Mönchengladbach fans haven’t had much to cheer about this season, currently lying 10th in what can only be described as a mediocre season. Out of the Europa League, but still in contention for a spot.
It all went wrong in the transfer window for ‘Gladbach. After finishing fourth in the Bundesliga ‘Gladbach’s players were getting much expected transfer speculation. Reus, Dante, Neustädter, Arango, Ter Stegen and a few more were standout performers in a standout season. So for a team with not much financial backing it was always going to be hard to keep hold of those players.
Unfortunately for the foals this turned out to be the case. Dante, Reus and Neustädter left to Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 respectively, it doesn’t take an eagle eye to see they’ve taken to their new clubs like a house on fire.
Enter Luuk de Jong, Granit Xhaka and Álvaro Domínguez. With the money generated from the three aforementioned exits, Borussia brought in two of Europe’s hottest properties. Luuk de Jong’s arrival in Mönchengladbach was expected to be the answer to the loss of goals that Reus provided, although de Jong would bring a different type of striker to Borussia-Park, he would ultimately bring the same outcome, or so you’d think.
Having scored 25 times in 33 starts for Twente in the Eredivise last season, the transition to the Bundesliga seemed like the perfect option for his career. De Jong has turned out to be one of the Bundesliga’s biggest flops this season, with only three goals to his name in 11 starts. It’s starting to look like the 12 million euros wasn’t money well spent.
Because of the departures it does allow current players to step up to the plate and shine, that’s exactly when Patrick Herrmann and Juan Arango have done. Both of their talents weren’t unknown prior to this season, but they were by no means as good for Mönchengladbach as they have been now.
Juan Arango has had comments aimed at him that read: “excluding Messi, Arango has the best left foot in the world.” Herrmann has been playing brilliant, he’s managed to pick up six goals and three assists, but it’s the string of constant performances that makes him stand out.
It’s not all doom and gloom for Mönchengladbach, though. Recently they were unfortunate enough to go out of the Europa League to Lazio. After a spirited display against the former two-time Serie A champions in the first leg, Mönchengladbach just weren’t capable to hold their own in Italy. This allows Lucien Favre and his men to completely focus on getting into Europe again, which with the departures would be considered quite a feat.
Currently Mönchengladbach are finding themselves at the wrong end of the form table, they’re win-less in four Bundesliga fixtures and six in all competitions. But with a series of important games on the horizon it’s extremely important these performances get rectified to keep European football in their reach.