Doer instead of chatting: Did Flick do this DFB star a favour?

Pride is written on his face. A beaming Niklas Süle leads BVB onto the pitch as captain for the first test kick on Wednesday. Muscle packed and lively. His physical form clearly shows that the defensive edge has not been idle during the summer holidays.

The fact that Niklas Süle apparently spent most of his free time working on his own body could also be because he unintentionally had a little too much free time a few weeks ago.

For the June international matches, Dortmund national coach Hansi Flick had not been named, surprising to some. The disregard was followed by public criticism: « Niki could be one of the best centre-backs around. His potential is huge, but I think he leaves a lot behind. » national coach explained his decision to the « FAZ ».

It seemed to be the starting shot for the annual defender fitness debate. From a media perspective, just in time for the summer crisis. Meanwhile, Süle’s reaction was disciplined in two ways.

Such a public rebuke would not have been acknowledged by many national players without a word. Perhaps the 1.95m giant deliberately held back with a public statement this time. After all, in the past he had often taken a stand and thus added fuel to the fire.

« People who bring something like this to the world always only see Niklas Süle, who honestly admits that he likes to eat a hamburger or drink a beer. Yes and? You think other pros don’t do that? They don’t just don’t talk about it, » he said about a year ago when he was introduced as a new BVB signing.

Süle certainly didn’t leave the subject cold this year either, and yet he apparently decided to turn his anger into motivation. The defender took advantage of the extra holidays to get back into shape.

At the start of training in Dortmund, he presented himself with excellent fitness values, which not only impressed the coaching staff. « Niki has done a lot more on vacation than everyone else, » sporting director Sebastian Kehl confirmed at a press conference.

Artikelbild: Maker instead of chatter: Did flick do this DFB star a favor?

Süle’s extra shifts during the summer holidays were also viewed extremely positively within the team. « What have you done? » According to ‘SportBild’, other players would have asked with appreciation.

The reaction of the national team was not long in coming. DFB sporting director Rudi Völler told ‘Bild’: « It’s great that Niklas worked on his fitness during his vacation. His management informed me early on that he would do even more on vacation. .

Said. Did. Süle opted for acting instead of small talk, although he didn’t even have to speak in self-defense. He could have let his statistics speak for themselves from last season.

Because during his first season at BVB, Süle reached a top speed of 34.59 km/h. Best personal career. That’s enough for seventh place among Bundesliga centre-backs. Mind you, as the fastest German.

Additionally, Süle had the fourth-best pass rate in the league at 92.56%. Despite his body mass, he is also one of the fairest and most efficient players in the Bundesliga and comes out of it almost without faults. Süle has never been blocked in yellow for ten years. You can count on him.

What Flick formulated in his reprimand in the subjunctive mood already seems to be part of reality. In some areas, Niklas Süle is one of the best centre-backs around.

Artikelbild: Maker instead of chatter: Did flick do this DFB star a favor?

And yet, in a way, the lesson of the national coach seems to have been a kind of favor. Because while Süle diligently rolled out the cardio units on vacation and completed a special program with strength and stabilization drills, Flick’s Süle-less defense crumbled game after game into celebrated instability against Ukraine, the Poland and Colombia.

None of the DFB defenders could pick up any positives and Süle can therefore count himself among the big winners, even though he wasn’t even there. Or just because of that. He was conspicuous by his absence.

Süle is expected to be considered for the DFB squad again for the upcoming international break in September. If he is « on the limit in terms of physical condition », as Flick expects of any national player, nothing should stand in the way of a nomination.

He got the message and used it as motivation, although he certainly didn’t like it. An added incentive should be the fact that he is one of BVB’s second-year captain candidates. In this role, however, he should actually be an actor and a talker.