Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Bavaria Greatest all-team 23-member team

Franz Beckenbauer and Gerd Muller

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

East German Players after 1990
German Americans/American Germans
German Turks 
German-born Players Capped by Other National Teams
Germany All-Time Team After Beckenbauer

Bavaria is the home of FC Bayern Munich, 1. FC Nuremberg, FC Augsburg and TSV 1860 München.  If there were an All-Time World Cup, Bavaria could create a team that is as good as any country in the world and this would be 23 players I would bring to the tournament. 

With an area of 70,550.19 square kilometres (27,200 sq mi), Bavaria is the largest German state by land area comprising roughly a fifth of the total land area of Germany. With 13 million inhabitants, it is Germany's second-most-populous state after North Rhine-Westphalia. Bavaria's main cities are Munich (its capital and largest city and also the third largest city in Germany), Nuremberg and Augsburg.

I have done many regional German teams:
-- Northern Germany/Norddeutschland (Schleswig-Holstein, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Lower Saxony and the two city-states Hamburg and Bremen).  Mecklenburg-Vorpommern is also covered in Eastern German regional All-Time Team.
-- Western Germany/Westdeutschland without North Rhine-Westphalia (Hesse, the Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate).
-- Eastern Germany (not only GDR players): Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia and city of Berlin).  
-- I am not creating a team for Central Germany/Mitteldeutschland since the players from Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia are well-covered on my Eastern German regional team, and I put Hesse on my Western Germany team.  For Southern Germany,  I have done an all-time team for Baden-Württemberg and this Bavarian team.
Philipp Lahm and Thomas Muller

GK: Sepp Maier (Metten)
Nicknamed "The cat from Anzing", Maier was considered one of the greatest goalkeeper ever in the 1970's. He had 95 caps for West Germany, winning the European Championship in 1972 and the World Cup at home in 1974. For club football, he played his entire career with Bayern Munich. He also won three straight European Cups for Bayern Munich.  He was German Footballer of the Year: 1975, 1977, 1978.

Sepp Maier
GK: Hans Jakob  (Munich)
Jakob was the goalkeeper for Germany at World Cup Finals in 1934 and 1938.  Jakob was a member of the famous "Breslau Elf" that defeated Denmark 8–0 in 1937.  For his club career, He played over 1000 games as goalkeeper for SSV Jahn Regensburg, and also for FC Bayern Munich from 1942 to 1945.  He was also a track and field star.

GK: Raimond Aumann(Augsburg)
Aumann started his career was a backup to  Jean-Marie Pfaff at Bayern Munich.  In 1988, he became the starter after Pfaff left the club. In 1994, he played a season in Turkey for Beşiktaş J.K.  He had played 4 times for West Germany.  He went to Italia 1990 as the backup keeper as West Germany won its third World Cup.

RB:  Stefan Reuter (Dinkelsbühl)
Stefan Reuter played 69 times for Germany between 1987 and 1998.  He was Germany's Golden Generation in the 1990's that won the World Cup in 1990 and the European Championship in 1996.  He played with FC Nürnberg, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund. He won the Champions' League in 1996 with Borussia Dortmund.

RB/CB:  Markus Babbel (Munich)
Markus Babbel was capped 51 times, scoring one goal for Germany.  He was a part of the Euro 1996 winning team.  He played for Bayern Munich, Hamburger SV, Liverpool and Blackburn Rovers.  Babbel also played for his country at the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the European Championship in 2000.

SW/CM: Franz Beckenbauer (Munich)
Franz Beckenbauer was one of the best ever player in history.  Known as Der Kaiser, he was credited with revolutionizing the sweeper position.  He was twice selected European Footballer of the Year. Beckenbauer appeared 103 times for West Germany and played in three FIFA World Cups, winning the World Cup in 1974 and the European Championship in 1972.  At the club level, he won three straight European Cup with Bayern Munich in 1974, 1975 and 1976. He also played for Hamburger and NY Cosmos.

Franz Beckenbauer 
CB: Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck (Munich)
Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck was the center-back for both West Germany and Bayern Munich during the 1970's.  Between 1971 and 1978, he played 44 times for West Germany.  He won the European Championship in 1972 and the World Cup in 1974.  He was a one club man for Bayern Munich, where he won three straight European Cup.

SW: Klaus Augenthaler (Fürstenzell)
Klaus Augenthaler played his entire career with with FC Bayern Munich. He won seven Bundesliga titles.  He was voted as one of greatest players in Bayern Munich's history.  For West Germany, he was the starting sweeper for West Germany as they won the Would Cup in 1990.  He also went to the World Cup Finals 4 years earlier in Mexico.

RB/LB/DM: Philipp Lahm (Munich)
Philipp Lahm was the captain of the 2014 World Cup winning team. He had 113 caps for Germany from 2004 to 2014.  He was included in the World Cup team of the tournament in 2006 and 2010.  For club football, he played his entire career with Bayern Munich, except for a two year loan spell with VfB Stuttgart. He also won the treble in 2013 when Bayern Munich won the Champions' League, the German Cup and the Bundesliga on the same year.  He is a member of Bayern Munich's Hall of Fame.
Philipp Lahm
LB/CM: Paul Breitner (Kolbermoor)
Breitner was the first player to score a goal at two different WC Final match.  From 1971 to 1982, he had 48 caps for West Germany. He won the European Championship in 1972 and then, a the World Cup in 1974. He spent most of his career with Bayern Muinch and went to play for Real Madrid in Spain.  During his club career, Breitner won seven National Championships with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid as well as the German Cup (1971, 1982) and Spanish Cups (1975). 

DM/CB: Ludwig Goldbrunner (Munich)
Ludwig Goldbrunner went to the World Cup Finals in 1938 for Germany.  He became known in 1937 as one of the "Breslau-Elf" (Breslau Eleven) players, after they thrashed Denmark with an 8:0 score.  He spent his entire career with Bayern Munich, winning the German title in 1932.  He was considered to be one of Bayern's greatest players. 

DM: Dietmar Hamann (Waldsassen)
Throughout his career, Dietmar Hamann has played for Bayern Munich, Newcastle United, Liverpool, and Manchester City.  He played 59 times for Germany between 1997 and 2006, and represented his nation in two World Cups and two European Championships, reaching the 2002 FIFA World Cup Final. 
CM: Helmut Haller (Augsburg)
Haller was one of the best midfielders in the world in the 1960's.  In 1966, he helped West Germany to reach the World Cup Final in 1966, forming one of the best midfield of the tournament.  He also went to Chile in 1962 and Mexico in 1970.  He started with Augsburg.  He was also known for his stints in Italy, playing for Bologna and Juventus.

CM: Bastian Schweinsteiger (Kolbermoor)
Bastian Schweinsteiger was an important player for both club and country.  He was capped 121 times. He went to three European Championships and as many World Cups, including their victory at the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Schweinsteiger is the youth product of Bayern Munich.  He won the 2013 Champions' league title with Bayern Munich. Late in his career, he played for Manchester United and Chicago Fire.

AM: Thomas Hitzlsperger (Munich)
Hitzlsperger started his career for Aston Villa in England, before returning to Germany to play for Stuttgart, where he played between 2005 and 2010 and won the Bundesliga in 2007. He also played for Lazio, West Ham United, Wolfsburg and Everton. He earned 52 caps.  He appeared at the 2006 World Cup Finals and then, two years at the Euro 2008.  After his retirement, he came out as gay, the highest-profile male footballer to do so.

RW: Ernst Lehner (Augsburg)
Ernst Lehner played for Germany in the 1934 World Cup and the 1938 World Cup. In total, he made 65 appearances and scored 31 goals for the national team. Lehner was a member of the Breslau Eleven that beat Denmark 8–0 in Breslau in 1937. His specialty was corner kicks; gaining a reputation for often trying (and succeeding) to convert them directly. 

CM: Bernd Schuster (Augsburg)
Schuster was the star of the Euro 1980 winning team, but disagreed with the German Football Association and seldom played for West Germany after the tournament.  He was a star at La Liga in the 1980's, playing for Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid. He was the first player to have won the Spanish Cup for the big three. He later played for Bayer Leverkusen.

CM: Lothar Matthaus (Erlangen)
Lothar Matthaus was known for captaining the West German team in winning the World Cup in 1990.  He was the European Player of the Year and the first ever World Player of the year in 1990. He played in five FIFA World Cups (1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998), a record for an outfield player, and holds the record for the most World Cup matches played by a single player (25 games). He also won the Euro 1980 in Italy, and played in the 1984, 1988, and 2000 European Championships.
Lothar Matthaus
AM: Felix Magath (Aschaffenburg)
Felix Magath was the son of an American GI and a German woman.  He played for Hamburger between 1976 and 1986, winning the European Cup in 1983. He was a part of the great West German national team of the 1980's, winning the Euro 1980.  He also played in the 1982 and 1986 World Cup Finals. 82 and Mexico 1986. He had 43 caps between 1977 and 1986.

FW: Mario Gotze (Memmingen)
Mario Gotze scored the winning goal at the Final of the 2014 World Cup Finals in Brazil against Argentina.  He also played in Euro 2016.  At the time of writing, he has over 60 caps.  He started his career with Borussia Dortmund, where he played under manager Jurgen Klopp.  In 2013, he moved to Bayern Munich and became the most expensive German player ever.  He returned to Borussia Dortmund in 2016.

Mario Gotze
FW: Thomas Muller (Weilheim in Oberbayern)
Thomas Muller made his professional debut the season before the 2010 World Cup Finals in South Africa with Bayern Munich.   In South Africa, he won the Golden Boot as the top scorer of the tournament.  Between the two World Cup Finals, Bayern Munich won one Champions' league and went to the Final two other times.  At Brazil 2014, he won Silver Boot by scoring 5 goals, but he faile to score at the World Cup Finals four years later in Russia.

ST: Karl-Heinz Riedle (Weiler-Simmerberg)
Riedle was a key member of the Die Mannschaft in the 1990's.  He won the World Cup  in 1990, and went to Euro 1992 and USA 1994.  He was known as the backup strikers to Jurgen Klinsmann and Rudi Voller.  His club career was best remembered playing for Lazio and Borussia Dortmund.  He won the Champions' League in 1997 with Borussia Dortmund. 

ST: Gerd Muller (Nördlingen)
"Der Bomber" was widely considered to be the greatest striker in history. He scored 68 goals in 62 matches for Die Mannschaft.   He scored 365 goals in 427 Bundesliga appearance, mostly with Bayern Muinch.   He won three straight European Cup with Bayern Munich in 1974, 1975 and 1976. At the international level, he played over 60 times for West Germany.  He won the World Cup in 1974 and the European Championship in 1972. He was the European Player of the Year in 1970.  He also played in the NASL at the end of his career.

Gerd Muller

Honorable Mention
Holger Badstuber, Hans Pflügler, Lars Bender.

Squad Explanation
-- The criteria for selection is based upon the birth place of the players.
-- With Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Muller, Sepp Maier, Lother Matthaus, Philipp Lahm, Paul Breitner, Helmut Haller, etc, this team is as good as some of the best all-time teams in the world. 
-- Three players have won the Ballon d'Or.  They are Franz Beckenbauer, Lother Matthaus and Gerd Muller.
-- Gerd Muller and Thomas Muller were World Cup Golden Boot winners while Helmut Haller finished second in 1966.  The team also consisted of three of four German World Cup winning captains, namely Franz Beckenbauer(1974), Lother Matthaus (1990) and Philipp Lahm (2014).
-- Most players selected have played for Bayern Munich. Only six players never played for their senior team. They are Karl-Heinz Riedle, Felix Magath, Bernd Schuster, Helmut Haller, Thomas Hitzlsperger and Ernst Lehner.  Hitzlsperger played for their youth team.
-- Not all Bayern Munich's German greats were born in the region. For example, Karl Heinz Rummenigge was born in North Rhine-Westphalia. Toni Kroos who was born in East Germany spent his youth career with Bayern Munich.  
-- TSV 1860 München is not represented here.  Not a single player has played for them. FC Augsburg has a much stronger presence. Helmut Haller and Karl-Heinz Riedle played for them.
-- Fourteen of the players selected had won the World Cup for Germany.  Only 6 players did not win either a World Cup or an European Championship.
-- The backbone of the 1974 World Cup winning team came from the region.  Franz Beckenbauer, Sepp Maier, Paul Breitner, Gerd Muller were important players while Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck contributed.  -- In 1990, Lothar Matthaus was the captain of the World Cup winning team.  Stefan Reuter and Klaus Augenthaler were on the starting lineup.  Karl-Heinz Riedle was an important player coming off the bench.
-- In 2014, Bavarian players again played a significant role.  Philipp Lahm was their captain while Bastian Schweinsteiger was a veteran player on the team. Thomas Muller was their top scorer. Mario Gotze scored the World Cup winning goal in the Final.  
-- The team has too many central midfielders. I have Bernd Schuster, Lother Matthaus, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Dietmar Hamann and Helmut Haller.  Ludwig Goldbrunner, Franz Beckenbauer and Paul Breitner also played there.
-- Franz Beckenbauer spent most of his national team career playing as a central midfielder.  He was a central midfielder in the World Cup Finals of 1966 and 1970.  West German manager Helmut Schön did not want to use him in the sweeper position. I have a blog post explaining his position here.  .




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