Schalke’s Lewis Holtby, who is currently spending a year out on loan at Mainz (who are currently top of the Bundesliga table thanks in no small part to Holtby himself), has spoken of further accomplishment and glory, and has set himself on becoming the next Bastian Schweinsteiger.
Holtby, who currently captains the Germany U-21 side, and who I think was very unlucky not to be called up to Joachim Loew’s senior squad for European Championship qualifiers against Turkey and Kazakhstan, has been on scintillating form for Mainz this season. His work down the right wing, where he absolutely terrorizes opposition full-backs on a weekly basis, has made him a joy to watch this season. At Schalke, he would have been under pressure to perform due to their current situation. At Mainz, though, he is riding a wave of unexpected success, which has undoubtedly freed up his play. Thomas Tuchel, the manager of Mainz, has passed on to his players a real passion and joy for the game, and it’s been displayed by his side against all odds. Mainz defeated Wolfsburg at the Volkswagen Arena despite being three goals down at one stage; they defeated last year’s Champions League finalists and current Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich; and they have matched the best Bundesliga start in history with seven straight wins.
Under Tuchel’s guidance, Holtby has quickly become one of the most promising young talents in all of Europe. Holtby spoke to Bild and said:
“In my young career, I’ve experienced a lot already: a relegation battle, the tough training of Felix Magath, the fresh perspectives of Tuchel. I hope that, at age 25, I will be as mature as Bastian Schweinsteiger is today. I will then have the experience and poise on the pitch and ball that he has.”
A player as young as Holtby is who has already experienced so much and who shows such astounding talent on a regular basis is surely destined for great things in the future. The Bundesliga continues to churn out fantastic young players who will no doubt set the world’s game alight in years to come. Brazil 2014 may be Holtby’s tournament, like 2010’s was to Thomas Mueller.
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