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FC Bayern – Nagelsmann sings praises of Roca after Stuttgart victory: “I love players who …”



Marco Roca impressed with a respectable performance in his starting eleven this season.

Bayern Munich’s permanent reservist Marco Roca impressed with a respectable performance at his starting eleven debut this season. This was also recognized by coach Julian Nagelsmann after the clear win against VfB Stuttgart. The appearance of the midfielder even caused the Bayern coach to self-criticize.

A completely safe 5-0 victory in Stuttgart means the early autumn championship for the German record champions. But after the game, Roca in particular caught the full attention of Nagelsmann, who gave the “incredibly lucky” Spaniard a warm hug.

“I praised Marc in the dressing room today. I rarely do that to praise players in front of the team. But today he really deserves it,” said Nagelsmann at the final press conference.

The 25-year-old was in the starting XI for the first time this season after the failures of Joshua Kimmich (lung problems after corona disease), Leon Goretzka (patellar tendon) and Corentin Tolisso (thigh). And Roca, who retired with a torn ligament earlier in the season, did a good job.

He brought 45 of his 49 passes to the man, reeled ten kilometers on the poor grass and won three of his four duels on the ground. Before the 2-0 he also captured the ball and thus initiated the second of the three goals from Serge Gnabry. No playful fireworks, but a strong performance, especially in view of his lack of game practice.

Nagelsmann: Roca? “I’m self-critical enough”

Before the 75 minutes in Stuttgart, he had only stood on the field for 78 minutes. “That’s nothing,” said Nagelsmann, adding: “We know that he has the footballing qualities. But the way he fought and accelerated had an extremely big impact on the game. In terms of content, it was an outstanding one Performance. He’s always had good connections and very good defensive defenses. “

Even before the game, Nagelsmann emphasized that Roca had “earned” his place in the first team after three short appearances against Dynamo Kiev, FC Barcelona (both Champions League) and Mainz 05. He “loves those players who are selfless and show the coach that it was obviously a mistake almost never to bring them.”

In this regard, he was “self-critical”, admitted the Bayern coach. “Today he showed me that it was a mistake to bring him so rarely. He did it very well,” he enthused about Roca, who would convince both “human” and “character”: He has a “giant.” -Heart”.

Nagelsmann: “Roca is not a mouse”

In addition to the fact that Roca “always wants to accelerate” in training, the Spaniard is also someone who “shows you that he is angry,” added Nagelsmann. Roca has a “strong character. He’s not a mouse that ducks away. He expresses his opinion and claims to play more often and does so,” explained Nagelsmann and added: “That’s a good thing.”

After Marcel Sabitzer had followed Nagelsmann from Leipzig in the summer and had cut Roca’s seasons even further compared to his first season, he was already associated with a farewell in winter.

The convincing performance at VfB could at least have puzzled Bayern’s managers. In addition, Roca, who moved from Espanyol Barcelona to the Isar for nine million euros in 2020, recently made it clear himself that his path in Munich was not yet over.

“You’d think that my performance so far was a failure. I don’t see it that way. It was a challenge and I’m proud of it. I’ve improved a lot as a footballer,” he told the Spanish in early December El Mundo and stated: “I wish I could be successful here. But in life you never know.” Now the tide may have turned.

Marc Roca: Performance data this season

contest Games Gates Assists Usage minutes
Bundesliga 2 100
Champions League 2 53