Stefan Kiessling: “Chicharito and I were competition”


Stefan Kiessling is the second highest scorer in the history of the bayer leverkusen. A legend of ‘The Aspirins’, heir to the glories of Ulf Kirsten and Thomas Hörster. Area forward, classic ‘nine’, accurate header finisher, lethal at the first touch inside the area. And, according to him, a “competition” and, at the same time, an ally on the attack front for Javier Hernández.

“With ‘Chicharito’ it was a competition. We were strikers and we competed for the same position”, recalls Kiessling in an interview with AS. “I remember a match, the last one before Christmas (2015) against Gladbach, when we won 5-0. I had the opportunity to prepare two goals for him and I also scored two, it was a great game for us as a couple in attack”, added the former striker, who participated in the official announcement of the duels next May and July that Bayer Leverkusen will hold in Mexico with its two flagship campuses. In the first round, the man will face Toluca at the Nemesio Diez Stadium on May 17; two months later, the women’s team will face its counterpart at Club América. Both matches will be friendly. The reason: the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the pharmaceutical company, one of the most important in the world, on Mexican soil.

Kiessling, a World Cup player in South Africa 2010 with the German National Team, predicted a good performance by the ‘Mannschaft’ and the Mexican National Team in Qatar 2022: “First of all it is important to get through the group stage. My best consideration is that Germany is first in their group and that Mexico is second in theirs. I am sure that Mexico can overcome their group, even with Argentina there. We want to become world champions and with that purpose we are going there”.

The former striker, who made his professional debut with Nuremberg in 2002, believes that the matches that the German institution will hold in Mexico will bring both nations closer: “We are separated by 12 hours of flight by plane, it is a long distance, but this does not prevent us from wanting to be in greater contact with Mexico. Football unites people, this happens all over the world. I am very excited about what is to come, to see how many fans go to the stadiums. I am very excited about the response from the public.”

“It is impressive how much women’s soccer is growing in Mexico”

Anna Klink, current goalkeeper for Bayer 04 Leverkusen, praised the growth of Liga MX Femenil as a prelude to the commitment that her team will have against América Femenil; a league founded less than five years ago and that has already registered attendance records worldwide. “It is impressive how much women’s soccer is growing in Mexico. The numbers of viewers, the power that women are achieving is a very good thing. that excites us. It is truly impressive. I hope that with this partnership we can learn a lot from each other. May this enthusiasm continue and may women’s soccer continue on this upward curve”.

“It is an opportunity for the team and for Mexican soccer. For us too. We have a lot of contact with the English league, for example, which is one of the most important in the world, and I think it has helped us to grow on our part”, the goalkeeper paid in an interview with AS.