Per Tz’s Philipp Kessler, Marc Roca has made the decision to forego the Tokyo Olympics this summer with Spain so that he can stay in Munich and get a full preseason under his belt with new manager Julian Nagelsmann.
While the Euros start this Friday and run through July 11th, the soccer fixtures in the Olympics run from July 21st to August 7th, so had Roca made the decision to play for Spain in the tournament, he’d be missing the heart of Bayern Munich’s preseason. Of course, last season he didn’t have a preseason because of the stretched nature of the transfer window running through the fall as a result of fixture scheduling changes because of the coronavirus pandemic. He joined Bayern from RCD Espanyol Barcelona on October 4th, 2020.
Marc #Roca will unter Trainer Julian #Nagelsmann beim #FCBayern neu durchstarten. Damit er die komplette Vorbereitung mitmachen kann, hat der Mittelfeldspieler sogar der spanischen Mannschaft für die Olympischen Spiele in #Tokio abgesagt. @tzmuenchen— Philipp Kessler (@kessler_philipp) June 7, 2021
In addition to choosing to forego the Olympics with Spain, Roca has been putting the time in at the gym. He wants to work on getting stronger and has been working on high weight sets to try and gain strength and muscle mass. He’s been spending a decent amount of time in recent weeks working on this weight training and has been making noticeable muscular gains, causing people on social media to speculate that he’s been hanging around Leon Goretzka a lot. Bayern’s #18 packed on a serious amount of muscle during the peak of the coronavirus lockdowns last year.
In addition to his weight training, Roca has and will be working on speed and agility training to help with his explosiveness:
Aktuell legt #Roca den Fokus auf Maximalkraft-Einheiten. Dadurch soll der Körper robuster werden. Seit dieser Woche absolviert er das #FCBayern-Lauftraining. Ab 15. Juni arbeitet er auch an seiner Schnellkraft. Das soll seine Explosivität verbessern. @mano_bonke Foto: B-ENGAGED pic.twitter.com/KltbbcWEYG— Philipp Kessler (@kessler_philipp) June 8, 2021
While opinions might be split amongst the Spanish footballing base on Roca’s decision, it was a big commitment and statement of intent from the 24-year-old. Despite being a player that Hansi Flick did like, he only made a total of 11 appearances across all competitions last season for Bayern. Flick had taken extra time after training sessions to work one on one with him of defensive positioning and quick distribution, but he was never really able to work his way into the squad on a more regular basis.
Nagelsmann will have certainly taken notice of Roca’s decision to stay behind and work on his training, wanting to get a full preseason with the club. This will also be a fantastic chance for Nagelsmann to get a closer look at him as the majority of Bayern’s squad won’t be back from their Euro 2020 commitments with their countries until the end of July, or perhaps even later for those that progress to the later stages of the competition.