Bayern Munich: Philipp Lahm The Unsung Hero
When talking about Bayern Munich, soccer fans first mention Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery or Thomas Muller, often forgetting Philipp Lahm. There is nothing surprising in that, as attacking players always get more credit than defensive players in soccer. Philipp Lahm is one of the players that don’t get as much credit as they deserve. The Bayern Munich and German national team captain rarely gets any of the headlines but he surely deserves it.
Pep Guardiola, who coached players like Messi, Xavi,Busquets and Iniesta at Barcelona, recently said that Lahm was the most intelligent player he had ever coached. That compliment gives you an idea of how intelligent of a player Philipp Lahm is. He is far from being the fastest or strongest player (he is under six foot). Lahm is a very technical player, has great tactical awareness, a great ability to repeat runs, reads the game very well, is a great crosser of the ball. He thinks, sees,passes quicker than other players. Throughout his career, he has been extremely consistent playing at both right back and left back. He is both one of the best right backs and left backs in the world.
The Bayern Munich and German National team captain is the kind of player that would give you an eight out of 10 performance week in, week out. He has been recently moved by Guardiola from his usual right back position to an unusual defensive midfield role. A ”normal player” would have needed a few games to understand the position and it would have been understandable to see Lahm’s performances drop as a result of his change of position but the German international adapted very well and produced a stellar performance on Wednesday against Manchester City in the Champion’s League. He also is a great leader and has been captaining both Germany and Bayern Munich since 2010.
Philipp Lahm is undoubtedly the world’s best right back at the moment. His performances with Bayern and Germany have been outstanding for years. Joachim Low, the German national team coach said, ”for almost 10 years, Lahm has provided consistency, reliability and the highest standard in the national side”. Not many players remain on the national team for ten years. It shows what a consistent and brilliant player Phillip Lahm really is.
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