“Diamond eyes” is the nickname that Michael Zorc, the director of Dortmund, gave Sven Mislintat. Former Dortmund and Arsenal scouts have the talent to hunt down “raw gems” from every corner of the world.
‘Diamond eyes’ Sven Mislintat
Robert Lewandowski, Shinji Kagawa, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Ousmane Dembele, Mats Hummels, Christian Pulisic, Jadon Sancho … are typical names that Sven Mislintat brought to Dortmund after 11 years working as the head of recruitment.
In the scouted village (scouts, who are often tasked to spy on opponents or watch players’ legs) in Europe, the 47-year-old man is considered a top star. After the imprints at Dortmund and Arsenal, Mislintat currently holds the position of GĐTT at VfB Stuttgart with the task of reviving the once-powerful force of German football.
Sven Mislintat played amateur football before returning as a scout for Dortmund in 2006. Mislintat’s first signing was Shinji Kagawa in 2010.
He found the Japanese midfielder in the second division Cerezo Osaka and brought in Dortmund for 350,000 euros. Two years later, Dortmund sold Kagawa to MU for 16 million euros. That is the typical success of Sven Mislintat, who is capable of finding raw gems that no one else has found.
To do that, Sven Mislintat in addition to the keen eye must also have the skills and determination to the end. In 2010, Dortmund was in financial need, so Mislintat was only allowed to recruit cheap players.
From a former Dortmund player Thomas Kroth, Mislintat flew to Japan to see Kagawa’s legs. He rented a cheap motel room to save money, stayed up all night to watch the videos of Kagawa playing soccer. Mislintat flew to Japan a total of 6 times to recruit the 21-year-old midfielder.
Also in the summer of 2010, Sven Mislintat brought Lewandowski. Hummels and Jakub Blaszczykowski are also directed by a German scout. It can be said that if Klopp led Dortmund to dominate the Bundesliga in the period of 2010-2012, the creator of the foundation is none other than Mislintat. Before leaving Dortmund to go to Arsenal in 2017, Mislintat was promptly brought a gem for the Ruhr region team, Jadon Sancho.
At Arsenal, Sven Mislintat as the head of recruitment continues to develop talent. Matteo Guendouzi from an unknown player in the French second division was dragged back to the Emirates to become a quality midfielder in the Premier League. More can be said of Lucas Torreira and Bernd Leno, the contracts that Mislintat brought to Arsenal.
Unfortunately, due to conflicts with the Arsenal leadership, Sven Mislintat broke up in February 2019 in London before joining Stuttgart two months later. Coach Unai Emery once said that losing Mislintat is an irreparable loss for Arsenal. As for the director of Stuttgart, he is continuing to achieve success by helping the southwestern team of Germany rise to second in the German Second Division rankings thereby full of hope for the promotion of the Bundesliga.
In addition to the eyes of recruiting elite players, Sven Mislintat also pioneered the application of technology. While at Dortmund, he was the first in the Bundesliga to apply the Footbonaut gym to the players. Footbonaut was invented by Christian Guettler, a special gym that helps players handle the ball being fired continuously from 8 directions. The use of this advanced technology is considered a contributing factor to the success of Dortmund under Klopp.
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