Lehmann – It was never personal with Almunia

Jens Lehmann
Jens Lehmann

Jens Lehmann and Manuel Almunia were never the best of friends during their time with us. 

Speaking exclusively to our 'In Lockdown' podcast, our former Germany goalkeeper explained the dynamics of their complicated relationship. 
"[Manuel Almunia] learnt something new in his goalkeeping life," Lehmann said. "[That] other goalkeepers don't always support him because it's a fight to be number one. 

"He wasn't used to it and I was fighting him in every training session until I got my place back. When I left Arsenal, I had a conversation with him and said, 'Manuel, I like you very much as a person, but you need to understand that I had to get my place back.
“’I know you hated me, but I never hated you because it was just a professional relationship.' He was very surprised by that. 
"Now, afterwards, we have a very good relationship because you realise that it was never personal. I always knew that he was a very nice guy and a great goalkeeper as well. His only disadvantage was that he came into the game, the big game, a little bit late. Sometimes it's not easy to cope with the pressure."

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