Wolfsburg - Space was at a premium at the press conference officially unveiling Andre Schürrle as the latest star name on the VfL Wolfsburg books at the start of February.
'I'm a different player'
The 24-year-old attacking all-rounder, “delighted” that the move from Chelsea FC had gone through just before the close of the winter transfer window, pronounced himself “raring to go” for his new club, revealing as well that national team coach Joachim Löw was “totally in favour of it. He thinks it's an excellent step for me to take. It's nice to have that kind of backing.”
The 2014 FIFA World Cup winner also stressed that swapping the Bundesliga for the English Premier League a year-and-a-half before was something he would “never regret. It was a great experience. I love that club. I really came on there, and learned an awful lot working under José Mourinho. I'm a different player now to the one that joined Chelsea.”
He certainly wasted little time getting down to business with his new employers, chipping in with two assists in a 3-0 win against TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on his debut. As the game drew to a close, a brief but telling exchange between Schürrle and Dieter Hecking was noted - thumbs up and a relaxed grin from the new man, answered by a satisfied nod from the head coach.
Dost in the form of his life
The satisfaction index has been inexorably on the rise in the weeks since. Schürrle's arrival has added a further dimension to a Wolfsburg forward line masterminded by the league's top assist provider, Kevin De Bruyne, and spearheaded by a born-again Bas Dost. The Dutch centre-forward is on a remarkable scoring spree, with nine goals in the five matchdays since action resumed after the winter break.
Second in the table, and ten points clear of closest pursuers Borussia Mönchengladbach, the Wolves would have to suffer an almighty collapse down the final straight to now be denied a place in the UEFA Champions League pot next season. “We can't just thrown that away now,” Dost vowed after his brace had earned the team a 2-1 home victory over Hertha Berlin on Matchday 22.
As to his own chances of finishing top of the individual scoring pile this season, the rangy sharpshooter joked, “For that to happen, Arjen Robben's going to have to take a break.” His equally on-song Dutch compatriot at FC Bayern München is currently on 16 goals, to his own eleven. Then again, considering Dost did not start a game until Matchday 15, it might be unwise to write him off too soon.