Julian Green: It's very important for me to make it at Bayern

The United States international is desperate to break through at Allianz Arena and get playing time at the club where he’s grown up rather than going out on another loan


GOALEXCLUSIVE


Two years ago, Julian Green’s success looked like it had no bounds. After getting a UEFA Champions League cameo with Bayern Munich, the then 19-year-old went to the World Cup with the United States.

After soaking up the experience of the group stage, United States manager Jurgen Klinsmann turned to Green with the Americans down against Belgium in the first knockout round match. Green scored to pull a goal back, something he said “was or is one of the best moments of my life so far.”

That future could still come to pass. Green may still have the best years ahead of him. But there’s been a fair dose of reality injected into the dream of limitless triumphs on the football field.

In 2015, Green had a loan stint with Hamburg that did not go as he had hoped, logging only five appearances with the first team before returning to Bayern Munich II. Bayern is a difficult team to break into for any player, especially a young one yet to find a rhythm with a club’s first team.

Now, the 21-year-old has an opportunity in front of him with Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller both resting up after the Euros. Green has seen plenty of preseason action, including a start Wednesday against Milan.

For the attacker, proving to manager Carlo Ancelotti that he can stick with his squad rather than again go out on loan or transfer to another team is absolutely vital.

“It’s very important,” Green told Goal. “I’ve played here since I was 14 years old, so Bayern has always been my club. I grew up near Munich, so i was a big fan when I was a child. Bayern was always my club, so it’s very important for me to make it here.

“I know it’s hard, but I also know that it’s not impossible.”

The lack of action at club level looks to have contributed to a slide in Green’s national team prospects. Since 2014, the year in which he scored at the World Cup, Green has seen action in only one match with the senior team. That came in May against Puerto Rico that the US used to bridge the gap between the end of the European and Mexican seasons and the beginning of the Copa America Centenario.

While Green says he occasionally is in touch with Klinsmann and US assistant and U-23 coach Andi Herzog, he has a clear idea of what he needs to do to return to playing for the Stars and Stripes.

“The most important thing is to play. Right now I don’t think about that, I think about now, about Bayern,” Green said. “If I do my thing here, I’m sure I can be back soon with the national team, and that’s my goal also.”

A player getting minutes at Bayern would be tough for Klinsmann and Co. to ignore. Green had already vaulted into the mainstream American conscious when Klinsmann selected him to go to the 2014 World Cup, and first-team minutes would only raise his profile even more. While Green won’t supplant players like Lewandowski and Muller, the early indications are that Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti is happy with what he’s seen from the attacker. 

“I think he’s doing really good this season,” Ancelotti said before the Milan contest. “He played the game that we played, did well, scored a goal in the first match, worked really hard in all the games and we are going to see what happens with him. He’s with us, and he has to continue to work hard to improve and I think that he will be important for us in the season.”

For now, Green is trying to soak up the lessons the new Bayern boss is hoping to impart. Ancelotti’s list of players he’s helped spring to success is not a short one.

“I think I can learn very much. He has a lot of experience,” Green said. “He worked with top players, top teams, so I can learn every day from him. He’s a really good coach, he’s a really nice guy as a person. He’s a perfect coach to me.”

With the perfect coach at his dream club, Green will hope he can continue to make a good impression during the preseason. Bayern meets Inter on Saturday before closing out their US tour with a contest against Real Madrid.

Carlo Ancelotti: Love of football driving big transfer fees

The Bayern Munich manager views rising prices for players as a function of the market, with football commanding higher and higher prices from television rights holders.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — While transfer fees are rising, Bayern Munich manager Carlo Ancelotti views that as a product of teams having more money thanks to TV deals — and by extension of fans’ passion for the game.

Ancelotti said the phenomenon of players going for higher prices is simply keeping pace with the market, which is being fed by an audience ravenous for more and more top-level football.

“I think that not only football, the market is the market,” Ancelotti said. “Of course maybe the market has increased, but the market is someone has to sell, another one has to buy.

“This is how the market functions. Is it bigger than the past? Of course it’s bigger than the past, but also the investment the television right agreements around the world made in football are bigger. Football is really important, a really interesting industry and the market is like this. I don’t see anything special. I think that people love football and we always will love football.”

Earlier this week, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp complained about increasing transfer fees, saying, “If you bring one player in for £100 million and he gets injured, then it all goes through the chimney. The day that this is football I’m not in a job anymore, because the game is about playing together.”

While Ancelotti views it as a function of an increasing market, he also made sure to make the most of his team’s foray into that market, signing Renato Sanches and Mats Hummels before the summer international tournaments begin.

The Italian manager now says his Bayern squad is set. Ancelotti is hoping that his team can not only extend its run of four consecutive Bundesliga titles and add the Champions League, but he also said that the perception that the season is only a success if Bayern achieves European supremacy is a fallacy.

“I think every team wants to win the Champions League — Bayern, Real Madrid, Barcelona, everybody wants to win it. Only one team wins it,” the manager said. “I think the collective will be competitive until the end in all competitions. There’s not only one focus. We want to win the Champions League, but if we don’t we’ll be competitive until the end.”

Bayern continues its preseason Saturday with the second match of its United States tour, a contest against Inter. The tour closes with a match against Real Madrid on Wednesday.

Inter vs Bayern Munich preview: Nerazzurri fend off Icardi speculation ahead of ICC clash

The Italian and German giants lock horns at Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium on Saturday, but a prospective move to Napoli is dominating the agenda around the club captain

Inter face a tough test in the shape of Bayern Munich in their latest International Champions Cup clash, but the biggest concerns at the Italian giants revolve around the future of Mauro Icardi. 

The ex-Barcelona and Sampdoria striker has been heavily tipped to succeed Gonzalo Higuain at Inter’s Serie A rivals Napoli. 

The club have more than €90 million in new funds following that sale, but the Nerazzurri will not let their captain go without a fight. 

“All of us are hoping that number goes over €60m,” president Erick Thohir warned in New York when asked about a reported new bid from Napoli.

“But for us, that isn’t important at the moment.

“Inter will be here for hundreds of years yet. Inter is made of individuals who can change. This happens every year.

“Icardi is a very important player for the team, he’s our captain. We’re building a team and we have to look at the dynamic.”

The Argentine missed both of Inter’s games in the past week, as a 3-1 defeat to Paris Saint-Germain was followed a draw against Estudiantes in New York. 

Coach Roberto Mancini, however, has insisted that injury kept Icardi out of action. 

“I didn’t field him because he reported feeling some pain in his shoulder this morning. There would have been no point in risking him,” he said, while refusing to confirm whether Icardi would participate in Saturday’s Bayern clash. 

The Bundesliga champions, meanwhile, are looking to end the International Champions Cup on a high after enduring a defeat on penalties at the hands of AC Milan. 

“We have to continue our work. We have time to prepare the team before we start the official competition,” coach Carlo Ancelotti said at a news conference after the game. 

“We can use this game to improve our conditioning, to improve our organization. We’re at the beginning, so we made some mistakes but of course we have to wait for all the players when they come back and after that we can prepare our season.”

Players like Robert Lewandowski, Manuel Neuer, Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Renato Sanches are resting after playing in Euro 2016, and while midfielder Arturo Vidal is in the United States, he did not feature against Milan.

Partly because of the absences, the new Bayern boss is more concerned with how his players are progressing physically than if the team lifts pre-season trophies.

“At this moment, I think the most important thing is the physical condition,” he said. “We don’t have all the players, but we try to do our style, our play, so the goal is to improve our physical condition.

“In this sense, we are doing well. We didn’t have injuries tonight and we can continue to work, to prepare the next two games here and this is good.”

Guardiola: I still love Ribery despite jibes

The French winger said the new Manchester City boss lacks experience and feels more trusted by Carlo Ancelotti, and the Catalan coach believes he has a point

Pep Guardiola says he still loves Franck Ribery despite criticism from the Bayern Munich winger over his coaching methods.

Guardiola departed Bayern at the end of last season to take over at Manchester City having led the Bavarians to three consecutive Bundesliga titles.

However, his exit was not met with despair in all quarters, with Ribery claiming the former Barcelona boss lacked experience.

“Pep hasn’t had a long career as manager. He is a young coach,” Ribery told Bild this week. 


GOALREAD MORE ‘Guardiola wanted Tuchel as Bayern successor’


“He lacks experience. Sometimes he talks too much. Football is very simple.”

Ribery has also said he feels more trusted by new Bayern head coach Carlo Ancelotti, but Guardiola took the comments on the chin and insists he holds no ill will towards the former France international.

“About Ribery I must say I love him very much,” he told a news conference.

“It’s good that Ribery says I’m young. I’m here to learn.”

Guardiola wanted Tuchel to be his successor – Bayern chief

The Bavarians’ technical director Michael Reschke claims the Spaniard urged the club to appoint the Borussia Dortmund boss as his replacement at the Allianz Arena

Pep Guardiola wanted current Borussia Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel to be his replacement at Bayern Munich, according to the German champions’ technical director Michael Reschke.

The Spaniard recommended Tuchel for the role back in 2014 when Reschke joined Bayern, prompting him to set up a meeting between the two managers.

Reschke told 11 Freunde that Guardiola had said to him: “Thomas has to become my successor at Bayern.”

At the time Tuchel, who replaced Jurgen Klopp at Dortmund in 2015, was on an enforced break after leaving Mainz before the end of his contract.


GOALREAD MORE  | Pep and Tuchel star on touchline


“I had a trusting relationship with Thomas Tuchel, and knew that he admired Pep’s work,” Reschke said.

“Pep, on the other hand, was impressed with Mainz’s displays. He often talked to me about Thomas.”

Guardiola and Tuchel went head-to-head on Thursday in the International Champions Cup as Manchester City defeated Dortmund 6-5 on penalties.