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Who will play as Bayern Munich's 'false nine' under Guardiola?

With Pep Guardiola reportedly ready to play a similar system to his time at Barcelona who could play the 'Lionel Messi' role?

Not content with being the best team on the planet last season FC Bayern Munchen have now decided to go that step further and employ the man possibly considered the best manager of his current crop.

Pep Guardiola was announced as the new Bayern manager from next season in January and in those six months he has been studying the team intently as they went on a rampaging run of form in 2013 that lead to a magnificent treble.

He also watched them decimate the team he had moulded at Barcelona; squishing them to mush in a stunning two-legged Champions League semi-final performance.

And judging by his press conference he has also been on an intense German language course.

Sehr gut Herr Guardiola; Ausgezeichnet!

But while the old adage is ‘don’t fix what it isn’t broken’ Guardiola has already reportedly started considering doing things differently at the club.

There are rumours he will utilise Javi Martinez in defence rather than midfield; and so far in training he has been reportedly been experimenting with a ‘false nine’.

The position, made famous by Lionel Messi, is a difficult one to master and would also spell the end of Mario Mandzukic and Mario Gomez as regular starters at the club.

But who could play the role?

We take a look at four nominees.

Arjen Robben

Coming off the back of arguably the best season of his career Robben did start his career more central at PSV Eindhoven.

He certainly has the dribbling ability but it is all a little lop-sided. His favour for the left-foot could make him too predictable in the more crowded area in the centre of the pitch.

Keep him out on the right where he has more space to cut inside onto that deadly left-peg of his.

Franck Ribery

The Frenchman is certainly less choosy over which foot he uses and also had an excellent campaign last season.

He has the passing ability to play in the role as well as the relentless attitude to keep plugging away until it comes off.

But does he provide more either in the midfield or wing positions? Possibly.

Mario Gotze

The stand-out candidate has to be Bayern Munich’s newest recruit. The former Borussia Dortmund player has many attributes similar to Messi including his insatiable one-two’s and eye for a pass.

Does he possess the requisite dribbling ability?

I would say yes; but at Dortmund he simply never truly had to showcase it with the likes of Reus, Blaszczykowski and Lewandowski running in behind.

Personally, I think Gotze has to be the man; if he can score the goals.

Thomas Muller

The hard-working forward probably doesn’t get the credit he deserves but of the four on offer he possibly provides the greatest goal threat; and isn’t that what number nines are for? False or not!

Who do you think would best play the false nine role at Bayern Munich?

image: © cooperman13

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