How Gündogan becomes Löw’s title factor
Basel – Ilkay Gündogan shows national coach Joachim Löw at the Manchester City Gala against FC Basel that he can become the decisive factor in the DFB team in this form.
Only after the game Ilkay Gündogan could be stopped.
Because the German national player was still trapped in the doping test, the Manchester City team bus had to travel back to the hotel without his best player, and Gündogan’s good mood was not affected by this delay. After all, the midfielder had previously been the supreme man in the time-honored Jakobspark.
Joachim Löw, the 27-year-old, four months before the World Cup kick-off, showed himself to be in the form of a 4-0 triumph over FC Basel in Gala form, scoring not only two goals (14th, 54th) in the first leg of the Champions League’s first round round, but was also the linchpin of the match with 93 per cent duel and 82 per cent pass rate.
“I noticed that Jogi Löw was in the stadium, too. He saw two goals from me and Leroy Sane was replaced after his injury break,”said the Man of the Match to SPORT1 at a late hour and added with a smile:”I assume he didn’t regret his trip. Now we can fly back to Manchester with a positive experience.”
Indeed, Gündogan’s performance must have impressed the national coach as much as the rest of the 36,000 spectators. Thanks to its offensive and defensive presence, ball safety and goal-scoring potential, the former Dortmund is set to play a decisive role in defending the World Cup title.
“He was fantastic today,” enthused city coach Pep Guardiola about Gündogan, who had been injured for a long time last year. We missed him very much last season – not only because of his goals but also because of his personality. He doesn’t feel any pressure at all.”
Thanks to Gündogan, ManCity has a realistic chance of winning all four titles:”We only have February. However, we are in a great starting position in the Premier League, where we have a lead of 16 points,”said the former FC Bayern coach:”We’re almost in the Champions League quarter-finals and we’re in the league cup final, and next Monday we’ll also have the FA Cup, where we want to enter the quarter-finals”.
Gündogan also sees Citizens equipped for the final spurt:”We can achieve a great deal. It’s important that we stick to it now. If we play like we did today and in the last few weeks, we’ll be very successful this season.”
At the same time, the native of Gelsenkirchen warned against premature euphoria:”Nevertheless, we have not yet gained anything,”he said to SPORT1:”We must not now take off with all these compliments, but we definitely will not. We know that the decisive phase is only now coming.”
However, the otherwise often so critical English press is already running out of superlatives, as the Telegraph wrote. Ilkay Gündogan arrives twice while Pep Guardiola’s team riots in Switzerland,”Sun wrote:” Gündogan initiated a Swiss walk for Manchester City, giving a new impetus to the dream of the Quadruple.
For the German-Turkish player, who first scored head-on and then with a superb long-range shot, it was the second double in the Champions League after a 3-1 draw with FC Barcelona in November 2016.
A short time later, Gündogan had already missed the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 European Championships due to a rupture of the cruciate ligament, but he was very angry about the ex-Stuttgart driver Sere Die’s over-motivated entry into the race, which happened shortly before the end, but fortunately without any consequences for him – apart from the yellow card because of the following pack formation.
It would be a tragedy if Gündogan were to miss a big tournament again because of an injury – for him personally, but also for the German national team – and Jogi Löw left the stadium with relief after the whistle. In this form, the midfield engine is indispensable for the World Cup.