The international match against Turkey will be an emotional European Championship test. Also for DFB captain Gündoğan. For sports director Völler, however, it is the sporting aspects that count first.
Rudi Völler sees no problem for DFB captain İlkay Gündoğan in the Turkey duel. The sports director does not want to attach any political significance to the national soccer team’s European Championship test.
“He is an experienced player. He knows it,” said Völler in an interview with “Blickpunkt Sport” on BR television and br24sport online. Duels against teams from the country of his ancestors have been normal for the 33-year-old for years – including with his respective clubs in the Champions League. “Of course it’s like that these days, that’s the spirit of the times, that many have different roots, different family ties. That’s completely normal in our time. Illy will be able to deal with that very well,” assured Völler.
Völler assured that he was also looking forward to the atmosphere in the already practically sold-out Berlin Olympic Stadium with tens of thousands of Turkish fans next Saturday (8.45 p.m./RTL). For him, it’s about a sporting test of strength – beyond possible political debates. “We’re playing against Turkey, it’s a normal international match,” said Völler.
In general, it cannot be prevented that football professionals also have to comment on social issues. However, one should not shine with “half-knowledge,” warned Völler. “The sport cannot hide,” said the former world-class striker. What is crucial, however, is “being able to bring joy with the football brand, even when times have become more difficult,” said Völler.
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