Pros 10.07.2019 — 17:44 Uhr

Meier: "I will push for my place"

Mainz’s new signing from FC Bayern is aware of his role as backup, but is determined to put pressure on teammate Aarón Martin, whilst also learning from him.

Jonathan Meier (right) has his sights set on first team football.

New left back Jonathan Meier had one thing going for him before even setting foot in Mainz: His date of birth, 11/11/99. Whether this will help the 19-year-old make the leap into the Bundesliga and establish himself with the Zerofivers, remains to be seen, but the next few weeks should go some way to providing an answer. At the very least, he has made a promising impression so far: "It may have taken me a day or two to get used to things, but I feel better with every training session," he said.

What the first ten days have shown is that Jonathan Meier is not a loud player. He is not someone who raises his voice on the pitch or seeks attention. But the young left-footer, who gained promotion to the third tier with the FC Bayern second team last season, has impressed his new employers with his focus. Meier has shown that he can play football and has good tactical awareness. In Munich’s academies, at 1860 and FC Bayern, Mainz’s new signing received outstanding training, according to Rouven Schröder. "He’s quick and dynamic, embodies the modern left-back and applies this in his attacking game. Jonathan is also a great character with big ambitions to develop at the highest level," said the sporting director upon signing the youngster.

Help and push one another

Meier has already started to show a lot of this in training. Upon signing a contract at the Bruchweg until 2022, the player was aware of his role in the team. Aarón, the Spain U21 international, who will return to training next week, played 33 of 34 possible Bundesliga games last season and intends to keep his position as a starting XI regular. With Gaetan Bussmann’s departure, Meier is now the obvious back-up choice for that position. "I know I’m second choice to him. Aarón is a very good player, someone I can learn a lot from, but I will still be pushing for my place," declared the Zerofivers’ new addition on Tuesday. "Obviously I want to play. I think it’s good for Aarón as well, to feel pressure from me and to keep improving. This will allow us to help and push one other."   

Ambitious, yet realistic words from Jonathan Meier, who regularly trained with the record champions first team, making the Bundesliga matchday squad twice and even featured in one Champions League squad. Mostly, he played in the Regionalliga for the second team – 19 times to be specific. "When you’re playing for FC Bayern’s second team, the next step is to establish yourself somewhere in the professional sphere. I think that’s a bit easier here than in Munich. It’s quite hard to establish yourself on a long-term basis there and not many have managed to do so at all in recent years."  

 

Develop in all areas

Talks with Sandro Schwarz and Rouven Schröder then convinced the talented youngster to sign for Mainz. "Everyone knows Mainz develop young players. This is a club that gives a lot of young players the chance to show themselves – the potential for development here is just very high. I want to improve in every session and gain experience. I want to develop as a player and as a person," explained the Munich born player, who spent six years at 1860 Munich before another six years at Bayern, where he was repositioned from central attacking midfield to fullback. Meier himself said that his style of play is influenced by pace and defending from the front, pressing, composure on the ball and technical ability.

At his new club, Meier was greeted by a young squad full of players his age - certainly not the worst company to help him settle in. "First and foremost, everyone is at a top level, and the lads of the same age think in the same way and can help each other. I think the mix here in Mainz is very good."