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Strongly motivated

Jansen sets sights 'even higher' than before

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The view from former Monchengladbach starlet Marcell Jansen's front window at home is nothing short of idyllic, as the left-sided player's south Munich apartment looks out on the calmest imaginable rural landscape. His first couple of days back at work after the European championships have certainly been a great deal more hectic.

That is partly due to the changes at the Säbener Strasse in the last few weeks. Marcell described the new performance centre as "sensational", and he has also become acquainted with the new and enlarged coaching staff. It had all been no problem at all, the player reported. "The Euro is history. It's time to get going again," he stated, looking forward enthusiastically to the new season.

Ambition aplenty

Part of his keenness relates to mixed fortunes in 2007-8 for the 22-year-old, a regular in the first third of the campaign until he sustained a serious ankle injury in mid-November. He finally returned to squad duty after a three-month lay-off but found match practice hard to come by. "There are no miracles after a long spell on the sidelines," Jansen explained, "a lot of people have forgotten I was injured for three and a half months.“

As a result, Jansen's biggest wish for the new term is "to avoid injury in the first instance“. Everything else would then "follow automatically“. Philipp Lahm represents a powerful rival for the left-back berth, but Jansen sees that as no reason to throw in the towel. "We have a very competitive situation here, so the only way to respond is positively," he reasoned, "those of us who perform and deliver will get plenty of playing time. I have nothing to fear from anyone else.“

Jansen is hoping his confidence and determination will help him shift up another gear in his second season with Bayern. The 22-year-old has claimed a third-place medal from the World Cup, runners-up honours from the Euro and the double with FCB, "so I've already achieved quite a lot," he himself reflected, "but I'm setting my sights even higher. I'll never consider myself satisfied.“