In modern football, there are very few players whose name becomes synonymous with a club.
Given the transfer-heavy times, even a club steeped in tradition like Bayern Munich can look into the future and see where it could have some trouble establishing long-term club icons.
That is an issue for the future, however, as the present still features Thomas Müller in Bavaria. Being able to cement long-term fixtures at a club is one thing that Bayern Munich president Herbert Hainer would like to see more of moving forward.
“Players like Thomas Müller, Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger with their Bavarian or even Munich roots are the highest of emotions for FC Bayern. But even a guy like Jamal Musiala learned early on on campus what it means to play for FC Bayern,” said Hainer in a recent interview with Bayern Munich club magazine “51”.
Surely, losing a club-developed player like David Alaba — along with other long-term veterans like Javi Martinez and Jerome Boateng — creates an issue with maintaining the squad’s identity. Hainer is hoping to offset that in the future by developing and retaining some of the club’s youngster on campus.
“We have to keep going down this path and we have some promising talent to hope for. (Jamal) Musiala showed the way, and we are optimistic about the development of Chris Richards, whom we loaned to Hoffenheim and who became a regular there at the age of 20,” said Hainer.