In Europe’s five biggest leagues, seven players are scoring at least one goal a game.
They include Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappe and Lautaro Martinez. The other four play in the German Bundesliga: Jonas Wind (Wolfsburg), Serhu Guerassi (Stuttgart), Victor Boniface (Bayern Munich) and Harry Kane (Bayern Munich).
There isn’t a specific defensive weakness or a single flaw in Germany’s top division – instead, each of these players is scoring goals in a different way.
Ahead of season seven, here’s how (and why) they’re achieving their goals…
Serhou Guirassy, Stuttgart
Stuttgart’s form from the end of last season to the Champions League draw today suggests something is happening. Head coach Sebastian Hoeness was appointed in April and has been sharp since the reform; Stuttgart are second, with only champions Bayern and leaders Leverkusen scoring more goals.
Guirassy is a vivid emblem of that change. At the age of 27, he split his spell between France (with Lille, Amiens and Rennes) and Germany (Cologne), easily the most prolific spell of his career. He scored 11 Bundesliga goals last season. If he scores against Wolfsburg this weekend, he will equal that at the start of the fall.
His touches are up roughly 20 percent per game and he passes the ball more and more accurately. His creativity also took off: he averaged 1.04 key passes per 90 minutes in the 2022-23 season. That more than doubled to 2.59 in this first round. These changes describe the improvement of the team, but also a more confident player.
The most memorable of his 10 goals against Darmstadt was his touch, turn and shot from the edge of the box. He was the one who best demonstrated how dangerous Guirassi could be, even without the slightest threat. There was no shooting angle and no space, and still thundered the ball into the top corner.
Durability is an issue for Guirassy and Stuttgart, but this streak has shown just how prolific a goal scorer he can be.
Harry Kane, Bayern Munich
Goals: 8 (3 penalties)
It is still doubtful that Bayern have the means to create open play opportunities for Kane. They don’t revolve around him the way Tottenham Hotspur did, so he has to insinuate himself into their movements as they develop, which will lead to less chemistry in these early weeks.
Alphonso Davies created the goals against Werder Bremen and Augsburg, both of which were well finished, while Kane benefited from a clever move against Leverkusen when he scored from a corner. He’s producing as much as he needs to be effective and critical media, but he’s yet to deliver a signature performance.
Three of the eight goals have come from free kicks, and his goals from open play per 90 minutes (3.41) are less than Guirassy’s (4.30) at Stuttgart, while Victor Boniface (6.56) is half that of Leverkusen. It’s not simply player productivity. not yet.
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One caveat is that Bayern are without Jamal Musiala for half of their Bundesliga game. It is expected that the relationship with Ken will increase in strength. Another issue is the instability in Thomas Tuchel’s midfield which is affecting all areas of the pitch.
It seems inevitable that Kane will finish his Bayern debut with a healthy goal return, but so far his voice has made it seem like he lacks that punch.
Jonas Wind, Wolfsburg
Niko Kovac’s Wolfsburg have improved but have few distinguishing features. They are not straightforward and their construction is not particularly methodical. They also aren’t creating many chances from open play, which in context is worthy of the Wind’s seven-for-six record.
His goals this season can be divided into two categories: instinctive and predatory and chances he helped the Wind build up. His double penalty against Eintracht Frankfurt last weekend involved a rebound and a header from a few yards out. So it’s early, but the wind is magical. He’s not the one to beat.
The 24-year-old came through the academy at highly-regarded FC Copenhagen. His third in the Bundesliga this season (but only his second full campaign since joining Wolfsburg in January last year) is the highest goal return. He scored five in the final months of 2021-22 and then six the following season.
One of his distinguishing features is his movement, but when Wolfsburg build attacks around the box, it will be fun to watch how the wind responds. He often uses the created spaces, or to receive or dismiss a pass, or to break the ball with capital.
His double against Cologne in August depended on that. Two fringe combinations with attacking midfielder Matthias Svanberg, two quick moves to cover Cologne, two goals for him and three points for Volsburg.
In Germany, there are strikers with more obvious strengths. There are bigger, faster and stronger players, sure, and more style. But Kovach Wolfsburg now seems to understand well how to use the wind; He stands out even more during their best attacking moments.
That being said, they haven’t scored many goals this season. Only nine, and wind accounts for two-thirds of them. But with Croatian craftsman Lovro Majer signed in the summer and the talented Patrik Wimmer still at the club and playing on the right side of the 4-2-3-1, it’s easy to imagine more efficiency as the season progresses, and Wind more lucrative. from him.
Victor Boniface, Bayern Munich
Goals: 6 (1 penalty)
Boniface is above his goals; He is very versatile and observant. He can play deep and carry the ball forward or create with it, but he can slip beyond the defensive line. He is a threat.
That breed has made Leverkusen’s complex football both consistent and dangerous this season. Manager Xabi Alonso encourages attacking moves to build tactically, and Boniface’s versatility suits this pass-oriented approach.
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Of all the centre-forwards in the Bundesliga, he is arguably the most difficult to cover one-on-one as he moves past defenders with ease. FBref.com rates his 2.78 successful takedowns per 90 minutes at one percent.
However, the goals have become typical of the number 9. Leverkusen created plenty of chances for Boniface – and himself – but most of his shots were taken from inside the box and between the posts.
Outside of the run and finish against Darmstadt, those goalscoring opportunities were the result of moving beyond the defensive line, reacting in midfield or, like Heidenheim, rolling and rolling past the defender on the edge. Box.
He’s the only player on this list who hasn’t hit the expected goalscoring numbers, and it reflects the quality of the chances being created for him, but he’s still developing into a full-time goalscorer.
Boniface may have been the top scorer in the Europa League last season (playing for Belgium). Union Saint-Guillois)But he had never before reached double figures in a league season in either Belgium or Norway (where he played for Bodo/Glimt).
As was the case against Bayern last month, Boniface can sometimes rush chances in a way that a clean scorer is not, but that is a harsh criticism.
This was his first season in a major European league and the rate of adaptation was very fast.
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(Top photos: Getty Images)