Robert Lewandowski says Bayern Munich's success comes before individual glory after admitting he has changed his game this season.
Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski says his goals tally this season has been impacted by his decision to develop a more selfless approach. The Poland international has scored 17 goals in 24 Bundesliga games this season but is some way short of matching his hauls from the past three campaigns with just eight matches remaining after Sunday's clash with Mainz.
Lewandowski was also powerless to prevent Bayern from exiting the Champions League at the last-16 stage in midweek, failing to score in either leg against Liverpool. He did, however, become the Bundesliga's highest-scoring foreign player by taking his tally to 197 and surpassing Claudio Pizarro with a double in a 6-0 win over Wolfsburg last weekend.
While the 30-year-old is still motivated by scoring goals, he admits he has tailored his approach to become a more rounded team player. "I'm playing differently this season, I've developed some more," he told Welt am Sonntag. "You can see that in my assist statistics. I've got 10 this season, which is the most I've ever had, so I'll probably top that by the end of the season. I did a lot of reflecting and thinking about how I can best help the team. I saw what I felt the team needs from me and told myself: 'I'll do everything that helps the team.' It may be that I've scored a fewer goals than in recent seasons, but that doesn't mean I'm having a bad season. My duties on the pitch have changed. I now concentrate on the entire team, not just myself. The team comes first. I try to open up gaps and create chances without losing my own hunger for goals. I always want to score goals."
Introducing Robert #Lewandowski , the top scoring foreign player in Bundesliga history!— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) March 10, 2019
@lewy_official | 281 games, 197 goals
@pizarrinha | 466 games, 195 goals
Giovane #Elber | 260 games, 133 goals #LewanGOALski #MiaSanMia pic.twitter.com/PLWZ4rtKrT
Bayern drop a place to second
Bayern were leapfrogged at the Bundesliga summit by Borussia Dortmund on Saturday after their last-gasp win at Hertha Berlin, but Niko Kovac's side can return to top spot with a victory against Mainz.