Marco Richter has been unstoppable for Germany at the UEFA European Under-21 Championship in Italy, taking his season-ending form with Augsburg onto the international stage.
bundesliga.com takes a closer look at the Marco Reus-styled forward who once scored seven goals in one game when he was 18…
Position: Winger/Attacking midfielder
Country: Germany (5 U21 caps/2 goals)
Born in Friedberg, just north of Frankfurt, Richter caught the eye of record Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich in his youth. After eight years in the Bavarians’ academy, he left for Augsburg in 2013 and was a shining light in their youth teams. His 40 goals in 60 games for Augsburg II would be a remarkable record for an out-and-out striker, but Richter’s wide position makes his total that much more impressive. His record included seven goals in a single Regionalliga (fourth division) game in 2016, with five coming in the first 17 minutes. All that at the age of just 18.
Since graduating to the first team at Augsburg he has managed five goals in 27 appearances, four of which came in just two Bundesliga games last season against VfB Stuttgart and Eintracht Frankfurt. His goal-scoring record at club level is also not for the want of trying: he averaged two shots per game in 2018/19 for a team that finished 15th. That attacking persistence has been paying off on the international stage so far this summer, with three goals and two assists in Germany’s opening two matches at the U21 Euros.
Watch: Richter's brace against Frankfurt!
Play a bit like: Marco Reus
Marcos Richter and Reus both wear the No.11 shirt when playing for Germany, but the similarities do not end there. Richter and Reus have a similar playing style. Elusiveness is what helped get the 21-year-old forward his two goals against Denmark in Germany’s opening game at the U21 Euros, demonstrating the ability to lose his marker in tight areas around the box and earn just enough space to get a shot away on goal. Raw pace and close control are two of Richter’s other key attributes, but what likens him most to the Borussia Dortmund captain could be his shooting style. The volley he scored against Stuttgart last season – one of two goals in a 6-0 win – showed off his remarkable technique, much like Reus, in shooting with the inside of his foot from a wide angle. Able to play on the wing, up front or even deeper in a No.10 role, Richter is also as versatile in attack as the BVB star.
Watch: Richter's ridiculous volley vs. Stuttgart!
Did you know?
Richter’s seven-goal haul for Augsburg’s reserves against SV Seligenporten were too much for the scoreboard the club’s Rosenaustadion, which could not accommodate double-digits. Richter also had two assists that day, although if that sounds like a lack of foresight on Augsburg’s part, allow then-youth coach Christian Wörns to explain.
“I imagine that I’ve experienced a lot in my career,” said the former Germany centre-back who made over 500 appearances for Bayer Leverkusen, Paris Saint-Germain and Dortmund in a glittering club career. “But I’ve never seen something like that!”
What they’re saying
"With Marco, his intuition is extremely pronounced. I had the idea that if you encourage his ‘street footballer’ mentality, it might work. And then you just play football the way you like it because you enjoy and love the game." – Germany U21 coach Stefan Kuntz
"He has even more in the tank when he looks at everything in his game and not only relies on his talent." – Former Augsburg coach Manuel Baum
"I'm not the kind of guy who shows off, but I don’t have to pinch myself. This is what I’ve been working for since my youth." – Marco Richter