powered by uhlsport
At 10 am on Saturday 13th July 2019, 62 keepers from all parts of Germany kicked off their first games of this years Keeperbattle in Cologne, at the Geißbockheim training ground of 1. FC Köln.
Last year, Hattingen glowed in AERO Red. This year, Cologne showed itself in blue and fluo yellow – or better said: in a RADAR CONTROL outfit. Why? Because this station of the Keeperbattle Eurotour 2019 was powered by uhlsport. At the uhlsport test stand, there were not only numerous gloves to see, but also a huge load of expert knowledge on topics such as grip, cuts and care of the models. Quite a few had goosebumps during the demonstration of the maximum adhesion of the foam and stood in amazement around the uhlsport team. In the direct duel, the keepers then gave their best on the courts, showing precise finishes, lightning-fast reactions and artistic parades.
Meti and Malcolm, both of whom have been keepers since young and also brand ambassadors for uhlsport, were among the participants. We thought it best for the two keepers to report back from the event themselves.
This is Meti
Meti has been part of the uhlsquad since March 2018. He is a German amateur goalkeeper and especially known for his YouTube channel PMTV. Here, he and his buddy Patrick regularly present videos from their everyday football life to over 280,000 subscribers. In July 2019, the two even founded their own club. On Instagram Meti is also known as an absolute “goalkeeper freak” and an icon of amateur football.
This is Malcolm
Malcolm plays for FV Dudenhofen. In 2018, uhlsport went on a search for a young keeper out of their own community under the motto #uhlbenext. In the final he won against the other keepers with his athletic performance and the necessary expertise. The jury around Hoffenheim Keeper Oli Baumann chose him as the new uhlsport brand ambassador. Since then Malcolm has been part of the uhlsquad.
On July 13th the second Keeperbattle as uhlsport brand ambassador was waiting for me, this time at Geißbockheim in Cologne. With last year’s experience, I knew what to expect – a good shot sometimes counts more than just the goalkeeper performance. So the goal was to play consistently well in the group phase and thus be able to enter the knockout phase with a swollen chest.
But in the first game, I went straight into overtime. That’s not how I had imagined it! Nevertheless, it was enormously important to win this game. In the second attempt, things went much better, I played confidently and was able to regain my self-confidence for the last group match. But my last opponent in the group turned out to be an absolute breaker, who already had a few keeper battles behind him and was already in the final round. After leading 2:0, I lost 2:5. Nevertheless, I reached the sixteenth final.
Here, my opponent’s first shot landed directly in the goal again – definitely not an ideal start. Nevertheless, I managed to equal the score quickly. Then it went back and forth, a tight game in which I did not take the lead, but could always stay within striking distance. At 4:5, however, I was under pressure – and scored. A classic shootout developed, which you can also watch in Meti’s video. In the end it was 8:9 and I had to leave the tournament.
Keeperbattle vs. game
Compared to the normal game there are many differences in the Keeperbattle. The game time of five minutes (+ overtime) is very long and means a lot of action. In a game you usually have less action and longer rest periods in which you have to keep your concentration high and stay awake to run long balls or something like that. Shooting as such is not necessarily my strength (and probably not that of most keepers). Only training helps here.
When I failed, I was always annoyed at the beginning and wasn’t prepared for the next shot, speculated or just stood wrong, which is definitely a disadvantage in a direct duel. So the key to the Keeperbattle is to stay calm even after failures and to take the next shot just as calmly – similar to a mistake in the game. Difference here: if you fail in a game, you still have time to correct the mistake. Nevertheless, you must never work through the problem in the game, but always talk to the goalkeeper coach afterwards. To fall into self-pity and frustration doesn’t help at all.
The tournament was once again a top event with high quality keepers, it had a good programme and a huge fun factor. With the motivation of 12 pairs of gloves to win this is no wonder. With such an amount of gloves, an amateur keeper can easily survive for some time. It has also been confirmed again that the league membership at the Keeperbattle does not say much. It’s all about shooting and holding. Here you don’t need tactical understanding, a good game structure or a minimum size.