In July you will return to your former club Borussia Dortmund. What do you expect from your return? Are you looking forward to it?
Of course I am looking forward to it. I grew up with this club and Dortmund is my hometown. My family and all my friends live there. And BVB will play in the Champions League next year, which is exciting, because we will play against some of the best teams in Europe. This will be an important step for my future career.
What is so special about the BVB?
Dortmund is the number one club in the Ruhr area. The fans are incredible and the atmosphere in the stadium definitely belongs to the most impressive ones in Germany. If you stand in front of the south stand, you literally get goose bumps. The club is being lead by a great manager and I am really looking forward to my return.
How hard is it to leave Mönchengladbach after such a successful season?
We really played well and had a fantastic season. After we won the relegation game the season before to stay in the Bundesliga, we had a great team spirit. Then, last season was sensational and this is why it is hard to say goodbye. I would like to thank all the fans that always supported me, especially after the transfer to Dortmund had been announced.
Against France you played your first full-length match for the German national team, and against Switzerland you scored your first goal. Are you looking forward to a chance to proove youself as the tournament progresses?
It is my first major international tournament and I will definitely do my best to pay back the trust and expectations that our coach gives me.
What does it mean to you to be part of the German national team?
As I said, it is my first major international tournament with Germany and I am very proud to be part of it. It is a great honor and to play for the German team and to compete against the best teams in Europe.
Besides Spain, the German team seems to be one of the favorites to win the tournament. How high do you rate Germany’s chances of winning the title? And what is your personal goal for the tournament?
Our goal is to win the tournament. I will try my best to support the team, of course preferably on the pitch.
What are your expectations for Portugal?
Portugal has a great team with an extremely strong individual player: Cristiano Ronaldo.
Since the beginning of the year you have your personal Facebook page with more than 200,000 fans already. How important is personal contact with the fans to you?
It is very important. Facebook is a great tool to be in touch my fans, especially the younger ones. I think it is a great way to interact with fans.
Do you have an idol?
Tomas Rosicky was always one of my favorite players. His dribbling in a very high speed always impressed me.
What would be the perfect team formation in your opinion (can include former players as well)?
Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Buffon (ITA)
Defenders: Roberto Carlos (BRA), Paolo Maldini (ITA), Franz Beckenbauer (GER), Cafu (BRA)
Midfielder: Andrés Iniesta (ESP), Xavi (ESP), Zinédine Zidane (FRA)
Striker: Cristiano Ronaldo (POR), Lionel Messi (ARG), Ronaldinho (BRA)
Recently there were quite a few images of you in the press that were taken by your technical partner Puma. Do you enjoy these shoots?
Well, I feel more comfortable on the football pitch, but it is always a pleasant change compared to daily training sessions. But smiling throughout a whole photo session is a really tough task ...
For the last year you have been playing in the Puma PowerCat 1.12. Which criteria are important to you when it comes to a football boot?
The boot gives me great comfort and suits me perfectly. It really helps me to control the ball.
Puma has been your partner for quite a few years now. What does this partnership mean to you?
To me it is very important to have a reliable partner that respects my wishes and needs. With Puma I also like that they produce great lifestyle products that I really like to wear in my private life as well.
How important is your look and style to you?
Every person looks after his outward appearance. I like to wear cool clothes and my hair is always styled.
What is never missing in your sports bag?
Of course my boots are never missing.