Maximilian Arnold interview: Beats to make the body rock for Wolfsburg’s boy wonder

Photo: citypress24
Photo: citypress24

 

In Maximilian Arnold, VfL Wolfsburg currently have one of Europe’s most coveted youngsters, and although the teenage attacking midfielder does his talking on the pitch there are some sounds in particular that awaken the rhythm within him.

He is a player who most observers of the European game will be familiar with. The 19-year-old is undoubtedly among German football’s most prized assets and he has helped to light the fuse on numerous occasions for Wolfsburg as they chase continental qualification this season.

A left-footed talent, the Riesa-born German Under-21 international is reportedly the subject of interest from Arsenal and Juventus, although he has stated his continued commitment to his current club. Maximilian has six goals from 15 games in 2013/14 and Wolfsburg allowed him to give a little bit of a glimpse into his and the team’s music on here.

Alongside the likes of recent signing from Chelsea, Kevin De Bruyne, Maximilian is a pivotal cog in the attacking wheel for Die Wölfe. When it comes to getting the players focused and ready to fire when the whistle blows, it is a German-born Swiss international defender who gets to call the shots.

“Timm Klose often plays the music in our changing room,” Maximilian revealed. “He plays house, techno and r&b.”

25-year-old Klose joined Wolfsburg from FC Nürnberg last summer and he was in the line-up as Dieter Hecking’s team moved up to 5th in the Bundesliga last weekend. A 2-1 win away to Hertha Berlin was sealed as Robin Knoche cancelled out Per Skjelbred’s opener before Daniel Caligiuri, a substitute for Ivan Perisic, stole all three points.

The Wolves have 36 points from 21 league games and they face 2nd-placed Bayer Leverkusen at home on Saturday. Maximilian will be one of the main forwards on show at Volkswagen Arena and he is typically found operating from the right in a three-pronged attacking midfield supporting Dutch striker Bas Dost.

Maximilian was only 12 years old when he left home to join up with the Dynamo Dresden academy and this meant leaving school and much of what he was used to behind. It was not so long before then that he began listening to a compilation of trance tracks that Timm Klose would surely approve of.

“When I was 11 years old I bought my first CD – ‘Dream Dance Alliance’.”

A title winner for Wolfsburg’s Under-19s in 2009 and 2011, Maximilian was given his senior debut in the 2011/12 season by a man who has just taken over as Fulham boss – Felix Magath. He was just 17 at the time and although he would return to the Under-19s to continue his progress he would not have to wait too much longer for another opportunity in the first team.

 

Photo: Nina Stiller Photography
Photo: Nina Stiller Photography

 

Former Hannover 96 midfielder Dieter Hecking took charge of Die Wölfe in December 2012 and he handed Maximilian his chance in March 2013. He duly took it and scored three goals in six Bundesliga matches towards the end of the season.

Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp talks of him as ‘one of the greatest talents’ but Maximilian is not one to court attention off the pitch. He is always one of the last to depart the training field and although he makes plenty of noise with his performances on match days he much prefers relaxed evenings with his girlfriend to wild partying.

Two LA artists are at the top of the list for Maximilian and are always a good bet to be found on his playlists.

“My favourite types of music are urban and house music and so I like Kid Ink and Tyga a lot.”

Wolfsburg are firmly in the hunt for a high finish in the league and they are also into the last four of the DFB Pokal. Two penalties from Swiss defender Ricardo Rodriguez, who later saw red, and a Bas Dost goal saw off Hoffenheim by a 3-2 scoreline in the quarter-final.

The Wolves have come back from a goal down on four occasions this season and although initiation songs are part and parcel of many teams’ tradition you are unlikely to see a new Wolfsburg signing having to belt out a classic, according to Maximilian.

“I can’t remember that I have had to sing in front of my teammates and nobody has ever given singing performances.”

It will be late-May by the time Maximilian turns 20 but he has already represented Germany from Under-16s all the way through to Under-21 level. He was Wolfsburg’s youngest ever scorer when he netted against Hoffenheim last April and he has nine goals in 23 Bundesliga career games up to now.

There is so much anticipation surrounding this boy and like most players growing up he had his favourites to look up to. He speaks of the technique and intelligence he admired in a certain iconic French midfielder, as well as naming the Brazilian player he has learned a great deal from working with. In the case of the latter, Maximilian played alongside the ex-Werder Bremen star before he left Wolfsburg for Atletico Madrid last month.

“My most favourite player was Zinedine Zidane. I enjoyed playing with Diego.
“We were a good team together and he is a very great footballer. It was a lot of fun to play with him.”

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