Ottmar Hitzfeld (64) praises Valon Behrami: “Never before have I had such a strong defensive player”.

By: Albina Makolli    August 21, 2013

Hitzfeld (world trainer of 1997 and 2001) was very excited about Napoli’s victory against the fivefold world cup winner Brazil [1:0]. He could not stop praising the Kosovo-born player, Valon Behrami (28): “Valon is a world-class player. I can’t imagine our team without him. He wins an incredible number of duels, is very secure with the ball and very fast. He managed to play with very few fouls, which is an indication for his high class playing level.”

Napoli-star Behrami might even be the best defensive midfielder that Hitzfeld encountered throughout his impressive career: “I used to have Jeremies and Freund, but that used to be a different kind of football back then. In today’s modern and fast-paced football game against Brazil, I have to say that Valon is the best I’ve ever had”. During the last few years, Valon went through a positive development phase.

His character underwent a positive transformation as well. According to Hitzfeld, “Valon used to be an individualist, but now he’s a team player. He became a great leader with social competences. He leads other players” and especially the young ones whom he shares the same heritage with, such as Shaqiri and Xhaka. To Behrami, this game was one of his best games.

The next match of Napoli is going to be against Bologna on August 25.

The original article was posted at the Blick webpage. Click here to read the original article.

Albina Makolli

Albina Makolli is a blog contributor. She fled Kosovo when she was four; she grew up in Germany. Albina received her under graduate degree in European studies, and then continued with a graduate program in Public Policy and Human Development at the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance. Within the framework of her graduate program she specialized in Migration studies. Last summer (2012), Albina visited Kosovo for the purpose of conducting research for her Master thesis. The data that she gathered helped her to learn more about young Kosovars’ emigration plans and concerns about their country’s economic development. This summer she returned to Kosovo to work for the IOM and UNDP joint project 'Diaspora Engagement in Economic Development'. The purpose of the study is to facilitate and incentivise Diaspora investments in Kosovo.

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