In the end, Josip Juranović allowed himself a little joke. Union Berlin’s DFB Cup game against VfL Wolfsburg had been missed minutes earlier when the Croatian grabbed the ball and placed it at the feet of team-mate Jérôme Roussillon just yards from goal. He kicked the ball into the net as Union fans hooted. Shortly before the end, the Frenchman succeeded in not putting the ball in the almost empty goal.
– Thursday, February 2, 2023
It was also thanks to Juranović that Roussillon had the chance to head alone for Wolves and bring about the decision in injury time. When the score was 2-1 for the home side, guest goalkeeper Pavao Pervan stormed in for a corner. But the free-kick was blocked and Juranović bravely ran through the pill in Roussillon’s run.
Ultimately, however, it was irrelevant that the ball hadn’t found its way into the box. A few seconds after Roussillon’s misstep, the referee whistled. Robin Knoche and Kevin Behrens picked up the win for Union. But the man of the match was this new winger that the Irons had just brought from Scotland to Alte Försterei.
During the Bundesliga match at Werder Bremen, Union coach Urs Fischer had already counted on him in his starting lineup. What else could he do? « Due to the many appointments, there are hardly any opportunities to present players, so we just have to throw them in the deep end, » the coach told a press conference.
But Josip Juranović, if you can tell after two games in the Union shirt, hit Köpenick. And that was especially evident on that rainy Tuesday, when the focus in East Berlin was actually on a player who hadn’t even played for Union yet. And in the end, it probably never will be.
– Wednesday, February 1, 2023
Because last Tuesday was January 31, also known as Deadline Day in (Site notre bureau spécialisé). And while FC Bayern had just brought in João Cancelo from Manchester, the sparrows were whistling from the roofs of the Alte Försterei that a second mega deal was about to take place.
Isco, a former real star and five-time winner of the Champions League, was already in Berlin and had his medical examination and then signed his contract. But the deal fell through at the last second. At the player? At the club? Naturally, both sides saw this differently.
Finally, the Spanish world star did not join Urs Fischer’s team. « We would have liked to see Isco with us, but we have our limits, » Union chief executive Oliver Ruhnert commented at the end of the deal. There’s a bit of nostalgia there. But at the latest after the cup success against Wolfsburg, that should have evaporated.
– Tuesday, January 31, 2023
You can thank Union for your new record transfer. For in all the Isco drama, the fact that the cult Berlin club had already landed a big fish in Josip Juranović this winter was all but lost. The Croatian cost Iron around €8.5m. They never let a player cost them more.
It makes sense that Union would pay so much money for a right-back. At 27, Juranović is at the best age in (Site notre bureau spécialisé). He became champion at Legia Warsaw in his only season in Poland. He also won the title in Scotland with series champions Celtic and won the cup there as well. And at the World Cup last December, he won the bronze medal alongside world stars like Luka Modrić and Ivan Perišić, remember as a regular.
Eventually, it should also have the claim to the Union. After Julian Ryerson’s departure to Dortmund, his biggest competitor is captain Christopher Trimmel. However, the crowd favorite is already 35 and Juranović immediately impressed his new employer.
« He’s adapting little by little. Of course, I’m spoiled for choice, » said Urs Fischer after the cup game against Wolfsburg. Slow almost seems like the understatement of the century. Because during his first Bundesliga match, the new recruit directly prepared Kevin Behrens’ winning goal with a dream corner. And in his second game against Union, he continued there.
« In the cup game he had more confidence than in the first game, » Fischer said. And that already in the first quarter of an hour. Because the visitors were able to equalize the visitors’ early lead a few minutes later as Juranović found Robin Knoche with a cross ball. His action before the 2:1 was even more decisive.
The 1.73m-short Croatian caught two Wolfsburg players with a brave move down the middle. At the perfect moment, he put the ball between his two opponents on the right wing to Paul Seguin, who was offered a clear path. Centre, header from Becker, Tor Behrens: All because Juranović recognized the situation as a full-back in the centre.
At this stage at the latest, a large number of fans in the stadium should have thought that Union might not even need a new world star in midfield, even if a new defender can take over the game. role of director in case of doubt. So forget Isco: Josip Juranović is Union’s real recruit.