King of the Royal Club
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The Best George Best
“Best” in English means “the best.” Many Englishmen really consider George Best to be the best player in the history of British football. He owned feints no worse than the…

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Thierry Henry, nicknamed Titi
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GERD MULLER

Gerd Muller owns a whole constellation of football records. He was the top scorer of the world championships (until 2010) – scored 14 goals. The best scorer of the German national team – 68 goals in 62 matches. Müller scored 70 goals in European Cups, playing for Bayern Munich, and this is also a record achievement. He also set a record in the Bundesliga for one season – 40 goals scored. And in general, became the most productive player in the history of the Bundesliga – 365 goals. In 5 league matches, the FRG scored 5 goals each.

In short, the scorer of God, the thunderstorm of goalkeepers. Meanwhile, when 19-year-old Muller appeared in “Bavaria”, his future partners even doubted that this clumsy-looking guy in general is capable of deftly handling the ball. The goalkeeper of Bavaria, Sepp Meier, in his football memoirs describes a meeting with Muller as follows: “When we saw him for the first time, we laughed to tears. Round-headed, with short-cropped hair, with a disproportionately large torso, bowlegged. Muler4 “I’m a scorer from Nordlingen,” Muller hesitantly introduced himself. We started to laugh again. However, when we first saw Gerd at a training session, very soon there was not a trace of our ridicule. He took the training as seriously as the match. Scoring goals in a training game, he exulted, as when scoring a goal in the next round of the Bundesliga. In general, as soon as he approached the penalty area, it seemed that this guy was charging with high voltage current. He was in a fever, he was shaking, he was spinning like lightning. In short, it was a real nightmare for any defender. We were convinced of this quite often. Three of us, four of us defenders surrounded him, but he beat everybody. When he made his debut in the match against Freiburg in the fall of 1964, he immediately scored four goals. ”

In a word, having come to Bavaria, Müller had every reason to introduce himself as a scorer from Nordlingen. Bombardier was indeed from God, and Nordlingen – the name of his native town: an ordinary German village located between Munich and Nuremberg. Nevertheless, there was a football club, serving in one of the “local” German leagues, and a good stadium. Gerd started playing football on it.
True, at first he could do it only on Sundays, and on weekdays Gerd worked in a textile factory. Prior to that, from childhood, he had to work on farms as a jack of all trades. Forced the need: the future great scorer was the sixth child in a poor peasant family and at fifteen was left without a father. Unfortunately, because of the village work in the school he happened to go far every day … Muler5 But on the football field his talents were manifested in full brilliance. It was incredibly difficult for the defenders to take the ball from him – he could wade through any barriers with him and in addition he was very strong on his feet. But most importantly, he had a truly supernatural flair: Muller was just where the ball came after the most incredible bounces. And he knew how to score goals in the most inconceivable, it would seem, situations – in a fight at the gate, he pushed the ball into the net with his hip, knee, back, heel. Because of this, many of his goals seemed even “awkward”, clumsy. But goals are goals, he scored a lot of them, and they brought victory.
At first, he played for the youth team of the TSV Nordlingen club. And in the first season for the main part of the 69 goals scored by the team, 46 spent Muller. The trainer of “Nordlingen” before played in “Nuremberg” and pushed away the pupil in this club. But the whole football district has already started talking about a talented boy, he began to receive more and more attractive offers. The fate of Gerd decided … his mother. It was she who persuaded him to stop at Bavaria, when breeders of the eminent club appeared on the horizon. So the “scorer from Nordlingen” was in Munich.
It may be surprising, but the football player, who scored goals in almost every match, didn’t immediately come to the heart of the then Bayern coach Yugoslav Zlatko Tchaikovsky, precisely because of his peasant appearance. The coach was not shy about the words behind his eyes: “Our club needs elegant, elegant players, not tillers”. But Gerd continued to score. And the Yugoslav coach in 1968 left the club. Two years earlier, Bayern won the German Cup. In the same year 1966, Helmut Schön introduced the scorer from Munich to the German team. And soon Muller became the most formidable of her arms and perhaps the most popular German football player of her time.
At the 1970 World Championships, he scored 10 goals. True, in the dramatic semifinal match with the Italians, already in extra time, the Germans lost – 3: 4. But two goals out of three scored Muller. In the same year he received the Golden Boot as the most effective scorer of the national championships of European countries. Then Müller had 38 goals. In 1972 in Brussels, the German national team in the final match for the title of European champion came together with the USSR national team and won 3: 0. Two goals were “Mullerian”.

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