Wednesday, 13 March 2013


Who is he? Where does he play?

He is Schalke's 17 year old attacking midfielder who is following in the footsteps of Manuel Neuer, Mesut Ozil, Julian Draxler and Benedikt Howedes in being highly rated products off the conveyor belt at the Gelenkirchen club. He has this season made his Bundesliga debut***** and having witnessed Ozil and Lewis Holtby all move onto bright futures after breaking in at Schalke, Meyer has ambitions to follow.

Another German talent? Ah.... zzzzzz.....

Ah come on... don't be like that!? They may have produced a plethora of talent that has seen them dominate national championships at youth level and look set to follow the success on the senior level, but they are making fine technical players who are good to watch. Meyer is one of those, he can use both feet comfortably, can use intelligent movement to find space in the final third and can thread a killer ball through to the attackers, making him a clever, intricate, creative playmaker with an intelligence beyond his 17 years.

17!? This lad seems to be the real deal?

He's been incredibly prolific at youth level so if that's any indication, then he's going to go very far indeed. He notably impressed at the U-17 European Championship and led Germany to the final, finishing as the tournament’s top goalscorer in the process. His 2011/12 season as a whole was phenomenal though, scoring 24 goals and assisting a further 17 in all competitions, a remarkable record considering his position and age. 

Later in that year he was awarded the Fritz Walter Silver Medal award for his age group and this season was taken to Schalke's Winter training camp after hitting 11 goals in 15 games for the under-19s. He played in an exhibition game against Bayern Munich which caused Schalke's head coach Jens Keller to wax lyrical "you don't expect to see anybody play the ball the way he did in a game like this" he said.

Will he be playing for Schalke soon then?

Sporting Director Horst Heldt has said he may be promoted early, and if he is you will see a versatile attacker who can glide past markers with a dribble, making him comfortable in playing right across an attacking midfield 3, like Mario Gotze in that he is equally at home on the wing. Although he has shown his scoring touch in the youth teams, he remains more of a creator, choosing to pass to others who are in better positions than go for goal himself. 

He's very small too isn't he?

Yep, he is. He stands at 5ft 7 inches in fact, the same height as his role model Lionel Messi "I can learn a lot from him. He is the best player in the world and always remains humble" he said. He said it, not us, but if he does end up with just a fraction of the ability Messi has, he will be one very special player. Schalke have high hopes for him and in a club that are lacking somebody to piece all the fluid attacking play together, Meyer could make his long-awaited break through sooner or later.

****** he made his debut against Mainz and played a huge role in supplying a late equaliser for Michel Bastos. He showed his vast composure and vision by controlling a pass under pressure in the final third and laying it off calmly. He is only 17, this lad will indeed, go very far.

I'll get my college teacher on and suggest some further reading:

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