Toni Kroos no longer fits in today's football: Former Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness

Ex-Bayern Munich supremo has been critical of Toni Kroos’ performances of late, particularly in Germany’s 0-2 defeat against England in the Euro 2020 round-of-16.

Toni Kroos in action(Image Credit: Twitter)

Former Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness did not mince his words as he criticised Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos’ performances in the Euro 2020. The ex-Bayern Munich supremo was particularly critical of Kroos’ display in Germany’s 0-2 defeat against England in the round-of-16, saying the midfielder “no longer fits with today’s football”. Hoeness also expressed his disappointment with the German team switching to a back three in their formation. Following Germany’s elimination from Euro 2020, Kroos announced his retirement from the international stage. The 2014 World Cup winner brings an end to an illustrious international career that saw him earn 106 caps over 11 years.

‘Our football is played vertically’

Speaking about Germany’s performances at the Euros, Hoeness told Sport1, “The first two games in the World Cup qualifiers were pretty decent with a back four, then he changed to a back three, it was completely unnecessary. Why? (Former Germany manager Joachim) Low wanted to integrate Kroos. If we had played with Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka and Thomas Muller in midfield, Serge Gnabry and Leroy Sane on the wings and Kai Havertz upfront, we would be in a completely different position today. I’m 100% sure of that.

“I like Kroos, he showed world-class performances in the past. He was great for Bayern – but his way of playing is completely done. He no longer fits with today’s football. We are 1-0 down against England in the last quarter of an hour, Kroos no longer crossed the halfway line. He played sideways, then sideways again, until the opposing defence had organized themselves.”

Uli Hoeness was not particularly happy with the sideways passing and insisted that their football is all about playing the ball forward. “Bayern players are super self-confident guys who had a big say with Hansi Flick. I know they were totally unhappy with the situation, with Low’s tactics. Yet they accepted it. I don’t understand, I didn’t know them like that. They should have said ‘Toni Kroos no longer fits into this football with his sideways game. Our football is played vertically. The ball is played forward all the time'”.

Toni Kroos responds

Later, the former Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos responded to Hoeness’ criticism, taking a swipe at his stint as a pundit for broadcaster RTL. Kroos wrote on Twitter, “Uli Hoeness is a man with great knowledge of football (even if it wasn’t enough for RTL), little interest in polemics and completely at peace with himself. Similar to his greenkeeper.”

Kroos has enjoyed a decorated career till now at the club and international level. Having established himself as a world-class player at Bayern, he moved to Real Madrid, where he achieved monumental success. In that period, he was a crucial part of the German national team as well.

Sportslumo Desk

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