Alongside Sven Ulreich, Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting was one of Bayern Munich’s oldest players in the squad that faced FC Koln in the preseason friendly loss last Saturday. Omar Richards was the third oldest player at 23 years of age.
Choupo-Moting normally serves as Robert Lewandowski’s backup, but during this preseason under new manager Julian Nagelsmann, he has taken on more of a mentor’s role in what’s a very young squad before all of the Euro 2020 internationals get back from holiday. Choupo-Moting even wore the captain’s armband for the first time for Bayern to start the 3-2 loss to Koln in the Black Forest.
“It’s fun to play with the young players. You can see that there is a lot of quality. I’m in the mood for the season,” Choupo-Moting had said following the FC Koln friendly (Az). In particular, Armindo Sieb, Torben Rhein, Omar Richards, Taylor Booth, and Lucas Copado had impressed in the friendly and were lauded post-match by Nagelsmann. Choupo-Moting, along with everyone except for Sieb and Rhein, was subbed off at halftime, but he got to get a good 45 minutes in with a majority of the youngsters in the squad as well as having Joshua Zirkzee start alongside him.
For Nagelsmann, having a veteran like Choupo-Moting in the squad while the majority of the first team is away has been a huge help in integrating with most of the players that are currently training at Sabener Strasse. In that sense, Ulreich is also a great presence given his experience at the club. It’s also certainly helped his personal standing with Nagelsmann. At times last season, it looked as if it just wasn’t going to work out for the Cameroon international at Bayern, but he stepped up and scored goals in crucial periods when Lewandowski wasn’t playing, cementing the club’s decision to ultimately give him a new deal.
“In addition to his sporting quality, Maxim is also important as a type for our team. He will help us to achieve our goals in the next two years,” Hasan Salihamidzic had said of Choupo-Moting last month.