Tables have turned on Thomas Muller as the Bayern Munich ace has become the butt of a Nicolas Tagliafico joke.
Known for his madcap antics, Thomas Muller is usually the class clown of the group he’s around. The 2014 World Cup winner could often be spotted pulling pranks on teammates or cracking puns in interviews.
That wasn’t the case this time around though, when the Olympique Lyon defender chose to stand in Muller’s shoes, taking a polite jab at the Bayern #10.
A Twitter account by the name of “Fernando Palomo ESPN” shared a gif that had a kid kicking another kid on the head. The caption asked fans to list a footballer the clip reminded them of.
World Cup winner Tagliafico replied to the clip by tagging Thomas Muller, captioned, “ring any bells, @esmullert_? Only joking, no hard feelings! The only souvenir is a top picture.”
Fans loved the response from Nicolas as they were quick to catch the incident the Argentine was referring to. The backstory behind Nico’s tweet can be delineated back to December 2018.
In Bayern Munchen’s sixth and final group stage game in the UEFA Champions League, the Bavarians traveled to Johan Cruijff Arena to face Eredivisie giants Ajax.
After previously drawing their encounter 1-1 at Allianz Arena, both sides were at the exact scoreline yet again around the 75th minute, with Ajax being a man down. It was then when Thomas Muller stuck his studs to the back of Nico Tagliafico’s head while the German was trying to control an aerial ball. The impact nearly decapitated the Argentine.
The knock, being a brutal one, required immediate on-field medical attention. Muller right away received his marching orders from the referee. Tagliafico went on to score a last-gasp equalizer for Ajax, with the game ending 3-3.
Post-match, Bayern’s then-manager Nico Kovac stood in favor of Muller’s sending-off. The forward received a two-match ban for violent conduct on the pitch. Muller later apologized to Tagliafico via Instagram.
Notably, this was also the season where Ajax surprised everyone and reached the semi-finals of UCL, knocking out Real Madrid and Juventus in the process. They haven’t managed to make a run this deep in the tournament ever since.
In the absence of Thomas Muller, Bayern suffered an early exit from UCL this season, being knocked out at the hands of eventual winners Liverpool in the Round of 16. They went on to win the whole thing the next season, beating PSG in the final.
Tagliafico has had a stellar 2022/23 season so far. The former Ajax man, who was linked with a Barcelona move last winter, was a key player in Argentina’s World Cup triumph in Qatar. He’s also been among the highest-rated players in the otherwise dull Lyon side so far.
Muller, on the other hand, has continued to age like a fine wine. The Raumdeuter has skippered his side to the top of the Bundesliga table in the absence of Manuel Neuer. All eyes are on the Bayern Munich ace ahead of the Bavarians’ much-awaited UCL Quarter Final clash against Manchester City.
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