After Manuel Neuer broke his leg while skiing, Bayern Munich immediately launched a search for the goalkeeper that will deputize for the 36-year-old while he recovers. However, there’s one big catch: Neuer still wants to be first choice when he returns for the new season, which means that should Bayern sign someone on a permanent basis, they would either have to loan them away (like what they did with Alexander Nübel who is now at AS Monaco) or sell them when Neuer’s back.
I couldn’t help but think that maaaybe Neuer is hurting the teams he plays for, let’s look at the reasons why:
Goalkeeping or gatekeeping?
Earlier it was said that Neuer firmly wants to become the first choice keeper when he returns, and while that may be seen as a sign of a fighting spirit, he doesn’t consider those who want to play even if he is fit. That is exactly what happened with Nübel, who wasn’t promised the number of games he would share with Neuer and was loaned out to satisfy the 26-year-old’s hunger to play games.
Bayern’s other options, whether it’s Dominik Livaković or Yassine Bounou or Yann Sommer or whoever, also wouldn’t want to challenge Cristiano Ronaldo on whose bench seat is the warmest.
Allies or not?
The reason why Nübel is hesitant to go back is due to the presence of goalkeeper coach Toni Tapalović, with whom he hasn’t had the best relationship during the former’s time here. Tapalović, however, is the one who made Neuer the legend that we know today. So if Bayern want Nübel back, they’d have to say goodbye to Toni for the first time since 2014. In other words, Neuer has indirectly blocked off Nübel’s path to the first team.