"It is important that you identify fully with the project."
The FC-Bayern-Star Thomas Müller is ambassador for Nicolaidis Foundation an organisation that supports children after the loss of a parent.
There is not really much going on at the training ground for FC Bayern. The pre-season will start in about two weeks but Thomas Müller is already back from vacation, a week in Portugal has granted him and his wife Lisa some peace. The couple could not extend their holidays because Lisa takes part in equestrian events and their dog Mickey couldnt be let alone any longer.
Thomas Brown seems totally satisfied with his holiday when he speaks to the press on a chilly Monday morning in Sabener road explaining his activities as a representative of Nicolaidis Foundation. Martina Münch Nicolaidis established the foundation for the needs of young widows, widowers and their children after the death of her husband.
One of the projects of the non-profit organization is named "Young Wings" and is aimed particularly at children and young people who have lost a parent or another significant carer .The affected 12 - to 21-year-olds can chat online in forums with each other and they have the opportunity to receive advices from a teacher.
Thomas is very interested in this project "It's not just a couple of teenagers who experience such a problem, there is almost a million of kids in the same situation," says the footballer, who has long weighted the request of the Foundation, before accepting it. "It is important that you fully identify with the project -. That's what I'm doing" Of course he could not set himself up as a consultant for the young people, "it would be presumptuous," he says. What he feels more confident in doing is to spread the problem in the public and to encourage potential donors. "I can help the young people from the perspective of an athlete, urging them not to lose their fighting spirit in order to have a better life."
The 14-year-old girl sitting next to Müller on the podium in front of the journalists and carrying the same first name of the footballer's wife, gives the impression that Thomas is succeeding in this project. Lisa's father died when she was six weeks old, the analysis of this shock has given fate to the young girl from Munich, not only because of the virtual dialogue "with like-minded people," but, as she explains "the important thing is the anonymity, you maintain your privacy and talk with people who understand you much better than a therapist."
Certainly the Müllers do not enjoy anonymity since the meteoric rise of the kicker in the season 2009/10. But in private life, it is not always an advantage if someone knows everything about you. Therefore, the couple has now given up their residency in Oberhaching and moved to the more reserved Straßlach-Dingharting.
"The photographers used to constantly snap into the living room" says Lisa Müller. The interest of the tabloids for the young national team player and his pretty wife exceeds imagination, reveals a consultant from the firm of Louis' Wiggerl "Kögl, who cares for Müller concerns.
A reporter asks the World Cup top scorer what is his family plan, Müller replies: "I see myself as a child, we still dont feel the responsibility to have children.He leaves then the press to go playing on the field with a dozen youths from the "Young Wings" project.
Wiggerl Kögl stands on the sidelines and watches. The former Bayern professional is always there when his protégé appears publicly. He also managed the request of Nicolaidis Foundation. "I keep getting requests, we choose very carefully," says Kögl, who points out that Müller's commitment to "Young Wings" is free of any financial interests. Nor does the fact that even colleagues such as Philipp Lahm are socially engaged influence the player. "I'm certainly not involved in such a project, because everyone is."