In an interview set to appear in the Thursday print edition of German footballing magazine Kicker, Thomas Müller discussed the forthcoming UEFA Nations League fixtures and all of the departure talk surrounding teammate Robert Lewandowski.
Müller's Bayern and German national team colleague Leon Goretzka weighed in on the Lewandowski matter yesterday from Hansi Flick's training camp.
|Thomas Müller.||Photo: Werner100359, CC BY-SA 4.0|
A slate of UEFA Nations League fixtures may not fully satiate footballing fanatics feeling (correctly) as if a summer of World Cup football feels overdue. There can nevertheless be no doubt that Thomas Müller, as always finds himself highly motivated for the coming June matches.
"Personally, I'm fired up for the games," Müller told German footballing magazine Kicker in an interview scheduled to be published in the Thursday print edition "Part of it has to do with the fact that the season is already two weeks behind us and no international from the current squad was involved in the Champions League final this year."
"There's also the fact the past two tournaments with the national team have not been satisfactory either," Müller was quick to add, "The 1-1 against the Netherlands in March was an adequate test. We passed it, but we also want to win against opponents on eye level. June offers us the opportunity to do that.
Despite some noticeable form dips this season, Nationalmannschaft trainer Hansi Flick still selected Müller for the June fixtures. It's not difficult to see why. The 32-year-old's enthusiasm and leadership remain needed irrespective of whether he finds himself in top form. In an interview last week, Müller spoke on the need to reaffirm confidence after "showing vulnerability in tournaments."
"It's important to develop a feeling as a group that you can get through moments together," Müller said from the German national team training camp in Marbella, "We're convinced of our quality, but we need to carry winners confidence into the World Cup."
When it came time to answer questions about the increasingly likely departure of long-time teammate and friend Robert Lewandowski, Müller expressed the desire that his "long-time offensive partner" would remain with the club. Probed about whether or not this was even possible following recent escalations in public statements, Müller said he was confident there could still be a reversal.
"Things like this happen when there's a break between games," Müller noted, "I remember Franck Ribery's desire to switch to Real Madrid. One thing is certain: every player who is still under contract in Munich on September 1st will also want to play well. Because playing badly is no fun for any player."
Müller's Bayern and national team colleague Leon Goretzka also spoke out on the Lewandowski situation from the German training camp earlier in the week. The Nationalelf's starting midfielder wasn't necessarily reluctant to weigh in on how the very public nature of the dispute had been handled.
""It doesn't help if I put my two cents in," the midfielder said on Tuesday, "I do think that both Bayern and Lewy have written an amazing success story together. Out of respect for that story, I'd be happy if both sides took some of the vitriol out of it."