In the book “Thinking Fast and Slow” by Nobel Prize-winning author Daniel Kahneman, it is said that people think based on two basic streams of thinking, temporarily called “Systems 1 and 2.
“System 1” is quick, instinctive, and emotional; “System 2” is slower, more analytical.
Those who look at Bayer Leverkusen’s recent achievements and evaluate this as a strong team that can do great things this season often think according to “System 1”.
If analyzed more carefully, Leverkusen is lagging behind itself at the beginning of the season. This morning, Leverkusen did not play much better than Qarabag. They only won by a minimal margin and the goal came from a somewhat lucky penalty kick in the last minutes.
The expected goals created by the German representative is 1.67. If excluding the penalty at the end of the match, what Xabi Alonso and his team did on away soil was not too impressive.
Previously, in the 3-2 win over Hoffenheim last weekend, despite scoring 3 goals, the expected goals they created was only 0.92.
Obviously, Leverkusen still has a long winning streak. Up to now, they have not lost any match this season (winning 14 and drawing 1 in all competitions). However, The challenges that Bundesliga representatives face are becoming more and more numerous.
Leverkusen is not a rich team. Being divided in the Europa League will leave them out of breath in the near future. Stars like Florian Wirtz or Jeremie Frimpong are flying high. They are playing at their peak from the beginning of their career, but young players always have fluctuations in performance. Even in one match, their instability was somewhat shown. Therefore, this is not the person who takes Leverkusen far.
To have achievements, they need real stars spread evenly across all three lines. That’s why Bayern Munich, despite its instability in recent years, is still a force so difficult to defeat.
Not to mention Alonso is still a very young coach. He is creating new vitality for Leverkusen, but it is unlikely that a new school will be created, and even less so that the former Spain midfielder’s career will be smooth.
In 2019, when Ten Hag brought Ajax to the Champions League Semifinals, people also praised this strategist a lot. Some people even think he will be the one to raise Pep Guardiola’s football to a new level.
However, after 4 years, reality proves that Ten Hag still cannot sit on the same table with veteran coaches. When holding a complex team like Man Utd, Ten Hag’s limitations were exposed. A similar story will happen to Alonso if he does not gain experience and realize the limits of both himself and Leverkusen.
Ngoa Long | 10:24 November 10, 2023