Christoph Knasmüllner (29), Rapid Wien midfielder, could have had a career similar to that of David Alaba (29), according to Hermann Gerland (67).
Knasmüllner moved to FC Bayern in 2008 on the recommendation of Heiko Vogel with Alaba from the youth department of Austria Wien.
“He was a great talent. David had a better attitude, but Knasi was at least as good, if not better, in footballing terms,” said Gerland, coach of the second team of the German record champions at the time, in the podcast The sixteenth.
Unlike Alaba, Knasmüllner couldn’t do much with criticism. “He played for me in the third division in his first year, he loses the ball, doesn’t run after him – he was substituted. That happened six or seven times,” reported Gerland. “Then I said: ‘Now you are not playing. That is not possible, I will not allow that.'”
From that moment on, Knasmüllner’s advisor created pressure through the media, whereupon the player decided against extending his contract with FCB. “Long story short, he moved to Inter Milan.”
Knasmüllner: From FC Bayern to Rapid Vienna
Knasmüllner was only supposed to stay there for six months and make eight appearances for the Nerazzurri Primavera team before signing with the German second division club FC Ingolstadt.
After a decent season, he only wavered between the reserve team and the professional bench at the Schanzern. Via Admira Wacker Mölding and FC Barnsley, the midfielder went to Rapid in 2018.
“This is no longer a first-class club,” says Gerland. “There he plays, is substituted in and out. And David Alaba, who did everything I asked for, has become a world star. These are so small things.”
Gerland: “Coach life has become much more difficult”
Knasmüllner’s contract with the Austrian capital club runs until 2023. In the current season he has 21 appearances and eight goal participations (four goals, four assists).
“I would have liked to see Christoph Knasmüllner have made it because he was very good at football,” said Gerland. “That is also a problem for the young coaches who then want to win. The measure of all things is victory. Of course, the consultants also have a good connection to the press, the coach has a headwind and has to justify himself.”
The conclusion of the assistant to U21 national coach Antonio Di Salvo: “The coaching life has become much more difficult.”