National team: Sané’s false emotions: Mea culpa after the stupidity

National team
Sané’s false emotions: Mea culpa after stupidity

Didn’t have himself under control in the friendly against Austria and saw the red card: Leroy Sané. photo

© Christian Charisius/dpa

Leroy Sané is in top form. The brutal red push from Vienna therefore does not match the Bayern professional’s momentum. At least he is spared the tournament fate of a former DFB striker.

Leroy Sané knew exactly what he had to do. After this stupidity, a mea culpa was due in the neon lights of the basement corridor in the Ernst Happel Stadium. With his admission of guilt after his red card in the final and completely unsuccessful European Championship test match of the year against Austria, the 27-year-old was unable to dispel the general German football frustration. However, his description of himself as a scapegoat, delivered in a gentle voice, was a verbal escape.

“The game is on me today, it’s on me. I have to control myself, that can’t happen, I let the team down,” said Sané. An employee of the DFB media department had previously placed it centrally in front of the cameras that had been set up. The action seemed a little orchestrated.

Nevertheless, the statement was enough to save his honor. At other times, football professional Sané might have marched wordlessly through the so-called mixed zone with large headphones over his ears after such an action.

There are no comparison options. After the push attack against Austria’s Mainz player Philipp Mwene, Sané received the first dismissal of his by no means always straightforward career. It was the 27th expulsion in DFB international match history.

The list includes prominent names from Günter Netzer to Lothar Matthäus, Miroslav Klose and Bastian Schweinsteiger. More robust characters like Carsten Ramelow or Jérôme Boateng even got hit twice. But that’s of no use to Sané at the moment.

Minimum three game suspension

He hasn’t talked about the impending ban yet, but the media’s confession of remorse may have another meaning when the responsible world association FIFA decides on the sanction. The statutes stipulate a minimum of three games for an assault of this kind. There could also be more.

It is already certain that Sané will only be able to take part again in the last of four planned European Championship test games until the opening game on June 14th in the Munich Arena. In any case, Nagelsmann has to tackle the final preparation without the Munich player, who was recently placed because of his noticeably good form.

At least as things stand, Sané is not threatened with a tournament ban. Otherwise it would be a dramatic continuation of his previously frustrating goalless European Championship and World Cup history with the last-minute ejection in 2018 by Joachim Löw and the injury shortly before the opening game in Qatar exactly a year ago as negative highlights.

Only in very specific, more serious exceptional cases can a ban be extended to other competitions. Sané is spared the tournament fate of Mike Hanke. The former Wolfsburg player was sent off in the game for third place in the 2005 Confederations Cup against Mexico. He therefore had to serve his ban in the first two World Cup games in 2006. The national coach at the time, Jürgen Klinsmann, nominated him anyway. Hanke was then in the game for third place against Portugal (3:1).

Sané definitely wants to play more tournament games next summer. And his recent performances have been promising. Club coach Thomas Tuchel and national coach Nagelsmann motivated the not always easy character to perform at his best. Only in the November games in the DFB jersey against Turkey (2:3) and Austria (0:2) was the worm in it again.

“It wasn’t anything personal against Philipp, it was my own performance, as I said, it shouldn’t happen to me,” said Sané, explaining the inglorious red card incident. “I’m motivated, I want us to go in the right direction,” he said.

Colleagues also show understanding

In any case, Nagelsmann meant something different about the lack of emotions, of which Sané showed the wrong ones and too much of them. Nevertheless, the coach and his teammates publicly supported him. “It’s normal emotions that happen. Of course it wasn’t beneficial for the team. It’s somehow also football. It’s also part of being emotional,” said center forward Niclas Füllkrug.

Nagelsmann complained about a lack of cleverness. In this situation, Sané could have provoked a red card for his opponent instead of being thrown off the pitch himself. “It’s also a maturation process, a bit like the dirtbag mentality,” said the national coach.

Rudi Völler was not so lenient. “You can make mistakes, Leroy also apologized to the team in the dressing room. That’s all well and good, but, of course, you have to show passion at the right time,” complained the DFB sports director, who was at the 1990 World Cup the spitting attack by Holland’s Frank Rijkaard – completely unjustified – was sent off the pitch.


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