Niklas Süle (l.) merits a place in Bayern Munich's back four, according to former striker Patrick Andersson (r.). - © imago/ DFL
Niklas Süle (l.) merits a place in Bayern Munich's back four, according to former striker Patrick Andersson (r.). - © imago/ DFL

"I really rate Niklas Süle" - former Bayern Munich striker Patrik Andersson

Bayern Munich legend Patrik Andersson says he would like to see Niklas Süle partner Dayot Upamecano at the heart of the record champions' defence under Julian Nagelsmann.

Süle started 16 Bundesliga matches over the course of an injury-interrupted 2020/21 season, with Jerome Boateng and David Alaba Hansi Flick's most used central defensive partnership.

The decorated duo - along with Flick and defensive specialist Javi Martinez - have since left the club, however, while 2018 FIFA World Cup-winning defender Lucas Hernandez has returned from UEFA Euro 2020 with a knee injury.

Assuming new coach Nagelsmann remains faithful to the four-man defensive set-up that has served Bayern so well down the years, Andersson believes Süle is the ideal partner for new signing Dayot Upamecano, who blossomed into one of the world's best young centre-backs on Nagelsmann's watch at RB Leipzig.

"What's important is that there's clarity about the starting 11 from the off, especially in defence," Andersson - the goal-scoring hero of Bayern's last-gasp 2000/01 Bundesliga title win - told SportBild.

"I'd like to see Niklas Süle and Dayot Upamecano as the centre-backs. I really rate Süle. He was very consistent before his injury. He's very quick, despite his size. Continuity can only aid player development."

Like Upamecano - who made his Leipzig debut at 18 and joins Bayern with 112 Bundesliga appearances to his name - Süle has also played under Nagelsmann at senior level.

Freshly minted Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann (l.) took Süle's (r.) defensive game to new heights at Hoffenheim. - imago

Having made his professional breakthrough in 2012/13, Süle entered the wider conversation as part of a Hoffenheim team Nagelsmann transformed from relegation into UEFA Champions League contenders in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

He duly became the first Hoffenheim academy graduate to represent Germany when he debuted on 31 August 2016, before winning the FIFA Confederations Cup and moving to Bayern the following summer.

Watch: Niklas Süle's formative Hoffenheim years

Süle has since got his hands on four successive Bundesliga titles, two DFB Cups, the Champions League, the FIFA Club World Cup, three DFL Supercups and the UEFA equivalent.

The 25-year-old, who earned his 32nd senior cap as a substitute against Portugal at Euro 2020, is just six matches shy of 200 in the Bundesliga. He has one year left on his current Bayern deal.