Beier: "I thought about quitting football" | OneFootball

Beier: "I thought about quitting football" | OneFootball

Icon: TSG Hoffenheim

TSG Hoffenheim

·3 April 2024

Beier: "I thought about quitting football"

Article image:Beier: "I thought about quitting football"

Maximilian Beier has experienced a meteoric rise this season. The 21-year-old forward already has 13 goals to his name this season and was also on target in the game against Bayer Leverkusen last weekend. His performances were recently rewarded with a first call-up to the national team. But around eight years ago, he had actually given up on professional football. In a big SPIELFELD interview, Beier reveals why he wanted to quite football during his time at the Cottbus academy and what impact his outstanding season has had off the pitch.

13 goals and seven assists – Maximilian Beier is having a perfect season. Following a two-year loan spell at Hannover 96 in the second tier, the 21-year-old has established himself in the Bundesliga – and staked his claim for bigger things. Julian Nagelsmann gave the striker his first Germany call-up in March – a vindication of his development even if he did not play. Beier's performances on the pitch are helping him off the pitch too: "I'm become more self-confident, I've noticed that recently in everyday life," he declared. "I always used to be a very shy guy. For example, I always used to discuss with my girlfriend in the supermarket about which of us should ask the assistant where we'd find certain products." That now stresses him out less – as do interviews, even if they are still not his favourite thing.

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Nowadays he is a sought-after interview partner, but his career almost never materialised. During his time at the youth boarding school in Cottbus, he was plagued by homesickness. "During that time, I also thought about perhaps quitting football completely," said Beier, before adding: "The distance to my parents and being alone in Cottbus was extremely stressful for me, I sometimes struggled to cope." It had such an impact that he had already put his aspiring football career on the back burner. "At some point, my father cancelled my registration for everything in Cottbus purely out of care. Everything was organised for me to stop playing sport competitively. I was even enrolled at a school back home." His coach at the time, Patrick Schrade, convinced the talented attacker to stay – and now the 21-year-old can hope to take part in the EUROs on home turf.

Also in the April issue of SPIELFELD: Florian Grillitsch looks at the development of professional football, Wout Weghorst takes part in our "No comment" series and Ozan Kabak clears up stereotypes about Türkiye. Academy director Frank Kramer speaks in an interview about his start at TSG, the Rhine-Neckar Olympic Training Centre is profiled ahead of the Summer Olympics in Paris and the new TSG podcast "Ein Dorf ist die Welt" (A village is the world) is introduced. All of that and much more can be found in the 108-page magazine.

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