Writer: Ryan Kalisz
Date:Monday October 10 2011
The Germans are planning an invasion!!!!! Don`t worry, it`s not the eve of WWIII (which we would most probably win anyway... again), it`s in the form of Bundesliga sides Hamburg and Wolfsburg who have shown a keen interest in our own 'Berlin Wall` Robert Huth.
Huth`s success at Stoke, especially with his incredible scoring record of 9 goals from last season, along with his consistency and stability at the back, has been attracting attention from his homeland and the two German top-flight sides will be battling it out to sign him in the January Transfer Window.
Despite his form last season, and winning the player of the year accolade, the arrivals of Mathew Upson and Jonathan Woodgate have put his pole position in the starting line-up in jeopardy as both are also quality defenders. To see these defenders in the same team, along with the ever improving Ryan Shawcross, is certainly an exciting confidence boost for fans who will no doubt be daydreaming of the future the club has in store. But for Huth, this will be a knock down to see rival challenging defenders join the squad and will make him feel that he`ll need to work harder for a place, even though his performances for us have been of the highest standard.
His preferred position in the centre of defence, usually partnered by Shawcross, has been lost to Woodgate who (touch wood) has been fit enough to play full games. Therefore he has been thrown back on the right where his pace doesn`t quite match small and nippy opposition wingers, so Andy Wilkinson and even Ryan Shotton have been favoured over the 27-year-old.
Both Hamburg and Wolfsburg will be looking to take advantage of that, offering guaranteed football in his home country so Huth can cement a case to be called up for Joachim Low`s Germany side ahead of Euro 2012.
They have both identified Huth as an attractive addition to their defences, which are both in a dire state at the moment as they concede goals at an alarming rate. Wolfsburg boss Felix Magath has watched his side fall short of high expectations at the Volkswagen Arena, conceding 15 goals in just eight league games, and with that, he is the most likely to become Huth`s new manager if he decides upon a move.
Robert will be tempted to move back home, just like any native would, but he has plenty of time to decided whether remaining at Stoke to fight for a place (or even hope that Woodgate gets injured) is the best option for him in the peak of his career.
It would be a shame if he was to go because he still has the years ahead of him, whereas Upson and Woodgate, being 32 and 31-years-old respectively, are possibly at their last stop before the nursing home. But a player will want to do what`s best for him at the end of the day, so if a move back to German is what he wants, then Pulis won`t stop him. Perhaps the humongous support of the fans can add to the case for him to stay at the Brit.
Date:Monday October 10 2011
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