St. Tropez. To most, it is a lovely island off the southeastern coast of France.
To Metrostars and now New York Red Bulls fans, it is a source of agita.
Back in 2000, world football legend Lothar Matthaus joined the Metrostars. It was a shocking move, even as the World Cup winning German international approached 40 years of age.
But what he is most remembered for was a midseason jaunt to the French island of St. Tropez– an excursion that lives on in Metro-Bull infamy.
Matthaus was supposed to be rehabbing his back. Instead, paparazzi snagged shots of him and his girlfriend enjoying the fun and sun of the French isle. This caused an uproar back in the United States — a controversy so great, it looked as if Matthaus’ days with the team would be over.
But there was more to the drama than meets the eye — a fact he shares on this week’s EoS Radio REDCAST!
“I had a good relationship with Bora (Milutinović) and I respected him a lot and we had nice conversations. The same with Charlie Stillitano,” Matthaus tells EoS Radio. “I came in March 2000 and Charlie was no longer in this position, we had a new coach and everything was changing!”
According to Matthaus, that change in leadership was central to what happened with the St. Tropez incident.
“The problem was with the conversation between me, (Octavio Zambrano) the coach and Nick Sakiewicz,” Matthaus explained. “With Bora and Charlie, I had an open conversation, and with (Sakiewicz and Zambrano), it was not open to me. They were caring about me like I was a young player. They didn’t know what to do with a superstar — and in this moment, I was a superstar.
“I was going there and had to train like an 18-year-old player,” he continued. “I was expecting something special in this way. With Bora, I had another deal, with Charlie, I had a private dinner. I didn’t feel they respect me like they had to respect me.”
Matthaus sheds light on that and so much more on this very special episode of EoS Radio!
Archived content originally from EmpireOfSoccer.com by Dave Martinez