmich is currently out of the Bayern squad as he has been tested positive for COVID-19 and will most probably miss out on the last group stage game against Barcelona. More solid performances from Joshua Kimmich should be expected in the round of 16 of the Champions League in the coming year. With his peak years of career still ahead of him, Kimmich is going to get even better for club and country.