The scream was amazing, incomparable to any other footballer, when the announcer read the name of Robert Lewandowski several minutes before the match. – I’m always looking forward to the next show here. Playing at home makes me feel proud. This is our home. The matches at the National Stadium are special for me -. The captain of the Polish national team came to the September training camp in a great mood – I feel like a child who was given new toys. And the happier the player is, the more he can give to the team – added the FC Barcelona striker.
Lewandowski came to Poland happy. It could be seen. Especially on Monday, when the captain of the national team traditionally appeared at the press conference opening the training camp. Before the meeting with journalists, staff spokesman Jakub Kwiatkowski asked to ask only about matters related to the staff. But Lewandowski. And that’s where it’s going great: eight games, 11 goals, two assists – a goal every 58 minutes on average.
Lewandowski in Barcelona has been shining since the beginning of the season. But Lewandowski in the club and Lewandowski in the squad are two completely different players. Unfortunately. We have been learning this painfully for years. Today, this contrast seems even greater, because we can safely risk the thesis that Lewandowski’s way of playing was much closer to the team from the pragmatic and tactically arranged Bayern than from the crazy and sometimes chaotic Barcelona, which now has a weaker squad than Bayern, but La Liga – as Lewandowski himself mentioned recently – it is much less a physical league than the Bundesliga. And this is what Lewandowski likes in the club, but he lacks it in the squad.
– Here the teams want to play football – Lewandowski told recently about his first impressions from the Spanish fields, which are completely different from the impressions and conditions that await him in the squad. And on Thursday he was painfully aware of it again.
Lewandowski grabbed his head
It was the 14th minute. All the players from the field were walking towards the Dutch goal, and Lewandowski was turned towards them. As if to ask what just happened. And it happened that a moment earlier the Dutch played a great team action and easily coped with the Polish defense. Especially with Nicola Zalewski on the left pendulum and central midfielder Karol Linetti, who ran down and tried to help in the defense.
Lewandowski saw the Dutch goal action perfectly, although he did not participate in it. For the first quarter of an hour he did not return to defense at all, and even rarely to help. Even when the rivals played the ball in our half – and let’s add that they did it quite often and easily – Lewandowski stood close to their penalty area and waited for the ball. By the way, he attracted the attention of at least two defenders – most often Virgil van Dijk and Nathan Ake.
But it was only at the beginning, because the longer the first half lasted, the more active Lewandowski was in the second line. And also irritated. And it became more and more visible with each passing minute. It started on the 31st when he grabbed his head after Piotr Zieliñski kicked the ball towards the Dutch goalkeeper instead of him.
The Napoli midfielder, who, like Lewandowski, shines at the club, did not get along with the captain. But there were more such disagreements on Thursday. The climax came right before the break – in extra time – when Lewandowski was running with the ball in the middle of the field, he suddenly looked to the right, but none of our players were there. And he kicked the ball to the side, as if casually, to which Przemysław Frankowski, playing on the right pendulum, reached after a while.
On Thursday, Lewandowski not only waved his hands and had a grudge, because he also prompted his teammates. And he did it often – he gesticulated, approached, talked, showed with his hand where they should play the ball at a given moment, or even discussed with defenders and said how they should position themselves for a corner kick. These were not gestures that resulted only from grievances, but also from responsibility for the band, which Lewandowski sometimes tried to stimulate and strengthen on Thursday. Like in the 52nd minute, when it should have been 1-1, but Arkadiusz Milik, who changed Linetti during the break, kicked the ball over the crossbar from a few meters.
Lewandowski applauded Milik then, but later he did not have many opportunities to praise his teammates. Anyway, he didn’t have anything for himself, because this time he didn’t make a difference. From the 60th minute, Poland was losing to the Netherlands 0: 2, because apart from being unable to attack, it was also unable to defend itself. And she saw how much divides her from the best in the world, how Michniewicz treats the Dutch national team. “We will play with them at the World Cup,” he says.
Robert Lewandowski in the match against the Netherlands:
- minutes of play: 90
- goals: 0
- shots: 0
- shots on target: 0
- ball contacts: 36
- customs passes: 24/27
- duels (wins): 8 (2)
- fouls: 0
- fouled: 1