Friday 10th September 2021
Nagelsmann defends himself vehemently
Koan “Baron of Lies”
By Tobias Nordmann
The reunion comes surprisingly quickly: coach Julian Nagelsmann and FC Bayern meet ex-club RB Leipzig on matchday four of the Bundesliga. He doesn’t expect it to be a celebration of love and joy. He would still like to clarify something.
If so, then that’s the way it is. This is how Julian Nagelsmann sees it. It’s a pretty pragmatic, almost indifferent approach. But it may just be used for self-protection. He doesn’t know what to expect on Saturday evening when he competes with FC Bayern at RB Leipzig (6.30 p.m. in the live ticker at ntv.de). But the coach at least suspects that it could not be a celebration of love and reunion. There might even be whistles. And a lot of them. Because Nagelsmann hadn’t heard particularly nice things about himself recently. At least not from the supporters of the Saxon Bundesliga soccer team. There was a lot of verbal shit going on. And there were wild accusations formulated. The hardest: he was a baron of lies!
The basis of the lawsuit was a sentence by the 34-year-old in which he had announced that he would not take any player with him to Bayern. Now there were even two in the end. And then there were two damn strong ones. Well, anything else would have been very strange for the record champions’ squad planning. Although it didn’t necessarily have the best reputation. Ex-coach Hansi Flick, who has meanwhile taken over the national team, had made this a topic several times. With Dayot Upamecano, the Leipzig chief of defense was brought to Munich. And just before the end of the transfer phase, RB captain Marcel Sabitzer also came. The fact that he also brought his assistant coach with him, it went a little under, but that’s how it is.
“No club has an obligation to sell”
The anger from Leipzig swept across the country. The anger turned into a discussion about the newly discovered poaching gene of the old FC Bayern. Especially in the 90s and 2000s, he always looked around the competition – and grabbed it. Sometimes the activities on the market worked out very well, see Robert Lewandowski, for example, sometimes not, see Jan Schlaudraff or Alexander Baumjohann. However, the transfers are to be assessed differently. Because they did not always follow a meaningful philosophy, but only served to weaken the opponent.
Now the situation with the three Leipzigers is different. And that is exactly how club icon Thomas Müller would like it to be understood. That week he had defended himself against accusing FC Bayern of evil again. “No club has an obligation to sell, see Paris and Mbappé. Like every club, FC Bayern is on the lookout for quality that fits into the budget,” he told “Sport Bild”. And that’s the way it is: professionals from the Bundesliga always have the advantage that they don’t need time to get used to. “There have always been transfers that are hotly debated. And that’s a good thing.” That’s part of the truth. The other goes like this: Munich cannot get involved in the absurd competition between the sheikh and oligarch clubs for the top stars. And don’t want that either.
“Creative solutions” are needed to keep the squad on an international level or something that comes close. The “creative solution” this summer was then, among other things, Leipzig. And to secure the greatest coaching talent, probably the most talented head of defense in the league and an all-rounder in midfield, that not only makes sense, it is just part of FC Bayern’s transfer DNA.
“Hasn’t gone bad for her now”
Nagelsmann, who hasn’t been part of the club that long, would like to see it understood that way. Also in relation to yourself. And so he justifies himself in detail before seeing them again. He now confesses to the statement at the press conference: “If you sit there and say that I definitely want to take six players and seven staff members with me, I don’t know whether every fan will say that’s better. Would the fan clap tomorrow? I don’t think so. ” At the time of his announcement, there hadn’t been a single conversation with someone in charge of Bayern, “that’s why it was not yet clear who you can take with you and what is going on at all”.
Nagelsmann clarified what was (or is) now and emphasized that he had not “exploited” the club. “At Upamecano it was already clear before I arrived. At Sabitzer, you have to say that he decided against extending it. The fact that Leipzig was still collecting money for him has not gone bad for her now.” And after all, with his assistants, they have already come to Leipzig with him. It’s actually a common practice, by the way. It’s not for nothing that coaches almost only speak of the team when they are talking about themselves.
Whistles will “not affect performance”
Will the education help? In any case, Nagelsmann is preparing for the worst possible scenario: “All 34,000 can whistle,” he says, referring to the number of spectators who are allowed to attend his return. But he doesn’t want to let that get too close. No, “it won’t affect my performance”. It is also the case that Nagelsmann assures: “Basically” he is really looking forward to the game, “I had two great years there”. But he would also find a little gratitude or at least a little recognition quite nice. “We have achieved a bit in the two years, and brought a good spirit to the club.”
According to information from the “Bild” newspaper, RB boss Oliver Mintzlaff had a de-escalating effect at a fan event on Wednesday: “I fully understand that a fan is disappointed when good players or successful coaches leave the club. Nevertheless, I appeal I to our fans: Receive Sabi (Marcel Sabitzer, editor’s note), Upa (Dayot Upamecano) and Julian and his coaching staff fairly with us in the Red Bull Arena, “the manager said. “This idea of fair play has always distinguished you and set you apart from other clubs. Julian and his coaching staff did a fantastic job for us, as did the two players.”
What will happen in the stands will also depend very much on how the game goes and how it ends. While Nagelsmann got off the bat with Bayern after a rumble preparation in the league, Leipzig is tormented immensely. Should RB receive their third defeat under coach Jesse Marsch in the fourth game of the season, it should be uncomfortable. He wouldn’t be sorry if RB fell into a minor crisis (also) because of him. “Nobody needs compassion from me,” says Nagelsmann. Honest word. He’s just a koan baron of lies.