Bayern Munich’s Julian Nagelsmann recently made the decision to go vegetarian about a month ago, but hadn’t publicly said anything about it until the pre-match press conference ahead of the 4-1 win over SC Freiburg. Prior to deciding to make the culinary switch, Nagelsmann held the nickname of “Hacki” because of his love of meat loaf and how often he would prepare that meal for himself and his coaching staff (Sport1).
When he was asked about the decision, Nagelsmann explained that he no longer wishes to consumer anything from animals that have eyes and that it also wants to help protect against the environmental impact meat processing plants have. “I don’t want to eat creatures that have eyes anymore. This (environemental protection) is a point that is important to me and should be important to everyone. That made me give up meat and fish,” he explained.
It was Nagelsmann’s video assistant analyst Benjamin Glück that had originally given him the “Hacki” nickname for his fondness of meat loaf, so the Bayern manager jokingly suggested that it should be Glück that finds him a new, vegetarian-appropriate nickname. “I have to ask Benji (about a new nickname). Maybe he’ll call me Erbsi or Vegan Hacki now,” Nagelsmann joked.
Despite the tactical dietary substitution, if you will, Nagelsmann did say that he won’t entirely refrain from preparing his signature meat loaf dish for others that aren’t vegetarian, though he does sort of feel that might defeat the purpose just a bit. “I’m a little wistful that I’m losing the nickname now. Of course I would be so selfless as to make the meatloaf again, but then it defeats the purpose of my switch to vegetarianism,” he explained, taking slight issue with the idea of buying meat at the supermarket. “I have no problem with it when it’s in front of me. I don’t start drooling either. I don’t have any sense of sacrifice and it’s not a problem for me,” he added.
For the time being, while some Bayern players like Serge Gnabry have also become vegetarian in the past, it’s not a requirement at FC Bayern. A trend setter himself, Nagelsmann has already made headlines on numerous occasions for things like riding an electric skateboard around Sabener Strasse, playing intense rounds of paddle ball against his coaching staff, and even once referring to himself as the “title hamster.” He keeps us on our toes and now that he’s gone public with his dietary changes, it will be interesting to see if another golden steak gate situation a la Franck Ribery happens at the club because they say that becoming vegetarian is a big missed steak.