Toni Kroos (Part 1)

12 Mar 2024

Toni Kroos (Part 1)

Toni Kroos, born on 4 January 1990, is a distinguished German professional footballer renowned for his role as a midfielder for La Liga club Real Madrid and the Germany national team. Widely regarded as one of the greatest midfielders in the history of the sport, Kroos is celebrated for his exceptional vision, passing precision, creativity, adept crossing, and set-piece expertise. Primarily stationed as a central midfielder, he has also showcased his skills as a deep-lying playmaker throughout his career.

Kroos initiated his senior club career with Bayern Munich, making his debut at the age of 17 in 2007. Following a brief stint where he was sparingly used, he opted for an 18-month loan spell at Bayer Leverkusen, emerging as a key contributor and returning to Bayern Munich with an elevated profile in 2010. With Bayern, Kroos achieved remarkable success, winning two consecutive league titles, a UEFA Champions League title, two DFB-Pokal titles, and earning three selections to the league team of the season. In 2014, he made a significant move to Real Madrid in a transfer worth 25 million.

During his tenure at Real Madrid, Kroos secured an impressive tally of twenty trophies, including three La Liga titles and four UEFA Champions League titles, achieving a historic three-peat from 2016 to 2018. He was consistently recognized for his outstanding contributions, being selected three times in the FIFPro World11 and UEFA Team of the Year, and twice in the league's team of the season. Kroos was honored with the IFFHS World's Best Playmaker award in 2014 and named the German Footballer of the Year in 2018.

Kroos's accolades extend to his international career, where he won the Golden Player at the 2006 UEFA European Under-17 Championship, finishing as the top goalscorer, and claimed the Golden Ball at the 2007 FIFA U-17 World Cup. Making his senior debut for Germany in 2010 at the age of 20, he played a crucial role in five major tournaments. Kroos played a pivotal part in Germany's victory in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, leading the assist charts and earning recognition in the All-Star Team, Dream Team, and as the German Player of the Year. He was also selected to the Team of the Tournament at UEFA Euro 2016. Following Germany's elimination from UEFA Euro 2020 in 2021, Kroos announced his international retirement amid criticism of his performance. However, in 2024, he made a comeback to the national team, marking a return to the pitch for his country.

Toni Kroos began his football journey with local club Greifswalder SC before transferring to the youth team of Hansa Rostock. In 2006, he joined Bayern Munich's youth setup, a move that required him to miss up to 40 days of school during the year due to training.
At the age of 17, in the 2007–08 season, Kroos was promoted to Bayern Munich's senior team. He made a remarkable Bundesliga debut on 26 September 2007 in a 5–0 victory over Energie Cottbus. Coming on as a substitute, Kroos assisted Miroslav Klose twice within 18 minutes of his appearance, showcasing his talent. At the time, Kroos became the youngest player ever to represent Bayern in a professional match, at 17 years and 265 days old, a record later broken by David Alaba in 2010.

On 25 October, Kroos made a significant impact on his UEFA Cup debut, coming on as a substitute in the 81st minute against Red Star Belgrade. He provided an assist for Miroslav Klose and scored the winning goal in stoppage time, securing a valuable victory for Bayern. Kroos made his first start in a 3–1 defeat away at VfB Stuttgart.In his debut season, Kroos accumulated 20 appearances for Bayern, including six starts, and scored three goals in 12 appearances for Bayern Munich II in the Regionalliga Süd.Despite starting in Bayern's opening 2008–09 Bundesliga match against Hamburger SV, Kroos had fewer appearances during the first half of the season. On 5 November 2008, he made his UEFA Champions League debut as a substitute in the 79th minute against Fiorentina during matchday four of the group stage.

On 31 January 2009, Bayern Munich permitted Toni Kroos to embark on an 18-month loan to Bayer Leverkusen, a strategic move aimed at providing him with valuable first-team experience. Kroos made his debut for Leverkusen on 28 February as a substitute in a 1–0 defeat against Hannover 96. His first Bundesliga start for Leverkusen occurred on 12 April, where he contributed an assist in a 1–1 draw with Werder Bremen. The young midfielder notched his maiden Bundesliga goal on 18 April 2009, despite Leverkusen suffering a 2–1 loss to VfL Wolfsburg.

Kroos played a crucial role as a late substitute in the 2009 DFB-Pokal Final on 30 May against Werder Bremen, although Leverkusen fell short, losing 1–0 to a Mesut Özil goal.
Throughout the 2008–09 season, Kroos accumulated 13 appearances for Leverkusen in all competitions, finding the back of the net once.The subsequent 2009–10 season witnessed Kroos solidify his place as a regular in the Leverkusen lineup, featuring in nearly every Bundesliga match for Bayer. Between matchdays 16 and 20, Kroos showcased his brilliance by scoring five goals and providing four assists in five Bundesliga matches. This impressive run earned him consecutive "player of the month" awards from kicker for December 2009 and January 2010.By the end of the season, Kroos had amassed nine goals and 12 assists from 33 matches, affirming his growing reputation as a dynamic and impactful midfielder.


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  11. ^ "Toni Kroos joins Real Madrid from Bayern Munich for £20m" 17 July 2014. Retrieved 16 July 2017.
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  13. a b "Kroos becomes Club World Cup's most decorated player"Real Madrid CF. 22 December 2018. Retrieved 10 January 2019.
  14. a b c "Hoeness taunts Kroos: He's got no place in today's football"MARCA. 11 July 2021. Retrieved 14 February 2024.
  15. a b c "'I don't agree with the way he plays' - Matthaus criticises Kroos as Germany Euro 2020 fallout rumbles on | Sporting News Canada".

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