The wife of Gerd Muller has disclosed heartbreaking details of the Bayern Munich and Germany legend’s dementia, which includes not being able to eat much and lying in bed for nearly the whole day.
Bundesliga giants Bayern said that he had been suffering from the illness ‘for a long time’ in their public announcement about his condition in January 2015, and the former forward has been receiving treatment in Bavaria ever since.
But ahead of the 1974 World Cup winner’s 75th birthday on Tuesday, wife Uschi Muller has revealed the sad decline of his health over the past five years.
Gerd Muller (left) with wife Uschi (right), who has revealed the heartbreaking details of his dementia decline since his diagnosis
Bayern Munich publicly announced Muller was suffering from the illness in January 2015
‘He eats next to nothing, can hardly swallow, lies in bed for almost 24 hours, and has only a few waking moments,’ she told German outlet BILD.
‘It is so nice when he opens his eyes for a moment. He can sometimes signal yes and no with the blink of an eye.
‘He has always been a fighter, has always been brave, all his life. He is now too. Gerd sleeps towards its end. He has closed his eyes, is dozing, only rarely opens his mouth, and is given pureed food.
Muller, nicknamed ‘the bomber of the nation’, netted 68 goals in 62 games for West Germany, including in the 1974 final against the Netherlands (above)
But now his wife has revealed some of the difficulties the 1974 World Cup winner now faces
‘He is calm and peaceful, and I don’t think he has to suffer either. He’s slowly sleeping over.’
Muller’s wife of 53 years currently cares for him at a Bavarian nursing home in Wolfratshausen, but was not allowed to visit him for three months following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, which she said she was not able to explain to him.
But the German outlet adds that because he is considered a dying candidate, Uschi has now been allowed to visit him again, as is a second person for 20 minutes, such as daughter Nicole or former team-mate and close friend Paul Breitner.
Muller (left) and Paul Breitner (right) were team-mates at the 1974 World Cup and the latter still visits the former at his Bavarian nursing home
In addition to his goals for Germany, Muller netted 552 goals for Bayern Munich at club level
Bobby Charlton, the England and Manchester United icon, has been diagnosed with dementia
The latest details of Muller’s diagnosis come just a day after it was revealed that England and Manchester United legend Sir Bobby Charlton is suffering with the same illness.
The 83-year-old is the fifth member of England’s 1966 World Cup-winning team to suffer from the debilitating neurological condition.
It is understood that Charlton’s wife, Lady Norma, and family agreed for the information to be made public so it could help others affected by dementia.
Sportsmail reported in June that, according to Hans Woller, a biographer who visited Muller last year, he is wheelchair bound, mute and fed by his wife.
Muller had also struggled with a long battle with alcoholism before it was confirmed that he had dementia.
Muller, nicknamed ‘the bomber of the nation’, netted 68 goals in 62 games for West Germany, in addition to the 552 he scored for German champions Bayern.
Muller won four Bundesliga titles, including one on 1971-71 (above) during his Bayern career
Muller finished his playing career at Florida-based side Fort Lauderdale Strikers in 1981
Those goals saw him win four Bundesliga titles and as many German Cup wins, as well as three European cup wins.
For his national side, the 1972 Euros two years before the World Cup triumph, a tournament in which he scored four goals including one in the final against Holland.
Muller held Germany’s all-time scoring record with 68 goals until former Bayern forward Miroslav Klose surpassed his tally in their victorious 2014 World Cup campaign.
He ended his playing career in 1981 after a two-year spell with the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, a former American side based in Florida.
Muller was also Germany’s record goalscorer before Miroslav Klose broke his tally in 2014