This is the top eleven of the seventh game day

Schalkes Naldo celebrated a strong comeback into the starting eleven. Two English teenagers whirl through the defensive lines of the league. Leipzig surpassed – and from FC Bayern is missing any trace. Here is the SPON11.

This is the top eleven of the seventh matchday

Schalkes Naldo celebrated a strong comeback into the starting eleven. Two English teenagers whirl through the defensive lines of the league. Leipzig surpassed – and from FC Bayern is missing any trace. Here is the SPON11.

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Naldo has been playing in the Bundesliga for more than 13 years, and when he was fit, he had his regular place. In the past weeks, however, the 36-year-old from FC Schalke found himself on the bench. Twice in a row he sat outside in the Bundesliga for 90 minutes. In the 2-0 draw against Düsseldorf he was allowed to play again; he acted as if he wanted to prove it to his coach Domenico Tedesco: I belong in the Stammelf.

Naldo scored well in the categories “Balleroberung” and “Abwehrstärke”, especially the Schalker Defensive seemed insurmountable. From the most dangerous playing field zone it did not permit a conclusion. Results in second place for Naldo in the ranking behind Leipzig’s Willi Orban.

It was almost a year ago that Marcel Halstenberg made his debut in the DFB team under Joachim Löw. After 90 minutes in the test against England, there was no further nomination, also because the 24-year-old lost half a year due to a cruciate ligament rupture. Meanwhile he seems to be in top form again. Against Nuremberg, Halstenberg’s performance was among the best that the Bundesliga had experienced in the recent past in the position of Außenverteidiger.

Halstenberg conquered the most second balls on his position and he drove the Leipzig offensive game. Three goal-shots testify to this, one of which led to a goal. Freiburg’s Lukas Kübler, who stood out defensively, follows in second place. Close behind: Gladbach’s Oscar Wendt.

No defensive midfielder was better than Marcel Sabitzer on Matchday 7. The Leipziger shot two goals, afforded himself few false passes, prepared two conclusions and received many points for the fact that RB played offensively and defensively equally strongly. It is arguable that Sabitzer will be categorised as sixth. Actually, the Austrian is an offensive player. Against Nuremberg he was on average closer to his own central defenders than to the strikers. Therefore, the SPIX algorithm automatically placed him in the defensive midfield. Prime Slots is not one of your ordinary online casino game. Great new feature that this ace casino brings out is the high level of interaction offered only for you online casino player.

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The fact that the Premier League has long since outperformed the Bundesliga in sporting terms is only doubted by those who haven’t had the pleasure of watching matches from both leagues one after the other lately. The pace is faster in England, as is the density of top players. One result: the young English players are increasingly trying their hand in Germany. And the Bundesliga can profit from this.

Two examples: Reiss Nelson and Jadon Sancho. Nelson, 18, came to Hoffenheim on loan from FC Arsenal. There he played against Frankfurt for the third time in the league – and already scored his second goal. Nelson also impressed with high pass security in the opposing half and very good values in the area of “ball conquest”.

Dortmunds Sancho is defensively weaker, but when he plays, goals are scored. At the 4:3 against Augsburg, he provided an assistant and two other goal-shots. For the 18-year-old it was already the eighth goal participation in this Bundesliga season. He only played for 214 minutes on the pitch. On average, he participates every 27 minutes.

Of course we also have to talk about FC Bayern. Three midfielders were assigned to the offensive against Gladbach. All showed an average performance. James Rodríguez was the one who liked best, but he still lacked a lot about his top form. Thomas Müller and Leon Goretzka were disappointing, at least in terms of what they usually achieve.

Leipzig’s Kevin Kampl is at the top of the rankings, having been replaced by Nuremberg at 4:0 for the break. By then, he had already collected nine shots, including one goal and an assistant.

“Zeit Online” recently reckoned highly: If he continued to score as before, Paco Alcácer would score 186 goals in the Bundesliga at the end of the season. Of course, that’s not meant very seriously, but the BVB striker’s goal quota is impressive. The 25-year-old has been substituted three times so far, always scoring for Borussia. Against Augsburg, he scored his Joker goals number four, five and six in a total of 81 Bundesliga minutes. Also in SPON11: Frankfurt’s Luka Jovic, who was directly involved in both goals in the 2-1 draw against Hoffenheim.

VfB to become more refreshing, more aggressive and more dangerous to goals

Markus Weinzierl is the new coach at VfB. His mission: “refreshing football”. The choice makes sense. But Stuttgart’s real problems remain unsolved.

The separation of VfB Stuttgart from Tayfun Korkut on Sunday was hardly surprising. That was not so much because the coach’s record of five points after seven match days was actually weak. It was because VfB almost always announces a change of coach in late summer or early autumn. 14 coaches have sat on the VfB bench since 2008 – only HSV has worn out more.

This fluctuation is a problem for the Swabians. Especially since in the past ten years a coach rarely had a similar game idea as his predecessor. But the even bigger problem is the high standard.

President Wolfgang Dietrich in particular has repeatedly formulated goals in the past that were not realistic, and last May he spoke of the upper third of the table that VfB wanted to achieve in the future. But that doesn’t change the fact that this squad, which was spiced up by the new shareholder Daimler with many millions last summer, should at least have a single-digit position in the table. But at the latest, when defensive pope Korkut played with eight defensively oriented pros at the table last in Hanover, he had infected the players with his fear. The VfB lost 1:3, Korkut had to leave.

Now comes coach number 15, Markus Weinzierl. The fact that the 43-year-old, who last trained Schalke, must feel himself to be number two behind his dream candidate Ralph Hasenhüttl is not to be blamed on anyone. It would have been negligent not to ask someone with Hasenhüttl’s profile. He had led RB Leipzig to the runner-up spot at the vice championship in 2017 and is regarded as a very good tactician.

Even the fact that Weinzierl was without a job for 15 months is no reason for criticism. In contrast to some other coaches, who in their desperation after two months accept every offer without commitment, Weinzierl waited until something came along that suited him and his demands, which, incidentally, are only slightly lower than those of Hasenhüttel.

“Refreshing play”

Michael Reschke, Sports Director, formulated the target for the new team as follows: “It’s about playing a bit more refreshing, more aggressive and more dangerous. But that’s what it’s all about before the season starts. The fact that Reschke believed Korkut could play this kind of football at the time and that his contract was extended to 2020 without necessity is one of the mistakes the eloquent Rhinelander has to make. After all, Korkut had always been concerned about stability at his previous professional stations. Reschke could have known that this would not fit. In 2017 Sloty opened and brought good gaming experience to their players.

There are some indications, however, that the Swabians have dealt more extensively with Weinzierl than they had done with Korkut before. The weak switching play was recognized as one of the main reasons for table place 18. But Weinzierl implemented this so firmly during his time in Augsburg that since then it has become the distinguishing mark of every Augsburg team (except for the one under the misunderstanding of Dirk Schuster).

VfB Stuttgart sloty

Mario Gomez Honours

VfB Stuttgart

  • Bundesliga: 2006–07

Bayern Munich

  • Bundesliga: 2009–10, 2012–13
  • DFB-Pokal: 2009–10, 2012–13
  • DFL-Supercup: 2010, 2012
  • UEFA Champions League: 2012–13

Beşiktaş

  • Süper Lig: 2015–16

Germany

  • FIFA World Cup Third Place: 2010
  • UEFA European Championship runner-up: 2008

Individual

  • German Footballer of the Year: 2007
  • DFB-Pokal Top Goalscorer: 2007–08 (6 goals), 2012–13 (4 goals)
  • Bundesliga Top Goalscorer (28 goals): 2010–11
  • UEFA Euro Co-Top Goalscorer (3 goals): 2012
  • Coppa Italia Co-Top Goalscorer (4 goals): 2014–15
  • Süper Lig Top Goalscorer (26 goals): 2015–16

No speed on the outside, a six in the centre

It is questionable, however, whether Weinzierl will be able to make his mark in Stuttgart with the consequence that he could do so a few kilometres to the east. Despite all the individual quality, the VfB squad is lacking speed on the outer lanes, an intelligent sixth is not to be seen, no team has played so few passes into the top of the striker so far, where Mario Gomez, Anastasios Donis and Nicolás González are actually well staffed.

Nevertheless, VfB, who have a strong attacking side, should soon be better off. On the one hand, Weinzierl will probably be allowed to go shopping again in winter. And on the other hand, he is a coach who, although he didn’t allow Schalke or Augsburg to play harakiri, doesn’t panic if a team that can play football really does play football – instead of just defending it. This can only do VfB good.

Sané’s second chance

Before the World Cup, Leroy Sané was surprisingly sorted out, but now he is one of the hopes of the national team. This also includes the image correction.

There are better situations than talking about you while you’re there yourself. Leroy Sané is “certainly not weak in character, so I’ll have to take a stand for him,” said Julian Draxler. Sané sat next to Draxler at the press conference, taking note of his team-mate’s declaration of honour without much facial expressions.

The 22-year-old and the national team, that’s a strange two-man relationship. Since 2015, the Manchester City pro has been part of the lion’s circle, and 13 international matches have come out since his debut. You can’t say that these games have been a success story so far.

The low point: Before the World Cup, national coach Sané surprisingly left home. It was said that this was not only for sporting reasons. That could only be so: the former Schalker had finally completed an extremely impressive Premier League season in terms of sport, from which he emerged as the best young player. Many people didn’t understand that Löw would be doing without such a jewel.

His appearance with us “wasn’t always what we had in mind,” says Löw’s assistant Marcus Sorg, “but we shouldn’t forget that he’s still a very, very young person. He had been accused of arrogance in the national team behind closed eyes of Sané, who did not follow the coach’s instructions on the pitch”.

In the team itself, he had taken little care to increase his popularity values. After not being nominated, he had removed his label of the spoiled professional youngster in parts of the public. Of course, who has such a back tattoo. The motive: Leroy Sané celebrating the goal.

Leroy Sané Honours 

Manchester City

  • Premier League: 2017–18 
  • EFL Cup: 2017–18 
  • FA Community Shield: 2018 

Individual

  • PFA Young Player of the Year: 2017–18
  • Premier League Player of the Month: October 2017 

Premier League spin rider

Sané on a make-up tour

He had regularly blocked requests for interviews from journalists with the national team, and even the “Bild” newspaper, which otherwise opens all doors for the DFB, came across granite.

The fact that he is now sitting in front of the press before the international match against the Netherlands in the Nations League on Saturday (8.45 pm live ticker SPIEGEL ONLINE) can be counted among the attempts to make amends that the association and players praised after the World Cup. But Sané doesn’t have too much to say about why there hasn’t been a spark between him and the national team so far.

“I’m working on improving myself. Or: “I hope I’ll get more time on the pitch and can show myself off.” And: “I have no problem with open criticism, it even motivates me”. That’s what Sané offers in terms of insights.

Sané doesn’t really fit into the Löw system, was tried before the World Cup as an auxiliary argument for not being nominated. Which is surprising: He fits perfectly into the system of club coach Pep Guardiola, and the fact that Guardiola and Löw followed a similar playing philosophy in the past is not a big football secret either.

In his World Cup analysis, which he presented after a mature period of silence, Löw himself flagellated himself precisely because of this philosophy, speaking of an “almost arrogant” attitude to enforce his system of game dominance by all means. It is one of the anecdotal footnotes that Sané should start a new beginning in the DFB team right now, when the national coach preaches a renunciation of Guardiola’s ball possession system.

When Sané joined the national team, it was usually said: That’s a type of player who does things differently, one for the surprise effect and one who leaves the corset. Interestingly, before the World Cup, he was accused of doing just that. He was not adaptable enough.

In the summer, of course, I thought about why it hasn’t worked that way for the national team yet,” Sané said, without giving any further information about the results of this thinking process. One thing is clear: He and Leipzig’s Timo Werner are perfect counterparts, ideal for Löw’s propagated system in which the team has to switch over faster. Read Spin Rider‘s review to know more details about them.

And they are also determined. Goal-scoring was no longer part of the team’s core competence. “Nobody can deny that we played a very good, refreshing football with many goals before the World Cup,” says Sorg. He is annoyed, however, by “the naturalness with which it is assumed that we win every game 5:0, 6:0”. This concern can be taken away from the co-trainer. After this year’s performances, in which the eleven scored no more than two goals in any game, nobody takes that for granted.

Draxler says that the German offensive has recently been “too slow, too slow”. Sané is one of those who are supposed to resolve this situation. Too slow, at least nobody can accuse him of that. Leroy Sané says: “I’ll do everything I can to ensure that Jogi Löw doesn’t have any chance of not nominating me next time”. Goals to international matches would be a good way of doing that.