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„Leader role was forced on him“ – Is Matthijs de Ligt not a defensive leader?

Mathijs de Ligt
Foto: Getty Images

Bayern is struggling with defensive problems this season. The bosses have apparently diagnosed that the Munich team lacks a defensive leader – hence the interest in Ronald Araujo from FC Barcelona. Former Bayern defender Holger Badstuber is also missing a leader in the defense.

Holger Badstuber himself was a defender at FC Bayern – today the 34-year-old misses a real leader in the record champions‘ defense.

He is not convinced by Mathijs de Ligt’s leadership qualities. The Dutchman was captain at Ajax Amsterdam. But Badstuber said on Sky: „Nowadays, the armband on the arm is also often used to increase the market value and make the player stand out even more – regardless of whether he has leadership qualities or not. That was perhaps also Ajax’s idea.“

The former Germany international continued: „Last season, the leader role at Bayern was imposed on him, the result with only one title and many goals conceded speaks for itself.“

„Bayern’s desired solution not easy to find“

De Ligt’s defensive colleague Dayot Upamecano attested to Badstuber’s „great potential in footballing terms“, although he noted: „In terms of his personality, I don’t see him as a leader. You can’t fool yourself and artificially impose the role on the player. In Leipzig, Willi Orban was the captain and a club icon was his partner, and he was able to develop wonderfully alongside him, but Bayern Munich is a different ball game.“

Badstuber believes it is still too early to assess new signing Minjae Kim. The defender from South Korea is playing solidly, but still has to get used to the team, the rhythm and the demands at FC Bayern – these are much greater than at Kim’s former club SSC Napoli, he explained: „At Bayern, the double is always a must, it’s a completely different challenge mentally. You can’t underestimate that.“

The former Bayern professional would like to see a new defender in the winter who can play both in the center and on the right side of defense – like Benjamin Pavard, who left Bayern for Inter Milan: „But players with this quality are not easy to find and are in high demand.“

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