Will Manuel Neuer get fit in time?
The upcoming international matches against Spain and Brazil clearly show that the World Cup is just around the corner. National coach Joachim Löw will refrain from experimenting with the nominees. It seems as if a tribe is crystallizing. Is Manuel Neuer part of the line-up in two months without the 2018 game?
26 players nominated Löw for the two test matches against the major football powers Spain and Brazil. A look at the squad shows: The national coach already has a rough squad for the World Cup in Russia in his head. None of the 26 players would be surprised if they were in the line-up for the World Cup. 23 men are allowed to take part in the title defence mission. While there is an absolute surplus of suitable players in the midfield, the situation on the goalkeeper position is somewhat different. Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Kevin Trapp and Bernd Leno have been nominated for the two friendly matches. Manuel Neuer, number one in the budget, is still missing because of his broken metatarsus. Many worry about the world goalkeeper. Will he get fit for the World Cup? Since September he lacks any playing practice, a comeback is not even in sight.
number one without playing practice?
The opinions about Neuer are divided. While one half says he doesn’t need any games to get back to his top level immediately, the other half feels that this is unfair. Marc-Andre ter Stegen consistently performs well at FC Barcelona and is celebrated week after week by the Spanish press. Should Neuer be preferred to ter Stegen despite a long injury and almost no effort in calendar year 2018? Neuer himself only became the German number one in 2010 because Rene Adler injured himself shortly before the tournament. The Bavarian star is regarded as the best goalkeeper in the world, and has been for years. It’s quite possible that he will be 100% again in the first game after the long break. Ter Stegen would have to take a seat on the bench despite his outstanding performances this season. Many fans find Neuer’s special treatment unfair, because there wouldn’t be such an exception for field players.
What role does the Champions League play?
Good chance that the performances of both goalkeepers will be the tip of the scales in the European business. Manuel Neuers Bayern as well as ter Stegen and FC Barcelona are in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, both clubs will go against Sevilla and AS Rome as clear favourites in the round. Will they continue to perform very well in the premier league and could they even help the Catalans reach the title they aspire to? This constellation would give him the best chance of becoming number one in the German goal. With Neuer, it remains to be seen when he will make his comeback for the FCB. Especially since representative Sven Ulreich is playing an outstanding season. It’s hard to imagine that the Bavarians would back Ulreich in the high phase of the international phase in order to guarantee new playing practice in the most important games of the year. In the end, Jogi Löw and Andreas Köpke decide who will be the better choice for defending the title.