Baris Atik is the man of the season even though he has only played since March and the seson is not yet over. His performances simply stand out in a team that lacked coherence and a player of his format.
Form is temporary they say
And class is permanent. However, this current form can save Magdeburg from relegation. Magdeburg fans are currently on cloud nine and have good reason to be optimistic. Their beloveth colours have not lost their last five matches, gathering 13 from a possible 15 points, having scored ten and only conceded three. This has placed them among the top five teams in Europe if only form is taken into account. The press have been unanimous about the reason for this upswing: Baris Atik and of course the ideas of the new coach Christian Titz are bearing fruit now. However, it is on the pitch that matters most and here Atik shines and lets others shine, too. In his seven matches so far, he has scored four and created another three. That is a scorer point per game and quite some ratio! And while he shines, Magdeburg rise up the league, currently to 15th place.
The arrival of Baris Atik was under no good signs as he was immediately injured and thus ruled out for some of the toughest games Magdeburg had to face. The month of January was gruelling with six matches in 20 days. A player like Atik would have helped a lot. Alas, it was not until the new coach arrived that he got his chance and made the best of it.
Praise where praise is due?
Without a doubt, the fortunes of Magdeburg look a lot better since March and in this form they are a handful for any team; Ingolstadt, promotion contenders were the latest victims. Moreover, they are a joy to watch, something Club fans have not seen since spring 2018 – three (THREE!!!) years it is since they were somehow enjoyable. Back then they have won promotion to Bundesliga 2 and simply were too strong for any team in division three. How things have changed since. Titz is now the fifth coach trying his luck with his team and it seems to work.
Baris Atik meanwhile appears to have been the missing link. Everything he does looks easy and with purpose. There is a notion however, that it is easy for him to shine like a diamond since the team has been in disarray for most of 2020 but more importantly have been baldy coached or not coached at all. It is thus easy for him to step up, to step in and be praised as the saviour of Magdeburg. Simply because there has not been a player like him who made things possible on the pitch and at the same time work hard. This division is no playground and more often than not play is dictated by a physical approach rather than a fine technical play. With Atik Magdeburg have a player who has not played for six months but who immediately has made an impact. Yet, the overall impression is that it is very easy for him to stand out for the reasons mentioned above: a disbalanced team with many bargains but with no strategy.
The joy for him for being on the pitch is visible, even in each post match interview. This man radiates joy while at the same he does the talk on the pitch. In his own words he sees himself in Bundesliga 2 and while at Dynamo Dresden he played 24 and 27 games in two seasons respectively but never fully convinced. This may have many reasons. He has a point to prove and art Magdeburg he may just have found the club to do so. Again, in this form, Magdeburg are no easy game for anyone, with Atik in this form in particular. However, he shines because there is plenty of opportunity and no rival for his place or with capabilities anywhere near him.