‘It felt like my heart was being ripped out’ – Manuel Neuer opens up on horrific ski injury and sacking of close pal

Toni Tapalovic, his dear friend, and the dismissal of him, Manuel Neuer, revealed his experience of a painful injury, as the Bayern Munich superstar describes it as if his “heart was being torn apart”.

The renowned German goalkeeper had an accident while skiing last month after his country’s premature exit from the World Cup.

Manuel Neuer has revealed all about a traumatic few weeksCredit: Getty
Bayern Munich sacked his pal and goalkeeper coach Toni Tapalovic last monthCredit: Getty

The incident caused the 36-year-old to sustain a fractured leg, which has rendered him unable to play for the rest of the season.

The injury on his leg was caused by excessive bleeding, which restricted the swelling around the wound. The compression offered by Neuer’s ski boot has been attributed to holding his foot intact.

If the swelling around the leg had not been factors and if the boot and swift services had not been available, doctors would not have been able to operate immediately.

Luckily, Neuer was able to have surgery immediately and start the recovery process right away.

In an interview with The Athletic, Tapalovic, the goalkeeper coach and a close associate of Bayern Munich who had been with the club, disclosed that he was dismissed in 2011, exacerbating the already distressing final weeks.

Neuer mentioned in regards to the occurrence: “There was something beneath the snow that impeded my forward movement. I was moving at around 10 or 12km/h.”

“Our nearby peak was like this. Zoom down the slope and then enjoy a couple of apricot schnapps in the cabin before heading to Ischgl or Solden, unlike this wasn’t.”

Typically, it’s a piece of cake. Even solo, I’ve descended this ski slope numerous times. A rejuvenating experience for both body and mind, it served as a practice session.


“I deceived myself by stating, “It’s not very terrible, it’s not a significant matter,” but I refrained from praying. To begin with, one wishes for it to not be grave,” he added.

My threshold is rather high, as I have played games at Bayern in considerable pain. Some individuals may have never encountered such challenging experiences, but they are better at dealing with pain.

I was fully conscious of the time. It was surprising how apparent it became when all my friends were surprised. They knew that something was wrong, not the magnitude of it.

Following an apparent conflict with manager Julian Nagelsmann, Bayern announced Tapalovic’s departure and vaguely mentioned “variations in our collaborative approach” as he embarked on his path to recuperation.

Neuer stated: “Toni consistently displayed a team-oriented mindset while playing with us, and this was evident to everyone.”

He didn’t work for me for eleven and a half years, for the club, the coaching staff, and the entire group of goalkeepers.

“I can really perceive the distinction, but I don’t find it believable or sound objective. I understand that it doesn’t sound like me. We were always able to keep our personal and professional lives separate.”

“I felt like my heart was torn out. I was already down on the ground when I experienced a devastating blow.”

“It was the most merciless thing I’ve encountered in my profession. And I’ve encountered a lot.”

Neuer stated: “Everyone in our group of goalkeepers was devastated. People started crying uncontrollably.

“I think that says it all. We goalkeepers are a team within a team, but Toni was popular with the whole squad.

“There was no explanation that I could understand. Statements were made that I don’t agree with.

“No information I heard would have eliminated the chance of individuals conversing with one another and resolving matters.”