Has anyone ever noticed that one’s routine can take up too much time? It certainly does and, as if that was not already enough, it can make one feel a bit out of the loop. I have heard about the interview that Lahm and Kahn gave to SportBild a day or two ago. Cannot wait to read it! Unfortunately, I cannot get access to the original content this time around because the website does not allow buying an electronic copy for those of us outside of Germany. So, if any of you out there have the original and can scan it for me, I will be glad to translate it and post it here, having given you credit for providing the original.
However, while trying to figure out what to do in this situation, here is the interview Lahm gave last week before the friendly against Ukraine.
Lahm: “We are no longer satisfied.”
When 17 journalists get together at the round table for a usual press conference at FC Bayern, there has to be an unusual reason. In the media room on Säbener Straße, one is waiting for the DFB-captain Philipp Lahm to whom Löw has given the permission to take a break.
Philipp Lahm, are there currently more journalists or players on Säbener Straße?
Philipp Lahm: Clearly, journalists. I haven’t yet seen a player today.
The German National Team is on a mission, and the captain watches TV on the couch. A strange feeling?
Philipp Lahm: It is, of course, unusual for me. Recently, I have been to every international game. But since I have a small sinus infection and am taking antibiotics, the break is convenient.
Germany plays on your 28th birthday. What are your hopes for the future?
Philipp Lahm: Health will always be important. Other than that, a title! One plays football so he can win titles. So far, the season looks, indeed, very good. Of course, we want to win the Bundesliga and, in the best-case scenario, the German Cup, as well as go far in the Champions League. And we want to compete for the title at the European Championship. We have the quality, but a bit of luck is necessary, too.
How has the German team changed since the World Cup 2010?
Philipp Lahm: Obviously, it has matured. The team has come together even more. Especially in the midfield, we have many top players to somewhat vary our game. We have played a lot via counterattacks, with a defensive focus. Now, we have the quality in itself to shape the game, as one could see in the match against Brazil. Moreover, there is already a new generation of players between 20 and 25 years old. The fact that they are now in the National Team without us, the older ones, does them good. That way you can develop something new, since they have to take responsibility.
To what extent does the National Team profit from the Bayern block?
Philipp Lahm: Before the season, there haven’t been that many of us, and it worked. It is nice for FC Bayern, and obviously, we know one another. Every team needs a framework. It is also an advantage for the National Team to have those comprising the framework train together every day here, at FC Bayern. But the past has demonstrated that one doesn’t necessarily have to have seven or eight players from the same team.
Jogi Löw is planning an experiement with Özil and Götze in the center. The critics say that doesn’t work; the advocates find it good. What do you think?
Philipp Lahm: They are outstanding football players. Both have a very strong technique, can make a decisive pass that will lead to the winning goal. They are two very good players at the same position. Whether or not it works, one will see when the two play together.
Is the upcoming match against Borussia Dortmund one of the most important games of the season?
Philipp Lahm: In any case, we have a possibility of advancing by eight points. That would be a good point of departure for us, but, of course, it wouldn’t be then carved in stone. But it is definitely an important game because one can enlarge the point difference between Dortmund and us. I also view Dortmund as the closest rivals for the championship.
Arjen Robben is about to return to the team’s training. To what extent is Bayern better with him?
Philipp Lahm: It is hard to say to what extent one is better with a particular player. Arjen is an excellent football player and an important player for us. He can decide the outcome of a game by himself. It would be nice if everyone on the team was fit. That would be a dream.
Is Spain an opponent to beat in the Champions League, as well as at the European Championship?
Philipp Lahm: Yes, FC Barcelona is still the favorite in the Champions League, but also Real Madrid is making a very good impression. Also, with the National Team, it is necessary to beat Spain.
It has been said that the National Team had too much respect for Spain at the World Cup 2010. Why will this change?
Philipp Lahm: I, too, believe that we had too much respect. However, our game was designed in a way that would allow us to switch quickly to the defense. That didn’t work out that well against Spain. Now we have developed. The team has become stronger game-wise and can frame the game itself. That wouldn’t be possible one and a half year ago.
Germany has evolved. Has the gap between Germany and Spain narrowed because Spain has stopped?
Philipp Lahm: I believe that it [the gap] has become smaller. For Spain, it was difficult to continue developing even further.
In the German team, there is the Bayern block. In the Spanish team, the Barça block. Does that reflect the new duel in the Champions League?
Philipp Lahm: Of course, that is an aspiration of FC Bayern. Every year we want to compete in the Champions League an eventually win the title. The same aspiration we have in the National Team. We have become the vice-champions at the European Championship and have been the semi-finalists twice at the World Cup. We are no longer satisfied with the fourth, third, or second place! We want to win the title at last. Only then one can speak of a top-generation.
© translation unavis