Mario Gotze is the creative force behind Germany’s robust midfield. Although he’s just 22, Gotze has already attracted huge controversy during his short soccer playing career. Outside of his soccer life, Gotze’s girlfriend is the stunning model Ann Kathrin Brommel. German soccer legend Matthias Sammer said that Gotze is “one of the best talents that [Germany’s] ever had.”
Here’s what you need to know about one of Germany’s young stars:
1. He Made One of the Most Controversial Transfers in History
During the summer of 2013, just days before his Dortmund team were due to play Bayern Munich in the Champions League semi finals against Real Madrid, Gotze announced he was leaving Dortmund for their hated rival, Bayern Munich. The two teams had agreed a $60 million fee for the player. The amount had to be accepted by Dortmund as it met release clause fee. His coach, Jurgen Klopp, told the media how disappointed he was with Gotze, mainly due to the timing of the transfer. Though Klopp also admitted he couldn’t convince Gotze to stay because Bayern’s new coach, Pep Guardiola, wanted him so badly. In his first season with Bayern, Gotze helped the team easily win the German championship, scoring ten goals in 27 games.
2. He Was a Dortmund Legend
Gotze first joined Dortmund at the tender age of eight, when he turned 17, he made his debut for the first team. For the next season, Gotze was officially promoted to the first team. By the 2010/11 season, he was a key part of the team with his creative and passing developing at a prodigious level. That season Dortmund won the German championship for the first time in 15 years. In his final season with Dortmund, the team were beaten to the championship by Munich, but Gotze scored 16 goals from midfield and his partnership with Marco Reus was already being compared to Barcelona’s pairing of Xavi and Iniesta.
3. Gotze’s Been in the German Team Since He Was 18
At just 18, Gotze made the German national team, after playing for his nation’s various youth teams. His first game was a friendly against Sweden in November 2010. That night he created history, as, along with Andre Schurrle, they became the first players who were born in reunified Germany to play for the national team. At Euro 2012, he didn’t play much of a part, coming as a substitute in the blowout victory over Greece in the quarterfinal. So far in his career, Gotze has played 32 games and scored 10 goals.
4. His Brother Is in Dortmund’s Youth Team
Gotze’s brother, Felix, is with Dortmund’s youth team at the age of just 15. His older brother, Fabian, is also a professional soccer player with SpVgg Unterhaching in the German lower leagues. Fabian was too a member of Dortmund’s famed youth academy. The boy’s father, Jurgen, is a professor at the Dortmund University of Technology.
5. His Girlfriend Is One of Germany’s Hottest Models
Since 2012, Gotze has been dating German model Ann-Kathrin Brommel. The couple are constantly featured on social media together. His girlfriend is also a pop star in Germany, with two hits, “This Is Me” and “Body Language,” under her belt. Brommel had previously stated that she sees Beyonce as her role model.