EuroScout

Euroscout: David Alaba

EuroScout

Ahead of Manchester City's must-win Champions League clash with Bayern Munich on Wednesday we take a look at the German side's promising midfielder who is set to play at the Etihad Stadium.

Player: David Alaba
Date of birth: June 24, 1992 (age 19)
Place of birth: Vienna, Austria
Nationality: Austrian
Height: 1.80m (5ft 10in)
Position: Midfielder
Current club: Bayern Munich
Former clubs: Austria Vienna (youth), Hoffenheim (loan)
Number: 27

Background: With Bayern confirming the absence of both Arjen Robben and Toni Kroos from the party travelling to the Etihad Stadium due to the pair suffering from flu, you would think the Bundesliga giants will be left with a gaping hole in midfield.

However, the absence of that duo opens up an opportunity for Alaba to further prove his first-team credentials at the club. 

It is perhaps no surprise to hear of another exciting young attacking player to come through the youth ranks at Bayern Munich. However, unlike such team-mates Kroos and Thomas Mueller, Alaba will not be following them into the German national team as he has already made more than a dozen senior appearances for Austria.

The son of a Nigerian father and a Filipino mother, Alaba was tempted to make the move north from his native Vienna in 2008. After spending his final year of youth football in Germany, he made an instant impact in Bayern's second team.

The versatile left-footer was just 23 appearances into his career at the Gruenwalder Stadion when he was promoted to the senior squad for the second half of the 2009/10 season. Alaba came off the bench for his league debut against Cologne in March of that year before starting the next three fixtures, including the second leg of Bayern's Champions League last 16 tie at Fiorentina, which they won en route to the final.

He had already made his full debut the previous month in the German Cup, coming off the bench on the hour mark and just a minute later setting up Franck Ribery to make it 3-2 against second-division outfit Greuther Fuerth. Bayern went on to win the tie 6-2 and eventually claimed the trophy.

Being a left-sided attacker, Alaba has understandably struggled to displace Ribery from his position on that flank. As such, previous Bayern boss Louis van Gaal had mainly played him at left-back during the handful of appearances he was given last season.

However, a January loan move to Hoffenheim gave him his first run of games in Germany's top division. Alaba played 17 times for manager Marco Pezzaiuoli and scored his first senior goal - a stoppage-time equaliser in a 2-2 draw against St Pauli.

His form in helping Hoffenheim finish last season in 11th persuaded newly-installed Bayern boss Jupp Heynckes to make the kid nicknamed 'Alabisi' a more prominent figure this season. So far this term he has made 13 league appearances (four starts) and three in Europe.

He opened his account for Bayern in October with a goal at Hannover, and last weekend put in a great performance as Bayern ran out 4-1 winners at Werder Bremen.

Alaba set up Ribery once again for the opening goal in that match, before being substituted for Robben after an hour.

With Bayern already through to the knockout phase a Group A winners, and with several first-team players unlikely to feature, Alaba has the chance to show why he is being so highly-rated on the big stage.

 

 

Analysis from Bayern Munich 4-1 Werder Bremen on December 3 2011 at the Allianz Arena

9' - Ribery's cross leads to a melee in the area and the ball almost falls for Alaba, but he is penalised for a foul on Philipp Bargfrede.

22' - Alaba escapes the clutches of Bargfrede and tees up Ribery with a great pass that the Frenchman finishes with aplomb to open the scoring.

32' - Goalkeeper Sebastian Mielitz fails to claim Alaba's corner which cuases panic in the box, but Thomas Mueeler is not able to capitalise.

38' - A lovely, flowing passing move involves Alaba, Ribery, Mueller and Mario Gomez, but the youngster's heavy touch concedes a goal kick.

45' - Teed up for a shot from range by Ribery, but the effort is charged down by a defender.

60' - Substituted for Arjen Robben. Leaves the pitch to warm an approving ovation from the Allianz Arena crowd.

 

Player ratings

Passing: 8/10
Vision: 6/10
Pace: 7/10
Technique: 8/10
Work ethic: 7/10
Approximate value: £10m

 

 

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