FC Bayern – Miasanrot Advent Calendar, Door 31: Georgia Stanway
A guest article by Christoph Fetzer.
Georgia Stanway. Stanway. Staaanwaaaaayyyyyyy!!! There is hardly anything better for me than being close to the action with the live commentary when players shoot from a distance and the ball hits the ground. With Georgia Stanway, I’ve had this pleasure three times recently. In the European Championship quarter-finals, when the 23-year-old scored from long range to level the score at it 1-1 against Spain in extra time (England could have lost the game and we might now be talking about this tournament in a completely different way). And in Bayern’s Champions League group game against Benfica Lisbon, when Stanway struck twice to turn a 1-2 scoreline into a 3-2 win (Bayern could have lost the game and progression would probably still hang in the balance).
And the beautiful ones. Because let’s be honest: don’t we all love shots form range? Unfortunately, we see them less and less in the men’s game. Ever since Pep Guardiola was at Bayern, we’ve known that a long-range shot doesn’t have a particularly high chance of resulting in a goal. It’s better to play another sideways pass, maybe even a back pass, build up from the back once more and look for the better shooting position in the penalty area. This is true for the men. But for the women – and this is another reason why I like their football so much – it’s different. Smaller goalkeepers, less bounce. All of a sudden, the long shot becomes a credible threat again. Shoot, just shoot.
But she can do so much more. The way she organised the midfield with Keira Walsh at the European Championship and now with Sarah Zadrazil at Bayern, the way she provides the dynamic component in the six position, the way she runs, fights, tackles – that’s fun. We can look forward to the next game against VfL Wolfsburg – not only because the best teams in the league will meet, but also because we will get to see the Stanway vs Oberdorf duel again. Ding, ding, ding – second round. Lots of toughness, a bit of venom. Delightful.
As well as her grit on the pitch, Georgia Stanway has a laid back levity and cheerfulness off the pitch. She is an asset to FC Bayern and to the league. One of the best midfielders in the world in Germany, it’s always worth taking a close look. Because when Georgia Stanway is on the ball, something usually is bound to happen. Often in a flash, from one moment to the next. And when she rushes back towards the sixteen, having won the ball or taken it with an elegant turn, I think to myself: watch out now. And secretly: Shoot, Georgia. Just shoot.