In case you’ve been living under a rock, here are the depressing facts: After suffering a national embarrassment by crashing out in the 2018 World Cup in the group stages, Germany did it again in the 2022 World Cup. Two times Hansi Flick’s men fell at the first hurdle of the World Cup. Words cannot begin to describe the humiliation the nation felt at such sporting failure.
However, after crashing out of the 2022 World Cup, amid all the disappointment, frustration and despair, there was one prevailing thought among all German fans: There needs to be a reset. Things cannot keep going on like this. Things need to be adjusted. Germany’s next generation will need to provide the impetus to get Germany performing well on the international stage again.
But where will this next generation of talent come from? While the likes of Florian Wirtz and Jamal Musiala are set to become lynchpins for Germany for over a decade, the potential supporting cast is thinning out. Because these young players are choosing to not represent Germany.
Take FC Nürnberg’s Can Uzun, for instance. As Sport1 reports, he is seen as one of Germany’s best young strikers, a position in which Germany has lacked serious quality for a long time now, having bagged 20 goals and four assists in 17 U-17 games. However, Germany has had no contact with him. None whatsoever. Uzun is currently representing Turkey’s U-19 and already has a professional contract with Nürnberg, but Germany is not giving him any attention.
But Germany’s inattentiveness with Uzun is not an isolated incident. Talents such as Raúl König and Eyüp Aydin have gone from representing Germany’s youth teams to Spain/Turkey respectively after being overlooked multiple times. Lazar Samardzić and Igor Matanović are reportedly choosing to represent Serbia and Croatia, respectively. Malik Tillman has already declared for the United States. Meanwhile, Sport1’s article also indicates that Kenan Yildiz and Paul Wanner are set to choose other nations over Germany, as well. Read more about Wanner’s situation here.
How bad will the losses of these individual players be? We won’t be able to tell for a while. But consistently losing players to other countries hardly seems like a smart plan to get Germany back to the top of the footballing world. Germany might need to change communication with its’ brightest talents. And soon.