Diego Benaglio (AS Monaco, Ligue 1) The former Wolfsburg goalkeeper was on the losing end of a 4-0 beatdown by PSG Saturday in the 2018 French Super Cup matchup. Benaglio, now 34. featured in over 250 league matches for the Wolves between 2008 and 2017, joining Monaco last summer. The Swiss international, who’s earned 61 caps, began his career with Grasshoppers and was part of a Swiss domestic championship squad before being signed by Stuttgart. Unable to earn senior squad work with the Swabians, Benaglio established himself in Portugal with CD National before signing in the Volkswagen City. He was both a Bundesliga champion, and, six years later, a Pokal winner, in his time with Wolfsburg. Former Eintracht Frankfurt keeper Kevin Trapp was on the bench for PSG, backing up recently acquired Juve legend Gianliugi Buffon.
Paweł Olkowski (Bolton, EFL) The backliner was a starter and a winner in his English debut as the Wanderers got a 1-2 road win at West Brom Albion Saturday. The 28 year-old Polish international had been with 1.FC Koln the since 2014, featuring in 64 league matches for the Billy Goats. Olkowski had a good English debut, not only helping the Trotters to three points but contributing with 13 clearances, 4 won aerials, 2 tackles, an interception and a blocked shot.
Zlatko Junuzović (FC Salzburg, Austrian Bundesliga) Junuzović was a starter for Red Bull’s Austrian club in their 0-2 away win at SV Mattersburg. The Austrian international, born in the former Yugoslavia, was a fixture at Werder Bremen from January, 2012 through last season, scoring 22 goals in nearly 200 matches in all competitions for the green-whites. The midfielder had an outstanding 2014/2015 campaign, with six goals and 15 assists. Brazilian André Ramalho, who played nearly 50 league matches for Bayer Leverkusen and Mainz the last few season, started for Salzburg and scored the winning goal in injury time while German Reinhold Yabo, 26, was also in the Salzburg starting XI. Yabo came up in the Koln system and played a handful of matches for the Billy Goats’ senior side, along with matches for Alemannia Aachen, Karlsruher SC and Arminia Bielefeld.
Francisco Rodriguez (Lobos BUAP, Liga MX) Better known as ‘Maza’ the veteran Mexican defender was on the losing end of a 1-0 defeat away at Necaza Saturday. The 6’3″ backliner, now 36. played 50 matches for Stuttgart between 2011 and 2013 after coming over from PSV Eindhoven. He left the Swabians for iconic Mexican side Club America, and also featured for another Mexico City side, Cruz Azul, before joining promoted Lobos last season. It may be a long campaign for Maza — after their Jornada 2 fixture, Lobos have lost both their matches and are -4 in goal differential.
Alphonso Davies (Vancouver Whitecaps, MLS) After a stellar performance last week against Minnesota United, recent Bayern Munich signing entered the Whitecaps match Saturday night in New York City and helped his side comeback to salvage a 2-2 road draw. The 17 year-old had one shot on target, was 11/11 in passing and had a tackle, interception and two clearances. The Canadian youngster will finish out the MLS with Vancouver before joining Bayern near the New Year. For NYFC, former Borussia Mönchengladbach man Alexander Ring had three shots and a key pass, passed at a 92% rate while leading the New Yorkers in tackles (five) and interceptions (three). Ring, a Finnish international, featured in 14 matches for the Foals while on loan from HJK Helsinki during the 2012/2013 season and later played in 76 matches for 1.FC Kaiserslautern, scoring eight league goals for the Red Devils.
Renato Augusto (Beijing Guoan, Chinese Super League) The former Leverkusen midfielder scored the equalizer in the 40th minute at home to Shandong Luneng Taishan to give his Beijing side a point Sunday. The 30 year-old Brazilian joined Die Werkself from Flamengo in 2008 and featured in 126 matches in all competitions for the German side until he moved to Corinthians during the 2012/2013 winter transfer window. Augusto is currently in his fourth season in Beijing, and has played well enough to make Brazil’s World Cup squad and score a goal in Russia against Belgium.
Landry Dimata (RSC Anderlecht, Belgian First Division) The 20 year-old native of the Congo DR had a brace Sunday in Anderlecht’s 5-0 takedown of KV Oostende, the club with which Dimata begin his professional career in 2016. The Belgian youth international joined Wolfsburg last summer on a reported 9 million euro fee, but was could not get untracked during VfL’s woeful 2017/2018 season, unable to find the net and providing only one assist in 897 minutes spread over 21 league matches. The striker remain on loan to Anderlecht through June, 2019 and hopefully Sunday’s brace indicates that the youngster has already begun to regain his goal-scoring form.
Florian Jungwirth (San Jose Earthquakes, MLS) The German was a 78th minute sub Saturday for the Earthquakes in their 1-3 road upset of first-place FC Dallas. The 29 year-old has featured in 21 matches for San Jose this season, scoring three goals and providing three assists after joining the MLS side last season. The native of Munich district municipality Gräfelfing began his career with the Lions of 1860 Munich, and subsequently played for Dynamo Dresden, VfL Bochum and SV Darmstadt 98 before heading to the U.S. He was awarded a Fritz Walter award in 2008 and was the Earthquakes Defensive Player of the Year for 2017. FC Dallas entered a player development partnership with Bayern Munich earlier this year. Three of their youth players spent a 16 day training session in Munich in 2018. FC Dallas 19 year-old defender Chris Richards signed with Bayern Munich’s U19 squad in July.
Latest posts by Gerry Wittmann (see all)
- The Most Wonderful Debut of Werder Bremen’s Josh Sargent - December 14, 2018
- Atlanta United’s Julian Gressel, Kevin Kratz Become First Germans to Lift MLS Cup - December 9, 2018
- Bundesliga ‘Where are they now’ 2018/2019 Edition V-5 - September 5, 2018