Germany mourns Gerd Muller, one of the most productive and efficient strikers in football history. With both Bayern Munich and West Germany, he has won more titles than anyone could dream of. Mueller had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for several years.
“What should I do with this fat little person?”
Gerd Muller signed with Bayern Munich in 1964, he was 18 years old. He believed that he would get more playing opportunities at Bayern Munich than in 1860 Munich, which also showed interest.
It seems silly now, but then Bayern Munich played in the Regionalliga Süd, while 1860 Munich played a higher series in the Bundesliga.
At Bayern, coach Kajkowski didn’t have a good eye for the new striker with his remarkably short legs. “What should I do with this fat little guy?” he asked. “It’s like lifting weights.”
At first, Muller basically kept the bench warm, but once he was allowed onto the field, there was nothing to stop him.
Everything about Bayern is thanks to Gerd Muller.
More than 1200 goals
With Muller, captain Beckenbauer, Breitner and Hoeness and goalkeeper Mayer, coach Udo Lattik has formed the best team in Europe. Muller was present when Bayern won their first European Cup, the previous Champions League, three years in a row. In 1974 he scored two goals in the final against Atlético Madrid. He also scored a goal in the final against Leeds the following year.
Muller was also a goal machine in his own competition. In total, he scored more than 1,200 goals for Bayern in 15 years. 7 times he was the top scorer in the German league. Bayern Munich has awarded 4 titles, according to icon Franz Beckenbauer in large part because of the ruthless striker: “Everything that has become for Bayern, is owed to Gerd Muller.”
Muller scored some great goals, but it was clinically effective. The German verb “müllern” is named after him. It means something like feeling the ball in the goal.
Muller scored some great goals, but it was clinically effective.
The nation’s bomber
Muller made his international lead at the 1970 World Cup. Although Pele stole the show with Brazil and became world champion, no one missed Muller’s efficiency. In Mexico he became the tournament’s top scorer with 10 goals. “Der Bomber der Nation” was born.
In 1972 followed that first title with the national team. West Germany became the European champion. At Heysel, the Germans defeated the Soviet Union 3-0, with almost two goals from Muller. In the semi-finals he had already won 2 against the Red Devils.
Müller (centre) became European champion in 1972 and world champion with West Germany in 1974.
“The most important football player in German history”
Muller celebrated the ultimate title in his country, when he scored the winning goal in the World Cup Final. Consequently, the Netherlands has suffered the biggest football shock ever.
Surprisingly, Mueller retired as an international right after that. He then scored 68 goals in 62 international matches. He was only 28 years old. For Jupp Heynckes, with whom he also played, he was “the most important football player in German history”.
After his career, he became addicted to alcohol, but with the help of his friends at Bayern Munich, he overcame his problem. In 2013, something strange happened. He disappeared at a training camp in Trento, Italy. Then he was found confused.
Two years later it was clear what was going on. Mueller had Alzheimer’s disease. He was slowly suffering in a nursing home. He was 75 years old.
In 2015, Mueller was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Gerd Muller Steckert
Boy: November 3, 1945
Passed away: August 15, 2021
nickname: The nation’s bomber
1963-1964 TSV 1861 Nördlingen (Dui)
1964-1979 Bayern Munich (bang)
1979-1981 Fort Lauderdale Strikers (VS)
1966-1974 West Germany (62 caps / 68 goals)
– 4 times German champion
4 times German Cup win
– 3x European Cup for National Champions
– 1x European Cup Winners’ Cup
European Champion in 1972
1974 World Champion
– Golden Ball (1970)
– 7 times Germany’s top scorer
365 goals in 427 Bundesliga matches (a record)
– 1,319 goals in 1,060 matches for Bayern and Germany combined
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