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KFC Uerdingen: With Russian coal to the top

Investor Michail Ponomarew brought the success back. Coach Krämer relies on team spirit

Imagine FC Bayern’s pros helping new players to move on their day off and watching a football match on TV afterwards. Unbelievable! Because professional clubs take care of finding accommodation and dealing with the authorities for the stars. With KFC Uerdingen, the third league promoted, things are different.

For almost three years now, the professionals have been helping out with the moves of new colleagues. Coach Stefan Krämer (51) is enthusiastic: “I think it’s really awesome! Such actions weld together – and only a team with good team spirit exists in this league.”

A look at the table shows just how good the cohesion of the 1985 Cup winner is: KFC is the front-runner against Halle after a 2-1 win on Saturday.

Another factor for the super series of 16 points from seven league games, according to Krämer, is the experience of his team. The KFC professionals have played 406 Bundesliga matches – no team in the 3rd league has more. Krämer: “Thanks to our seasoned players, we always stay calm in critical phases and keep our nerves. That’s our big plus.” The squad includes Kevin Großkreutz (30), Maximilian Beister (28), Samed Yesil (24), Chistopher Schorch (29), Christian Dorda (29), Dennis Daube (29), Robert Müller (31), Patrick Pflücke (21), Oguzhan Kefkir (27) and Stefan Aigner (31), ten former Bundesliga players.

But the stars are not the spokesmen. Captain Mario Erb (28) and Tanju Öztürk (29) lead the team – and make sure that it remains focused despite the success. “In the 3rd league, small things decide. At the moment we are doing a lot well, but we have to confirm that again and again,” says Großkreutz. A punishment catalogue, which the professionals have worked out in addition to that of the trainer team, also helps here. In addition to points such as late arrival, leg shots are also punished during training. Anyone who is tunnelled five against two has to pay ten euros into the team’s coffers.

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The father of the success is investor and President Michail Ponomarew. The Russian multi-millionaire, who earns his money with a consulting firm for energy, has been at the top of the club since 2016. But he is not a classic financier. The Russian is closely involved in the team’s planning, watching every home match from the stands. Once a week he talks to the coaching team about the KFC team, which has the highest league budget of eight million euros. Ponomarew, who is also a member of the Krefeld Penguine first division ice hockey team, has a say in transfers.

Krämer: “He knows every player in German professional football, you can discuss every candidate with him. We make mutual suggestions for commitments – but the final word lies with Nikolas Weinhart (KFC managing director; editor) and myself”.

The triad works. The KFC would march through a league for the third time in a row with a promotion to the 2nd league.

But the sporting success also has its downside. Since the KFC cannot guarantee a separation between home and away fans in the stadium at Grotenburg, the club has to play its games in the Schauinsland-Reisen Arena, the home of the MSV Duisburg, 20 kilometres to the east. A thorn in the side of the fans. Only about 4500 fans come to the home games in the 31 500 capacity stadium. Slotsmagic has been growing and making its name.

It is unclear when the KFC will be able to return to its stadium. A demolition is also under discussion. Krämer: “Of course we want to return as soon as possible. Nobody would have thought that our sporting success would take on such proportions and that we would even grow too fast for our infrastructure”.

For the good achievements the crew is recompenced. Krämer has allowed a team excursion to the Munich Oktoberfest, which the players have to pay out of their own pocket – here, too, KFC differs from other professional clubs.

Klostermann to Bavaria? Top clubs hot on Ajax talent

According to a report by Sport Mediaset, Lukas Klostermann of RB Leipzig is the focus of FC Bayern Munich. The 22-year-old defender will be traded as backup and successor of the injured Rafinha (35). With David Alaba (26) and Joshua Kimmich (23), the Bavarians currently have only two healthy outer defenders in their squad.

According to the report, the Bavarians could still place a bid in the winter. Klostermann still has a contract in Leipzig until 2021, nothing is known about an exit clause. Where the Italians get their information about a change within the German Bundesliga from is not known.

According to SPORT BILD information, a change from Klostermann to FC Bayern is currently regarded as rather unrealistic. In the long run, however, Klostermann could well become an option for the record champion. In the long run, Klostermann, who has already played 13 times in the U21, could become interesting for the record champion. His advantages are young: He is young, talented and can defend left and right. Klostermann was also able to convince centrally in the four-man chain.

David Alaba Honours

Club
Bayern Munich

  • Bundesliga: 2009–10, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16, 2016–17, 2017–18
  • DFB-Pokal: 2012–13, 2013–14, 2015–16
  • DFL-Supercup: 2016, 2018
  • UEFA Champions League: 2012–13
  • UEFA Super Cup: 2013
  • FIFA Club World Cup: 2013

Individual

  • Austrian Footballer of the Year: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
  • Austrian Sports Personality of the Year: 2013, 2014
  • UEFA Team of the Year: 2013, 2014, 2015
  • UEFA Champions League Team of the Group Stage: 2015–16
  • ESM Team of the Year: 2013–14
  • France Football World XI: 2015
  • Bundesliga Team of the Season: 2014–15, 2015–16
  • FIFA FIFPro World XI 2nd team: 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
  • FIFA FIFPro World XI 4th team: 2017

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In Leipzig Klostermann is a permanent member of staff, and he is one of the most hopeful foreign defenders in German football. In 2016 he won silver in Rio with the German Olympic team.

Frenkie de Jong is another great talent of European football, meanwhile. The 21-year-old midfielder is currently still under contract with Ajax Amsterdam. But a number of top clubs have already turned a blind eye to de Jong.

FC Barcelona and Tottenham Hotspur have recently been considered the most promising candidates in the fight for de Jong. But now the tide could turn. With Real Madrid and Manchester United, two more heavyweights have been added, according to De Telegraaf.

The circulating sums for the youngster, who made his debut for the national team this month, are thus skyrocketing. According to the Dutch newspaper Real should be prepared to pay up to 80 million euros for the midfielder. De Jong could become Luka Modric’s long-term successor in the central midfield in Madrid.

De Jong has a contract in Amsterdam until 2022. According to “transfermarkt.de”, its market value is currently seven million euros. How concrete the offers of the top clubs are is not known. De Jong’s advisor Ali Dursun meanwhile said: “I can neither confirm nor deny the interest of Real and Manchester”. He refers to Marc Overmars, the sports director of Ajax: “I forward all clubs that report to him”. In 21Nova, you can enjoy their fantastic casino bonuses and promotions.

Ferryman fails! Next bankruptcy for Schalke

Again no victory, the negative record is set: The crisis-ridden runner-up Schalke 04 missed his first points win on the fifth matchday of the Bundesliga. The team of Domenico Tedesco, who is under increasing pressure, lost 0:1 (0:0) at SC Freiburg on Tuesday. So far, the royal blues have only started this badly once – two years ago.

Florian Niederlechner (52nd) scored for Freiburg and turned the game upside down. Hamza Mendyl (41st) and former Freiburg player Daniel Caligiuri (45+2) had previously hit the post for the Schalkers, who are now even more under pressure in their next game on Saturday (15.30/Sky) against FSV Mainz 05.

Tedesco had tried everything before the kick-off whistle and turned his starting eleven upside down to six positions in comparison to the recent bankruptcy against Bayern Munich (0:2), including defensive boss Naldo and Sebastian Rudy, a newcomer for millions, only sitting on the bench. In addition, the coach completely eliminated the Argentinian attacker Franco Di Santo from the squad as a result of the verbal dispute.

However, the personnel changes, coupled with a tactically more offensive orientation, did not yield a profit at first. Although Cedric Teuchert scored a goal (6th) with the first chance of the match, he was disqualified due to an offside position according to the video images. Tedesco, of course, didn’t mind, he applauded the action loudly and asked his players to keep up the pressure.

The guests were only able to do this to a limited extent. The attacks looked promising, but in the last third of the pitch the balls were played too inaccurately at the top or too often crosswise. This gave the Freiburgers the opportunity to counterattack, which often resulted in a final thanks to the speedy switchover.

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Matija Nastasic Honours

Manchester City

  • Premier League: 2013–14

Individual

  • Manchester City Young Player of the Year: 2012–13

Obviously because of this danger, the Schalkers controlled their attacks after a good half hour and were again more focused on defensive stability. As a result, the quality and speed of the game declined and only the two post shots shortly before half time caused a stir again.

The Freiburgers came better out of the cabin and were promptly rewarded with the Niederlechner dusters. This had been preceded by a goalkeeper error by Ralf Fährmann, who unfortunately fended off Christian Günter’s long-range shot in Niederlechner’s feet. Check the Rizk Casino for more details.

Tedesco was puzzled by the unfortunate backlog, the 33-year-old tigered nervously around his coaching zone, apparently in search of the redeeming move. His charges could have used it well, as they were still acting without any plan after Matija Nastasic’s 63rd free-kick.