Bayern Munich signed Alexander Nübel on a free contract with the intentions to make him the long-term successor to Manuel Neuer. (Plus, when a player at Nübel’s quality is available on a free transfer, you have to try to grab him.) However, Neuer’s return to excellent form in recent years means that playing time is hard to come by in Munich.
At first, Bayern were not in favor of a loan. Sporting Director Hasan Salihamidzic was not in favor of loaning out arguably the world’s best backup goalkeeper. Still, Nübel wanted to play.
“I talked to Alexander,” Bayern CEO Oliver Kahn said. “You could tell that he was not satisfied with the situation. He is at an age where he has to play.”
When the club announced that Nübel would be loaned to AS Monaco for two years under former Bayern coach Niko Kovač, it looked like a big win-win from an outsiders perspective. Nübel gets to play in the Champions League, and Bayern get their “future number one” experience at the top level.
“It makes sense that he plays for a club where he plays in the Champions League.” Kahn continued, “It was the better solution for Alexander and for us.”
Now, the 24-year-old had a little bit extra luck break his way at Monaco. Benjamin Lecomte, who was the club’s number one goalkeeper last season, has picked up an injury and will be out for weeks. The opportunity is now there, and it’s time for Nübel to grab it.