As a junior coach for Canada, former Bundesliga star Paul Stalteri has supported Bayern Munich’s Alphonso Davies and Lille’s top scorer Jonathan David. In an interview with SPORT BILD, the former Bremen defender said why Davies is irreplaceable in Munich and why David will also be successful in Germany. Staltieri also talks about his expectations from Herzensklopp Werder.
How much do Bayern miss Canadian star Alphonso Davies, who is training to recover from myocarditis, in the hot phase of the season?
Paul Stalltieri (44): Davies’ failure is too bad for Bayern now. His health is on top and the Munich team will not take any risks and will use him again very soon. For me and all the football fans in Canada, the news of his heart problems came as a huge shock. Above all, the uncertainty about its source, how it will affect it, and how long it will last is what has left us so unsure. I’m really looking forward to when he can play again. Indispensable in Bayern Munich and the Canadian national team.
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You coached Davis as a youth international. How do you see its development in Munich?
amazing! Bayern is a godsend for Davies – and vice versa. He has developed well in Munich, for example improving his game on the wing. It’s amazing the power that Alfonso has brought to the team by playing on the left in recent years. With his dynamism, running ability, sense of the ball, positive and cheerful demeanor, he made Bayern even better. He has matured into one of the best defenders in the world.
One of the most sought after strikers is Davies’ national teammate Jonathan David of OSC Lille. Several top European clubs, including BVB, are said to have the 22-year-old on their list. Would Germany be a good place for him?
Jonathan fits in well with Germany.
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We Canadians have the same mindset, a similar dynamism to American footballers – some of whom have recently started in the Bundesliga, like Giovanni Reina at Dortmund. Jonathan is a complete striker: fast, two-legged, dangerous with a header, very clever to tackle and gain space, shoots from all positions with good technique, and also works a lot at the back. He’s a smart boy who knows exactly what’s best for him. So far he has been right in his changes. If he goes to a big club in Germany like BVB, he will be successful there.
David’s archery is one of the reasons Canada is almost certain to have a World Cup ticket in its pocket. Can the national team upset the major countries in the World Cup finals 36 years ago?
In the World Cup, the Canadians will be a very annoying opponent for all teams and can cause a surprise. We’re probably a little better than the US and Mexico right now, and that was different in the last 30 years. The development of the team was not a surprise to me.
In which way?
I saw the incredible potential of Alfonso Davies and Jonathan David when they came back to the U15s and I knew they could have a great career and become Canada’s top superstar. We have a good mix of veterans like 39-year-old midfielder Atiba Hutchinson and promising young footballers.
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The current position of your heart club Werder, with which you won the championship and cup in 2004, is also very promising. Bremen is currently third in the second division, tied on points with Darmstadt and St. Pauli in the direct promotion places. How excited are you from the outside?
I watch as many of their matches as possible. At the beginning of the season things looked bad, I was afraid for Werder. I am very happy with this upward movement.
What do you like exactly?
You can feel how young coach Uli Werner has really brought momentum to the team and the whole club. He managed to make the players their best. Werder is on his way to becoming what the club stands for a few years ago: attractive, attacking and successful football. It is now important for the Bremen team to mobilize direct Weideraufsteig. Otherwise, it will be very difficult to get a backup.
How sure are you that Werder will play again in the Bundesliga next season?
I strongly believe in him. But it will be a very narrow box. Every weekend the cards are reshuffled in the promotional race. I think Bremen will have to shiver to the end, and it will be a neck race until the end of the season.
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