Not having to be out of the underdog week in week out, but the favorite. The Dutch PSV’er Philipp Max is clear: he wants to play for the prizes. “We’re always expected to win here. That’s good for my development.”
The 26-year-old leftback, who comes from FC Augsburg, didn’t have to think long when technical manager John de Jong and trainer Roger Schmidt knocked on his door and unfolded their plans with him.
PSV relieved of a problem case?
Max, who has signed for four years, should become a stable and reliable force on the left back position, often a problem case in the past seasons in Eindhoven.
In the past year alone PSV had Toni Lato, Olivier Boscagli, Nick Viergever and Michal Sadílek at its disposal, when Ricardo Rodríguez was hired in the winter. The latter met the wishes of the lead, but turned out to be too expensive and left again. A lot is expected of Max. Not for nothing PSV had eight million euros for the all-rounder on the left flank.
And the high expectations are mutual, because Max thought the time was ripe for a step up.
“With Augsburg, I often played a defensive role. The village against the big city, that’s going to be different with PSV”, says the left back who will play in Eindhoven with his familiar back number 31.
With eight goals and six assists in the German league last season, the German was an offensive defender and was on the scouting list for many a top club.
PSV eventually drew the longest end. “PSV’s total package looks good. And there is also a German trainer here,” Max explains. “I’m also someone who doesn’t hesitate for long. After the talks with De Jong I quickly found out that I wanted to go to PSV”
Max has now built up five years of Bundesliga experience and since the 2017/2018 season is one of the most offensive left backs in Europe, looking at the number of goals and assists.
However, these figures have not yet resulted in an invitation to the national team. However, Max does not suffer from that. “Why hasn’t Joachim Löw called me yet?” he responds. “Haha, I wouldn’t know. I just have to keep trying.”
Max played with the German team three times during the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and then won a silver medal with his country.
PSV is playing in the run-up to the new premier league season, which starts for the club on Sunday 13 September with an away game against FC Groningen, a practice game against the German Viktoria Köln today and a game against MSV Duisburg next Tuesday.