FC Bayern Munich without Thomas Müller? Actually unthinkable. But soon it could be time – if you listen to the current rumors. Newcastle United want the German international. But he might want something completely different.
A rusty brown steel sculpture stands on a small rise south of Newcastle. With mighty wings, the “Angel of the North” surveys Geordie Land up there in the inhospitable part of Great Britain.
Back in 1998, the cost of the colossus was around 800,000 British pounds or the equivalent of around 1.2 million euros. It is said to have stood in the countryside south of Newcastle for at least 100 years.
The work of the artist Antony Gormley belongs to the region like the Statue of Liberty to New York or like Thomas Müller to Bayern Munich. However, the 32-year-old international is now said to have been targeted by Newcastle United.
This is not surprising on the one hand, but also quite amusing on the other. What should Thomas Müller do in Newcastle? What should Thomas Müller do with the richest club in the world?
Earn money. Earn a lot of money. That at least is the obvious answer and possibly the only plausible answer. Because: In terms of sport, the situation in Tyneside is even bleaker than the eternal fog that seems to hang over the old industrial city and is only illuminated by the lights of St. James’ Park, home of Newcastle United.
Bastian Schweinsteiger also left Bayern Munich
It is true that the wildest transfer dreams are blooming there as a result of the takeover of the “Magpies” by a group of investors who are not only close to the state of Saudi Arabia, but are actually recruited from the country’s elite. Ousmane Dembélé should come, Niklas Süle too and actually every player in the world.
But Thomas Müller is not “every player in the world”. Muller on Newcastle United just remains too outlandish to even think about it.
Thomas Müller should change once. At that time Niko Kovac, not Julian Nagelsmann, was at the helm. In his modest way, he not only put the veteran, who had just been thrown out of the national team by Joachim Löw, on the bench.
And Manchester United prepared an offer like Manchester United always prepares an offer when there is an interesting player on the market. It had even worked once before. When Bastian Schweinsteiger was not yet a character in a novel, but a relatively freshly crowned world champion whose career at Bayern had come to a dead end. But Müller is not a Schweinsteiger. While Schweinsteiger also defined himself through his internationality, as is well known, Otterfing is enough for the interpreter of space. There he is happy.
Niko Kovac and one of the biggest misjudgments
At that time, Niko Kovac not only sawed off Müller, but also questioned the quality of the squad. “You can’t try to drive 200 km/h on the Autobahn if you can only do 100 km/h. You have to adapt what you have,” he said shortly before his dismissal in Munich, and was therefore in favor of it advertised the prize for one of the biggest misjudgments in recent football history.
First Kovac left and Hansi Flick came and then Bayern’s unbelievable title year began. A cornerstone: Thomas Müller, for whom speed was never as important as an eye for space.
… and Thomas Müller’s contract is about to expire
So Müller returned to the starting XI and, more than two years after Kovac, is still one of Bayern’s most important players. He’s always in the starting eleven, he’s almost always involved in at least one goal and he’s rarely overheard on the pitch.
In the ghost game years, he established himself as a player-coach whose commands not only echo through the empty stadiums, but also get into the heads of his teammates. He served as an inspiration for current Bayern Munich coach Julian Nagelsmann as he philosophized about the introduction of headsets for players to take football to a new technical level.
In 18 months, Müller’s current contract of employment in Munich will expire. He will be older then, almost 34, and at some point his time as a footballer will end. And if we’re being honest, we have to put the Newcastle rumor against exactly this background.
“Whether it’s Manuel Neuer, whether it’s Robert Lewandowski, whether it’s Thomas Müller – they are all greats of this club, all players who can also be credited with the successes of the last decade and current successes,” explained Bayern board member Oliver Kahn on Wednesday. “It goes without saying that we talk to all these players to understand what they are thinking and what they want. Of course that’s at the top of our agenda for the foreseeable future.”
But unlike Neuer, who is said to be about to be extended, and unlike Lewandowski, who sometimes flirts more and sometimes less aggressively with a change, Thomas Müller has so far remained quiet.
The current rumors about Newcastle United are actually just a small hint to the club. Thomas Müller is also still there. And it belongs to Bayern Munich, just as the angel of the north belongs to the industrial region around Newcastle and the Statue of Liberty to New York.