Germany coach Joachim Löw has thrown his weight behind the country’s number one goalie, Manuel Nuer.
To the German tactician, the Bayern Munich captain is the world’s best player of the year 2020. His submission is following the debate on who should be picked for the top price between the German and his Bayern’s teammate, Robert Lewandowski, had the 2020 Ballon d’Or gone ahead.
Since the 2020 Ballon d’Or has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there might not be a winner for this year’s event.
Neuer and Lewandowski guided the Bavarians to a historic treble season that saw them score 159 goals and conceded 50. The Bavarians won the Bundesliga, DFB Cup and UEFA Champions League.
Lewandowski also had a good season where he scored 55 of Bayern’s total strikes in 2019/20. The 32-year-old was the clear favourite to lift the Ballon d’Or, before organisers France Football confirmed that the trophy would not be awarded this time around.
Löw picks ‘worthier’ Manuel Nuer
In a show of support for his goalkeeper, Löw, picked the goaltender, saying he is a worthier candidate.
“Manu’s a class apart, really unbelievable. He was a big reason why Bayern won the Champions League. Even in the semi-finals, he made two or three big saves. Bayern could have been 1-0 down or pegged back to 1-1 without him against Lyon and PSG.
“For me, he would be the world player of the year.”
The goalie, who has won two Champions League in his career and a world cup played 33 games for Bayern out of the 34 Bundesliga games in 2019/20, conceding 31 goals and recorded 15 clean sheets in the process.
Apart from his abilities to keep his team in the game through some incredible saves, Nuer recorded an assist in Bayern’s DFB Cup final win over Bayer Leverkusen. The 34-year-old his third in the team best pass completion percentage across their triumphant Champions League campaign.
He now has eight Bundesliga, six DFB cups and two Champions League in his laurels.
In making a strong case for the man who refined the role of sweeper-keeper during Germany’s 2014 FIFA World Cup-winning campaign, the coach said Nuer is superb individual.
“Manu was in superb form throughout the season.The way he conducts himself, the calmness, his presence – you just have the feeling he’s always there,” Löw continued. “
Meanwhile, Nuer and some of his Bayern’s teammates have been given rest by the manager ahead of Germany’s UEFA Nations League fixtures with Spain and Switzerland.
But he will be between the sticks for Bayern at the beginning of their 2020/21 season with a DFB Cup first-round meeting away to minnows FC Düren on 15 September.
Nuer can still be voted FIFA’s Best Goalkeeper
Meanwhile, the German shot-stopper can still emerge as the best goalkeeper despite the fact that the Ballon d’Or won’t be awarded in 2020.
Nuer, who has won the Germany Player of the Year award twice was voted third in the 2014 Ballon d’Or race. He also finished as FIFA’s second best behind Gianluigi Buffon in 2017.
He will therefore be considered the front-runner to claim a record-tying fifth IFFHS World’s Best Goalkeeper award. He had picked up four in a row between 2013 and 2016.