One of Bayern Munich’s biggest recent headaches has been how to move on from Manuel Neuer. Though nobody at the club wants to see Neuer leave, the legendary German shot stopper turns 38 in just over two months at the time of writing. And nobody can avoid Father Time, not even Manuel Neuer.
Bayern signed Alexander Nübel, Yann Sommer and Daniel Peretz in recent years but Neuer has reclaimed his starting spot everytime. Which begs the question: Does he need to be replaced any time soon? Is he just immortal?
Well, maybe not the immortal but Karl-Heinz Rummenigge does open the door to the idea that Neuer could keep going for multiple. He even opines that the former Schalke goalkeeper will be able to play at the highest level for about another half decade. Speaking to Sport Bild on Neuer’s longevity, as captured by @iMiaSanMia, Rummenigge said: “Experience for goalkeepers is as important as the quality on the pitch, and there’s often a special rule when it comes to age. While outfield players mostly retire at their mid 30s, good goalkeepers can keep up at the highest level well into their early 40s.”
Gianluigi Buffon is of course the gold standard for goalkeeping longevity, but even the ludicrously successful Italian goalkeeper had to drop to Serie B by the time he was 43. Can Neuer really keep this up for that long? If he could, it would be a real godsend for Bayern.