The stars are running away from RB Leipzig, the Saxons are facing a change. For Max Eberl, however, this is no reason to worry.
The magic feet and the midfield engine are already gone, the defense boss is about to jump – but Max Eberl doesn’t panic because of that. “I can understand the disappointment and concerns of the fans. No club, no responsible person and no coach in the world likes to lose players of this format,” said the sporting director of RB Leipzig of the Leipziger Volkszeitung: “But the whole thing did not catch us unprepared – and I can promise that we will have a great and exciting team again.”
In his first transfer summer in Saxony, Eberl is rock solid. The departures of the exceptional players Christopher Nkunku (to Chelsea/60 million), Dominik Szoboszlai (Liverpool/70) and Konrad Laimer (Bayern/free transfer) hurt a lot – but also flush many millions into the coffers of the German cup winners.
And the next rain of money is already imminent. Josko Gvardiol is on course to become a Manchester City player and the most expensive defender in the world at a transfer fee of €100m. “Josko and his advisors have given us their wish to move to Manchester City. We are in talks with Manchester. There is nothing more to say at the moment,” said Eberl.
So that the Saxons remain competitive at the highest level, the head of sport has enough money available – but the people of Leipzig will not pay “moon prices”, assured Eberl.
RB Leipzig: Eberl’s hands were tied
Part of the sum has already been reinvested in the additions Christoph Baumgartner (Hoffenheim/24 million), Benjamin Sesko (24) and Nicolas Seiwald (both Salzburg/20). It is questionable whether the young hopefuls, according to Eberl “really good guys”, will immediately serve as an adequate replacement in the Champions League and in the fight for the German championship. The loss of stars and audience favorites is too serious.
The truth is: Eberl’s hands were tied when he left. Liverpool activated Szoboszlai’s exit clause and made him a record sale for Leipzig, Nkunku’s move to Chelsea had been certain for a long time and, according to Eberl, “unfortunately there was no alternative in terms of sport and economy”. Laimer’s contract expired, and the Austrian had already signed in Munich in the winter. Eberl can at least get involved in the negotiations for the Croatian defensive edge Gvardiol.
“Even before my time, RB Leipzig always managed to catch blatant departures. We’re working on that with great enthusiasm and conviction right now,” emphasized Eberl, who was able to book the contract extension with dribbling artist Dani Olmo as a success this summer, for example. In addition, the sports director announced the commitment of other “extremely exciting” players – so no reason to panic.