The 2017 ESPN FC 100 was launched on Monday and the reactions have been sturdy across the soccer world. Wednesday noticed Man Metropolis and Belgium star Kevin De Bruyne discussing his rating as the highest attacking midfielder on the planet. On Thursday, Bayern Munich stars Manuel Neuer (No. 1 goalkeeper) and Robert Lewandowski (No. 1 striker) discuss to ESPN FC about their progress.
ESPN FC: It has been a tough 12 months for you, one beset with accidents. Are you happy that you have been rated the No. 1 goalkeeper no matter that?
Neuer: I really feel very honoured to obtain this award though 2017 wasn’t the most effective 12 months for me in a sporting sense, in my view. However it’s going to spur me on additional to earn the identical end result within the ballot on account of my performances within the close to future.
ESPN FC: You have by no means had this a lot day without work from enjoying soccer in your life earlier than. What have you ever been doing over the previous few months?
Neuer: My day by day schedule is filled with rehab train, physiotherapy and all kinds of coaching workouts. Week by week, there’s extra I can do and it is getting nearer to actual soccer. I miss the ball, clearly. However there’s mild on the finish of the tunnel now.
ESPN FC: Are you assured of being again on the pitch in time for key matches with Bayern – and the World Cup – subsequent 12 months?
Neuer: It has been a prolonged damage lay-off. However there is not any doubt that I will likely be again.
ESPN FC: You have been voted the No. 1 striker on the planet by ESPN FC. How do you’re feeling about getting that type of recognition?
Lewandowski: It is a tremendous feeling to be voted greatest striker. I am actually blissful to obtain that type of recognition from the ESPN FC jury. Thanks very a lot!
ESPN FC: Has this been your best-ever 12 months? And are there areas during which you’re feeling you may nonetheless enhance?
Lewandowski: What would I say is that the season to date is trying good, particularly with so many avenues nonetheless being open to me. With FC Bayern, we’re well-positioned in all competitions — the Bundesliga, the Champions League and DFB-Pokal — and as well as, there’s the World Cup with Poland to return.
I work on a regular basis on enhancing my sport additional, whether or not training free-kicks, penalties or the capturing approach with my left foot. However there’s one other issue that goes past particular person enchancment, and that is the mix play along with your teammates. That’s what in the end brings success.
ESPN FC: Being a striker means many issues within the trendy sport, from “false 9” to “goal man” and every thing in-between. How would you characterise your personal enjoying fashion?
Lewandowski: I discover it tough to match myself to several types of strikers or to see them as position fashions presently in my profession. I imagine I’ve developed my very own fashion and I’m focussed on changing into higher every day.
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