Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Bundesliga - Kahn backs Reus move


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Legendary former Bayern Munich goalkeeper Oliver Kahn has backed Marco Reus to succeed at Borussia Dortmund, saying he made a good choice after rejecting the chance to join Bayern in the summer.
Borussia Moenchengladbach forward Reus has agreed a pre-contract to join last season’s surprise champions in June, choosing Dortmund over the country’s biggest club, much to Bayern’s chagrin.
Before the transfer, Bayern had boasted of their ability to beat other German clubs to transfers, with director of sport Christian Nerlinger going as far as to claim that they could secure signatures at lower fees than their rivals – such is the draw of the record title holders.
But the 22-year-old Reus – who was born in Dortmund and whose partner still lives there – bucked that trend by moving back to his boyhood club, leading Bayern to hint at underhand tactics from BvB.
"Reus’s decision to choose Dortmund over Bayern does not surprise me," Kahn said in his exclusive Eurosport-Yahoo! blog in Germany.
"The 22-year-old fits perfectly into the Dortmund philosophy, which gives young players the opportunity to play regularly.
"In addition, he was born in Dortmund and has strong links to the club. It would have been idle speculation to say that Reus could cement a regular place at Bayern, but he is likely to do so at Dortmund."
In addition to the ire of the notoriously proud Bayern fans, Reus faces a backlash from Gladbach supporters – after all, his 11 goals so far this season have fired them to just one point behind joint leaders Bayern, Dortmund and Schalke.
Indeed, he scored the opener in a brilliant 3-1 win over Bayern on Friday night, a result that has thrown the Bundesliga title race wide open.
"A 17 million euro price tag can put a lot of pressure on a young player," Kahn added. "And you can add the reaction of the Gladbach fans to that burden.
"I remember when I left Karlsruhe for Bayern – despite 20 years in the KSC shirt I was insulted and even spat at by the fans.
"Fans respond to transfers emotionally, irrationally. A professional decision for a player can burst the hopes and dreams of supporters, something you have to accept. But Reus has shown his mental strength, that he accepts the challenge.
"His performance against Bayern showed a playfulness, a lightness of foot that hints at a very strong character, one suited to the big time.
"Of course he got an early goal and soon afterwards the Gladbach fans were won back – it helps that his goal (from 30 yards after a misplaced pass by Manuel Neuer) was so skilful."
Eurosport

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