How we meet again… Just over a month ago, Julian Draxler was still a PSG player.
Today, it is as a member of Benfica Lisbon that he will find the Red and Blue, in the Champions League (this Wednesday at 9 p.m., at the Estadio da Luz).
A club where the 29-year-old German international landed in January 2017 for €36 million from Wolfsburg, through the front door, to leave through the service exit.
Itinerary of a golden-boy who has been lost over the years, dilettantism as a mantra, from great hope to "lofteur", loaned to the Lisbon club for the season with a contract until 2024 in Paris.
Paying loan (€2.5m?) which makes him the highest paid player in the Portuguese championship at €583,300, from Portuguese sources.
A salary assumed at 80% by Paris Saint-Germain,
which clearly pushed him out.
A new chapter has opened for me
,” he says via his
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But things weren't going so well at work and in that case you have to do something about it.
But it's not that simple
after all ,” he continues.
Especially when your partner is pregnant up to the eyes and you feel so good in your club and in Parisian life.
A little too much perhaps in his case… “
I finally left this comfort zone
”, loose the former Schalke 04, father of a little boy for only a handful of days, evoking “
a difficult but sensible decision
And above all the only one possible, knowing that Christophe Galtier counted even less on him than Mauricio Pochettino.
The deal was clear: with Layvin Kurzawa, Gana Gueye, Gini Wijnaldum and a few others, “Drax” found himself stuck, with little hope of returning to favor.
Too late for the World Cup?
He therefore chose to leave and respond positively to the sirens of Benfica, a club which is playing for the title in its championship and which is obviously competing in the Champions League.
All with a German coach at the helm, Roger Schmidt, who “
relaunched Mario Götze at PSV.
In his reflection, it may have weighed.
Now coach Hansi Flick is keeping a small eye on him , ”said
Patrick Guillou, a connoisseur of German football, who is however not convinced that Draxler, more seen in the national team since the rally in March, will succeed. to hitch the right wagon for the World Cup in Qatar (November 20-December 18).
Time is too short and the train has left.
It will be very complicated
“, guesses the ex-Stéphanois.
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One thing is certain: Draxler left Paris leaving behind him a taste of unfinished business.
Of course, there are the mitigating circumstances of recurring injuries.
The native of Gladbeck was also not varnished with the joint arrivals of Neymar and Kylian Mbappé six months after his transfer to Paris, blocking his access to the starting 11 on the front of the attack.
Thomas Tuchel tried it well in the middle.
It wasn't silly considering the boy's impressive technical background.
He makes the game smoother, he has phenomenal reading skills and has quite consistent feet.
We saw on the side of Schalke or Wolfsburg its double acceleration
”, underlines Guillou, also appreciating “
his deviations, his game in one touch, he is able to find a player in the axis even if there is density in front of him
Except Draxler isn't the type to get hurt.
Not enough for midfield games.
Not quite enough actually.
Sometimes (Tuchel) goes crazy because I don't like fighting on the pitch in one-on-one situations or direct duels
", admitted the German international (58 caps, 7 goals) there a few years old.
He was the greatest talent of his generation, he got a bit lost on the way.
Patrick Guillou, beIN SPORTS consultant
It's not just "Herr Tuchel" who tore his hair out.
Draxler, a walking mess?
It always depends on where you point the cursor of the requirement, but if you talk about his raw qualities and what he did with them, I think he got a little lost along the way... He was ahead of all passing times, he was perhaps the best player or at least the greatest talent of his generation.
Admittedly, his record is quite substantial, he is world champion (in 2014), he won titles in Germany and at PSG, he was a player for the Germany team.
His career is still busy.
But if he had had the will to work and exploit his pure talent more, he might have been able to make a big career... I'm still a little unsatisfied
», Asserts Patrick Guillou, more or less summing up the general feeling.
In the end, Draxler is nearly 198 matches at PSG, 26 goals and 41 assists.
Not ridiculous, especially when you regularly come off the bench.
Can do better, always.
His life in Paris suited him extremely well.
He had met the mother of his child in Paris, he has been a dad for a few days.
It may also have invited him to get out of his comfort zone and try this challenge at Benfica, to question himself at 29
, ”notes Guillou, who comments on the C1 on
Read alsoDraxler opens his counter with Benfica with a (very) nice goal
In the meantime, Julian Draxler has arrived… injured at Benfica.
Since he has been operational, he has been slowly gaining playing time in recent weeks, with four appearances, no tenure, for a total of 90 minutes and one goal, a mine since entering the area against Maritimo (5-0 ), September 18.
His first goal since September 25, 2021 with PSG, against Montpellier (2-0).
He scored his goal against the Maritimo, he has some playing time but it's not yet extraordinary, he's not a rhythm player but he is capable, on a sudden brilliance, with talent, of make a difference
,” warns Patrick Guillou.
Indeed, "Drax" would probably not hesitate to play a nasty trick on his ex-partners by scoring, like so many