No Nelson Valdez
What has been said and cursed about Robert Lewandowski on the Südtribüne and on the other terraces of the Westfalenstadion this season? "He is never worth 5 millions."; "We have a new Nelson Valdez."; "Opportunity killer". During the last year, there have been several names for the young Pole who went to Dortmund after long transfer negotiations before the championship season. Of course, it has to be pointed out that Lewandowski played unlucky especially in the cup competitions. When Dortmund lost to Offenbach in the German Cup, Lewandowski –besides Barrios- was one of the players who did not succeed from the penalty point, being untypical for a forward. In addition, Lewandowski had the opportunity to widen the door to the knockout phase of the Europa League in Paris when he stormed to the goal all alone, but failed. This lead to his critics being even more critical about him, they said that "Lewy" had costed Borussia a lot of millions. However, the first season of Robert Lewandowski in a BVB-jersey was no failure, but the opposite: I would regard it as a success.
Who can remember the first half of the first season of someone called Lucas B. who came as the world's best scorer and was regarded as world's not scorer after some time. He waited long for his first goal in the Bundesliga, but followed up with another 18 in the same season. Critics also came up in his case and talked about the gap between German and Chilean League being too big to overcome. This was said for Lewandowski, too who had to manage the change from Poland to Germany. There is no need pointing out that a player coming to a new team in a new league where a different kind of football is played needs some time to feel comfortable. This is true for all positions on the pitch, defenders also need to get used to the faster style of play in Germany. However, if forwards need this time to get used to everything, it is something which is criticized very often. This is due to the fact that forwards are always judged by their goals.
In the case of Lewy, however, it was left aside that he is not the typical scoring forward, no Lucas B. who is without any nerves in front of the goal and is judged only based on the goals. Robert is more like a playmaker, able to play behind the forwards and having his strength on that position. This becomes obvious when you compare the matches of Lewandowski as a Barrios-replacement to the ones with Robert on the number 10 position. Lewandowski is more like an offensive allrounder who can also be used on the right side of the pitch – and that is what makes him special. Robert had some difficulties finding his place in the starting line-up (which was also due to the fact that the first eleven was so good last year), but he was there when he was needed. In the case of a Barrios' injury, supporters could be happy to have someone like Robert Lewandowskion the bench. A guy many other clubs in Germany would be very proud to have in the starting line-up. When Mario Götze or Kuba missed a match, Lewy was ready to take the place instead. And he did that with success. Four goals coming from the bench are a good prove for this fact.
And even though it is deserved that you only think about a certain Japanese with the number 23 on his back when talking about the derby victory, we do not forget who scored the third goal for Borussia that day and at the same time celebrated his first goal for his new club on day 3. It took Lewandowski 14 days to make it to the starting line-up. Until then, he was brought in 14 times and played for a sum of 236 minutes. This is not much, however, number 7 used his time to score four times which means an average 59 minutes per goal. Generally, eight goals and three assists are no bad facts for a player in his first season. Therefore, I will never understand criticism concerning Lewandowski. When Lewandowski scored against Cologne, he was responsible for the team taking three important points. The people cursing Lewandowski are in fact those people who never gave him a chance, but waited for his failure. At least, the critics became more or less silent during the euphoria of the last months which means Lewandowski had passed the time of criticism. Anyway, it would be blasphemic to criticize a Deutscher Meister 2011. And because he had no easy time during the first half of the season, I would like to thank Robert Lewandowski since he also is a hero in blackyellow. I would like to thank him for his eight goals, his three assists, his flexibility and his strong mind which helped him ignoring the critics and instead made him to fight on.