Who is Bayern Munich’s new superstar?

On Sunday afternoon, Bayern Munich overcame Wolfsburg 2-0 at the Allianz Arena to bounce back from defeat at the hands of Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final. However, due to injuries and fatigue, Thomas Tuchel fielded a much-changed squad, leading to one player catching the eye of those watching.

Less than five minutes into the bout, 19-year-old Lovro Zvonarek opened the scoring for Der Rekordmeister. In his full debut for the senior team, Zvonarek instantly made a name for himself, but who is Bayern’s new superstar?

The new Luka Modrić

Born in Čakovec, Croatia, Zvonarek has represented his home nation at every youth level, recently making his first two appearances for the Croatia U-21 side in November 2023. As well as this, Zvonarek can boast about holding the record for the youngest goalscorer in the history of the Croatian top flight, as well as the youngest captain.

Having made the move to Bavaria in 2021, he was loaned back to Slaven Belupo, where he quickly garnered a reputation as the next Luka Modrić. When speaking to Bild, Zvonarek remarked how much of an honour it is to be compared to the one-time Ballon d’Or winner:

“Every Croatian boy who plays football has Modrić as an idol! That’s why I’m lucky if my name is mentioned next to his.”

With excellent ability on the ball, whether that be his quick thinking, game intelligence, dribbling, or a keen eye for a pass, it is clear to see why the 19-year-old is drawing such comparisons. However, off the field, Zvonarek is also a valued member of the Bayern squad, as remarked by Tuchel after Bayern’s victory over Wolfsburg:

“Lovro is a fine guy. Look how he smiles when he goes on the field or comes off the field. That’s how he trains, too. He is extremely hardworking. He did great and scored a goal. There’s really no one who doesn’t begrudge him that because he’s really a fine guy.”

As well as this, it is apparent how humble and down-to-earth the 19-year-old is. Speaking after the game, Zvonarek commented on his first full start for Der Rekordmeister: 

“My effort was a dream come true, and the goal in the full Allianz Arena was a very important moment for me. Many players supported me and gave me tips. Aleks, in particular, helped me a lot. We have a good connection with each other.”

As Bayern head to Hoffenheim for the final fixture of the season, there is hope among Bayern fans that Zvonarek will start in the midfield once again. Regardless, even if he does reside on the bench, it appears that Zvonarek has every trait required to become the next Bayern superstar, leading the midfield alongside Aleksandar Pavlović for years to come.

GGFN | Will Shopland

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