With less than eight minutes to go in extra time in a World Cup final match between Germany and Argentina at the Maracana Stadium in 2014, Andre Schurrle embarked on a powerful mesmerizing run down the left flank, lifted a hopeful and powerful cross towards the six-yard box of the opposition, picking out the awaiting Gotze, the substitute brilliantly controlled the ball on his chest, before volleying the ball into the far corner of the net through his left foot past the helpless Argentine shot-stopper Sergio Romero.
With that goal, Mario Gotze put an end to a final World Cup match that looks to be going towards a penalty shootout with his moment of pure brilliant and quality to win the ‘Die Mannschaft‘ the fourth most prestigious World Cup since their triumph in 1990.
The German victory against ‘La Albiceleste‘ at the Maracana stadium will forever be in the memories of German fans, most especially Mario Gotze who saved the day for the ‘Die Mannschaft’ of Germany.
“Prove that you are better than Messi, you can decide the match today” those were the words of Joachim Low the Germany manager to Gotze before the extra time commenced. Lo and behold the German youngster delivered and proved to be better than Messi et al on the field on that faithful day at the Maracana stadium, in Rio De Janeiro.
So the question we/you should ask is what happened to the young man who was touted to be the face of German football?
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Sometimes the word ‘Ill luck‘ can prove to be very true in some cases, the believes that scoring the ‘Die Mannschaft‘ final goal in a World Cup final match could sometimes bring bad luck or could be true.
With Helmut Rahn’s goal in 1954, which delivered then West Germany first title, and Gerd Muller whose brilliant strike put the Netherlands national team to the sword 20 years later, both players later suffered enervating illness after retirement. Same as Andres Brehme whose penalty won the 1990 World Cup for the German fell into debt and edged closer to bankruptcy, all of these bad occurrences so to speak are a testament that ill-luck happens.
If those unpalatable events that befell the aforementioned players were anything to believe, then we could conclude that perhaps that is what has also befall Mario Gotze. Although he’s still relatively young at 27, a kind of age that has proved to be the peak of almost every football star, but for Gotze as it stands it seems the peak isn’t coming back anytime soon.
The Making Of Gotze
Mario Gotze burst onto the scene in the year 2010-11 thereabout, and during that period it looked like the ‘Die Mannschaft‘ has found the next face of Germany football at the age of 18 years with Borussia Dortmund youth team before he now became an integral member of then Jurgen Kloop led side, that won a back to back Bundesliga titles with Dortmund.
He alongside Lewandowski, Jakub Blaszczykowski, and others helped Dortmund reached the UEFA Champions League final against Bayern Munich.
They lost painfully to the Bavarians, he showed to the world that season he has a lot to offer and the German football at large as he went on to score 12 goals and 14 assists in all competitions, and having done impressively well both in the league and Champions League he was praised by former Dortmund legend Matthias Sammer.
Prior to Dortmund Champions League semi-final match against Real Madrid which eventually got them to the final against Bayern Munich, news broke that the Bavarians had matched the release clause in his contract that will see him move to then Pep Guardiola side, despite signing a 12 months contract extension earlier with the Signal Iduna Parkside.
Moving to a bigger and more ambitious team has always been the dream of every football star, moving to Bayern Munich must have been a dream come through for Gotze. But then, on the other hand, his decline started from Bayern Munich, although he started his campaign debut on a decent note scoring 13 goals, 9 assists and he was involved in a goal in every 107 minutes for the Bavarians.
Looking at how his debut campaign panned out that season, many expected him to leverage on that performance going forward in the subsequent season. Thankfully for him, he did just that and even took that form to the international scene with Germany where he went on to write his name in the history book of German football and also become a hero against the ‘Albiceleste’ of Argentina at the 2014 World Cup final in Rio De Janeiro.
After Germany’s triumph at the World Cup, Gotze’s career was expected to be on a high trajectory, but unfortunately, it was his decline that took a turn. He continued to deliver decent and double-digit number under Pep Guardiola, yet he couldn’t reach the kind of form he showed at Dortmund that prompted Bayern Munich to signed him, even when the manager continuously tweaking his position and the team to his favor, his influence and place in the team gradually continued to wane down.
When Gotze couldn’t get into the team again many were of the opinion that the pressure of playing for a big club in the mode of Bayern Munich compared to where he was coming from appeared to have weighed him down and affected his mentality into getting the managers nod. It looks evident that the manager doesn’t put much faith in him anymore, which made him dropped to the bench.
Another thing that also contributed to his decline was injuries, recall in his debut campaign for the Bavarians, he started just 11 matches in the league as injuries and fitness concerns didn’t allow him to get more playing time. He continued slipping down the pecking order in the team, which comes as a blessing in disguise for some other players of the team.
Gotze’s health condition is also part of the things that contributed to his decline. In early 2017, it was reported that he had been suffering from a Metabolic Disorder, health condition was later confirmed to be Myopathy, a muscular disorder that affects the fibers in the muscles, affecting the muscles not to function correctly in the body system. However, he was treated and was able to train and play again.
As his stint with the Bavarian continues ticking, he still couldn’t get into the team even when Pep Guardiola left, spent the entirety of the season on the bench. Eventually, he was eased out of the team as Bayern Munich failed to renew his contract and he was allowed to move on for free in the summer of 2016 back to his former club.
As human we make some decision that really doesn’t impact our lives positively or favor us sometimes, many would blame Gotze for his decision to move to Bayern Munich, but then the truth is sometimes we make the right one and sometimes it’s could be the wrong one.
The question is how swift can we actually correct the wrong decision made initially, for Gotze correcting his wrong decision was to go back to Dortmund.
His return to Dortmund was more like a ‘Prodigal Son‘ in the holy book when he stated “I regretted joining Bayern Munich three years before” after completing a €26 million move back to Dortmund from Bayern Munich.
Many thought that would be an opportunity for his rebirth, but sadly he didn’t turn out that way, although he scored in his first official come back match against RB Leipzig which they lost, and he was praised for his return to the Westfalenstadion, but since then he has been featuring for Lucien Favre led side sparingly.
The salient question many fans are asking now is, can he escape from the footballing purgatory and return back to the same Gotze we saw under Jurgen Kloop or he’s destined to just continue living off his past achievements?
Because as it stands it’s been confirmed by Dortmund Sporting Director that BVB will part ways with Gotze this summer on a mutual and respectful decision.
However, an imminent renaissance could be possible for him if he decides to reunite with the manager that gave him every opportunity to display his prowess at Dortmund. As rumors have linked the former Bayern Munich star to Liverpool, and to some other top team in Europe.
However, another question is can he command a stampede of invitations from clubs who could likely give him Champions League football?
For him to revive his career back to the top, he needs to join a team that is more suited to his dribbling brilliance, his creative vision, and his top-notch passing ability, then perhaps his career can get a lift.
If Gotze is ready to toe that line, perhaps we might get to see Gotze returns to his swashbuckling, mesmerizing, and Dortmund day’s brilliancy.
Super League: Respect & Dialogue Needed To Restore Normality
The FIFA President emphasized his full support to the European sports model, a successful model of openness and inclusivity, promotion and relegation, disapproving the concept of Super League
President Gianni Infantino has called for respect and dialogue as he expressed FIFA’s strong disapproval of the proposed European Superleague project, and has requested that the concerned parties consider their position in line with respecting the institutions that exist to protect the interest of national, European, and global football.
“FIFA is an organization which is built on values, the true values of sport,” said the FIFA President in his address to the 45th Ordinary UEFA Congress in Montreux, Switzerland.
“It is an organization that is built on our statutes, the statutes that define the institutional framework, with the pyramid, with FIFA, the confederations, the associations, the leagues, the clubs, the players. And at FIFA, we can only strongly disapprove of the creation of a super league which is a closed shop, which is a breakaway from the current institutions, from the leagues, from the associations, from UEFA, and from FIFA, which is outside of the system. There is no doubt whatsoever of FIFA’s disapproval for this.”
The FIFA President emphasized his full support to the European sports model, a successful model of openness and inclusivity, promotion and relegation, and a model that he promoted in his 16 years at UEFA:
“FIFA is here, and I am here today as FIFA President, to bring full support to European football, to UEFA, and the 55 member associations of UEFA and of FIFA, to the leagues, clubs, players, and to fans. To all the fans, all over Europe, and actually all over the world as well.”
“We can see that there is a lot to throw away for the short-term financial gain of some,” the FIFA President added. “People need to think very carefully, they need to reflect, and they need to assume responsibility. They need to think not only of their shareholders, but they need to think about all the people, of all the fans, of all those who have contributed to making European football what it is today. It goes back not only decades, it goes back more than one hundred years. People – with love, with passion, with commitment – have created all this. And we need to protect this. It is our task.”
“FIFA is a democratic organization, an organization that is open,” the FIFA President concluded. “Everyone can bring ideas and proposals, but always with respect for the institutions, leagues, associations, UEFA, and FIFA.
With respect for the history and with the respect for the passion of so many people around the world. I understand as well that on these particular days, emotions are very high, but we need to always keep the line. Football is hope, and it is our responsibility to make hope a reality. So we hope that everything will go back to normal and that everything will be settled, but always with acting responsibly, with respect, with solidarity, and always in the interest of national, European, and global football.”
2 Potential Manager To Replace Hansi Flick
Hansi Flick awesome reign with the Bavarian giant is gradually winding down, as it’s looking likely that he may not further manage the Die Roten next season.
Bayern Munich’s quest to win the Champions League consecutively came to end on Tuesday night, via the UEFA’s away goal rules having lost the first leg at home to Paris Saint Germain in the quarter-finals despite being the better side at home.
The Bavarian giant will now focus on league duty and they’re no doubt the team in pole position to win the Bundesliga, as the 2020-21 campaign is gradually coasting home with fewer games left to be played. In that regard, there is a great need for Die Roten to start preparing for next season administration and coaching wise.
The friction relationship between Hansi Flick and the Sports Director has broken down to such as extent that the manager has decided to terminate his current contract.
Hansi Flick sent shock waves through German football on Saturday after a 3-2 win over Wolfburg which keeps the Bavarian in pole position to retain the league title. Hansi Flick issued a statement about his decision to exit when the current campaign draws to a close.
“I told the team today that I informed the club during the week, after the game in Paris, I would like to terminate my contract at the end of the season.
“It was important to me that the team learn this from me because there was already a lot of hallway rumours going around.
“We’ve done a great job together for almost two years. I’m absolutely impressed with this team, their quality and their attitude.”
He added: “I also want to thank the club that gave me the chance to manage this incredible team.
“This decision was not easy for me. I’m a fan of this club. Gerd Müller, Paul Breitner, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge all were childhood idols for me.
“I’m eternally grateful to the club for the chance they gave me to become head coach here.”
It’s quite evident that a new manager would be appointed to pave way for a new rebuild of the team especially with the looming departure of David Alaba, Jerome Boateng, and Javi Martinez.
Two potential top managers that could succeed Hansi Flick, should he accept Die Mannschaft managerial position.
- Julien Nagelsmann – (RB Leipzig)
Nagelsmann has been rumoured as a possible replacement to succeed not one but many managers in Europe’s top-flight leagues whose future with their respective clubs are not guaranteed. This time around, the 33-year-old has been rumoured to be one of the possible potential managers to succeed Hansi Flick.
It could be argued that Nagelsmann is the tailor-made manager to take over the reins at the Allianz Arena, and there is no doubt RB Leipzig manager would certainly harbour the dream of managing one of the biggest clubs in Europe.
Nagelsmann is presently focusing on the job at hand with RB Leipzig, plus the fact that he’s still under contract with his employers until the end of the 2022-23 season.
With RB Leipzig and Nagelsmann flying high in the Bundesliga in terms of team performances, with next season European football spot already secured, the club’s Executive Director Oliver Mintzlaff may consider letting him leave to join their rival.
However, it’s left to be seen how things would shape up at the end of the campaign.
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- Jurgen Klopp – (Liverpool)
The relationship the German tactician has achieved thus far with Liverpool started in 2015 when he joined the Kop from Borussia Dortmund, since then he has achieved quite an incredible success with the Reds winning their first league title after thirty years and a Champions League triumph.
Liverpool were eliminated early in both domestic cup competitions and failed to progress past the quarter-finals of the Champions League, and it’s quite impossible to say that the Kop will defend their title with their current epileptic form in the Premier League especially when it’s looking done and dusted that the cityzen would clinch the title.
Having used close to six years with Liverpool since he joined the Anfield side, this could be the perfect time for the former Borussia Dortmund manager to take up a new challenge. However, despite Liverpool’s unpalatable 2020-21 campaign, the German has often reiterated that he is in no way finished at Liverpool, despite been link to the Bayern Munich and Die Mannschaft managerial position.
Given his incredible success with BVB, it’s quite evident that he would one day go on to manage either Die Roten or Die Mannschaft. Should Bayern secure the service of Klopp, he would certainly be the right and wise choice for the Bavarian giant.
At the end of the campaign, there would be a breath of fresh air in the Bavarian giant camp, with the new CEO Oliver Kahn taking the mantle of leadership from Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. In that sense, it’s left to be seen if the incoming leader would sanction the appointment of a new manager or stick with Hansi Flick. Only time would tell.