After the Champions League exit
Problems at FC Bayern: Rummenigge teases Nagelsmann and Salihamidzic in interviews
The end of the Champions League has hit Bayern hard. Former chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has now spoken in two interviews with messages to coach Nagelsmann and new bosses.
FC Bayern is now clinging to the league title. The record champions will likely extend their title record and celebrate their tenth straight championship at the end of the season. In other competitions, however, they are eliminated. The end of the DFB Cup second round against Borussia Mönchengladbach was a nuisance, but manageable. The cup has the lowest status compared to the championship or the Champions League title, and if you have won it twenty times like Bayern, okay, you can do without it for a season.
On the other hand, losing the Champions League in the quarter-finals to underdogs FC Villarreal was a tougher number as it affected the club’s self-image. The requirements are such that you need at least the semi-finals, below you don’t do it with Munich. And losing to a small club that was considered an underdog makes the situation even worse.
Something is happening at Bayern
But no matter how you twist and turn it, whether you downplay the end in the first class or declare it a total disaster: something is happening at Bayern. Coach Julian Nagelsmann, sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic and CEO Oliver Kahn face their first real test.
An unmistakable sign of this is that ex-CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge spoke in detail in two interviews, namely in the central bodies of the German football media, the newspaper “Bild” and the “kicker”. The statements can be safely understood to mean that the ever-influential Rummenigge has serious concerns that FC Bayern could lose touch with European leaders. His statements are unequivocally addressed to the new bosses, as well as to coach Nagelsmann – as a warning and criticism.
Rummenigge describes the defining moment of the season at the stadium when the late goal was conceded and the end sealed. Rummenigge sent two predictions against the 34-year-old Nagelsmann, who only came in the summer. On the one hand, the departure is “not due to the quality of the workforce”. And the fact that the great form of the first half of the season was lost “is also linked to the fact that a different tactic is sometimes preferred. Since Louis van Gaal played in a 4-2-3-1, today today you can often see defensive back 3. Whether it’s from the distance I gained, I can’t say exactly how comfortable the team is.
The closed season for Nagelsmann is over
Now Nagelsmann can be sure of his job at Bayern, but Rummenigge’s words of course ensure that the period of public rest for him is over. When Rummenigge was still in charge, such statements were a wake-up call. Just remember how he once disbelieved Niko Kovac and damaged him so much.
A second criticism of Rummenigge is the public unrest due to the numerous contract negotiations, some of which have already been completed. Leon Goretzka, Joshua Kimmich and Kingsley Coman have had their contracts extended. No decision has yet been made for Manuel Neuer, Thomas Müller, Robert Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry, all of whom have terms until 2023. Here, too, Rummenigge has a clear opinion. “Which is of course noticeable: there are constant talks about contracts in the media. (…) We are now in the last quarter of the season, so it’s not conducive, so there are unrest in the club. And you can feel it,” Rummenigge said. So there too it is not going optimally.
Nevertheless, he wishes the new management “good luck in any case” and recalls the crises of the past. “We also had heavy defeats, in 1999 or 2012, which gave us sleepless nights. But Bayern have always been known for solving problems, overcoming challenges and, in the end, rising like a phoenix from the ashes. “
Before Bayern become a phoenix, they must survive turbulent weeks and, above all, settle the question of the contract with the big three (Lewandowski, Müller, Neuer). And the team needs fresh blood. Besides the final departure of Niklas Süle, there will be others. In addition to Süle, former record holder Corentin Tolisso is also expected to leave the club at the end of the season. This could also apply to reserve players like Bouna Sarr, Marc Roca or Omar Richards – if there are offers for them.
Sources: “kicker”, “Bild” (paid content)