Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Poaching as a “creative solution”?
FC Bayern is making itself unpopular again
Posted by Ben Redelings
Shortly before “Deadline Day”, names like Marcel Sabitzer from RB Leipzig and Matthias Ginter and Jonas Hofmann from Borussia Mönchengladbach haunted the Munich transfer fog. All just pure reinforcements – or is there more to it? Just like in the past.
“Time doesn’t heal all wounds, but it helps to heal.” Jürgen Klopp was visibly battered on the morning of April 23, 2013 – and still tried desperately to keep his composure. During the night, “Bild” announced on its website that the BVB jewel Mario Götze would change to FC Bayern Munich on July 1st of the same year. Just one day later, Dortmund would face Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals. Football Germany suffered in these special hours with Jürgen Klopp and BVB. Because once again Bayern had killed two birds with one stone: stole one of the greatest talents in international football from the annoying competitor from Dortmund and at the same time stole the team that had snatched the championship away from their eyes in the last two years before their eyes Foundations shattered.
In their distress, the Bayern bosses remembered an old recipe for success that had been practiced for many years, which Uli Hoeneß had once introduced and established as a young manager at Munich. The idea behind it was and is actually quite simple: If an opponent is possibly too big, Bayern will poach into their squad and look for a player who not only weakens the opponent, but ideally also enriches the record champions qualitatively. But point two is by no means absolutely necessary. Bayern have already signed players like Jan Schlaudraff from Alemannia Aachen or Vahid Hashemian from VfL Bochum just so that they do not switch to potential opponents. For Uli Hoeneß, this behavior was always completely normal. And so the officials from Säbener Straße managed to catch the up-and-coming competition from Kaiserslautern and Karlsruhe, Stuttgart, Bremen and Leverkusen in good time over the years. This time too, in 2013, Bayern were successful. By moving from Mario Götze (and shortly afterwards from Robert Lewandowski) to Munich, they deliberately and deliberately destroyed the foundation of BVB.
Max Eberl appeased
Back in April 2013, the Gladbach manager, Max Eberl, was still calming down the understandably emerging emotions in the industry. He did not see Mario Götze’s transfer as a major problem: “You can leave it out if Bayern really won five championships in a row.” Since those days in April 2013 there has been no other Bundesliga champion in Germany than Bayern Munich. Presumably, Max Eberl has remained calm again when the rumors about a change of his players Matthias Ginter and Jonas Hofmann to the Säbener Straße emerged. Perhaps, as an old hand in the business, he even saw it as a kind of award that the Bavarians dealt so intensively with his Gladbachers. After all, the new foal had indeed managed to impressively bring the record champions to the brink of defeat in the season opener. Since then, a lot of water has flowed down the Rhine and Borussia in the table has first come back to reality.
Ben Redelings is a passionate “chronicler of football madness” and a supporter of the glorious VfL Bochum. The bestselling author and comedian lives in the Ruhr area and maintains his legendary treasure trove of anecdotes. For ntv.de he writes down the most exciting and funniest stories on Mondays and Saturdays. More information about Ben Redelings, his current dates and his book with the best columns (“Between Puff and Barcelona”) can be found on his website www.scudetto.de.
And the Bavarians? Meanwhile they had reoriented themselves. With Marcel Sabitzer, a key player in last year’s runners-up RB Leipzig has come to Munich. And once again Bayern will kill two birds with one stone – after all, they have already signed the coveted central defender Dayot Upamecano and the trainer jewel Julian Nagelsmann from Leipzig. Obviously, change to the new route taken by Oliver Kahn, who recently spoke out in favor of Bayern having to look for “creative solutions” on the transfer market in the future. In view of the turbulence and sums that are currently dominating the European market, it will come as no surprise to anyone that this new route is apparently a return to old, tried and tested patterns.
The best team wins, not the best transfer
There, at the top of the transfer iceberg, the Bavarians have actually never really participated. When the big players in the industry relax each other’s superstars, then the officials from Säbener Straße are out of the game. The current transfer policy now seems to be an attempt to first of all further consolidate national dominance with relatively manageable means and to get one or the other attractive fish into the net.
That may not seem particularly sexy at first glance and it will not make Bayern more popular in their own country, but it shows a healthy realism and shows a real route for the way to a continued successful future. Because the Bavarians also know one thing: The really big superstars may shine brightly and produce powerful headlines, but in the end (mostly) the team with the best team performance wins. It will therefore be extremely curious to see how Munich will do again this season on the international stage. National should not burn anything anyway – not least after the transfer of Marcel Sabitzer.