Dhe next championship of his FC Bayern has already been decided for Uli Hoeneß – and he simply rumbles away any doubts about Manuel Neuer’s return. “I find this swan song, which partially descends on Manuel Neuer, very strange. I think that’s unbelievable,” said Munich’s honorary president after FC Bayern’s 26th first round championship in Sport1’s “one-two” on Sunday afternoon.
“Until a few months ago I thought he was the best goalkeeper in the world and now that’s all being questioned. I’m pretty sure that everything that’s happening right now will mean that Manuel is working even harder and harder on his comeback,” Hoeneß announced two days after FC Bayern’s 1-1 draw at RB Leipzig at the start of the Bundesliga already on.
Write off new (36)? Not with Hoeness. It will be seen in September “who will then be in goal with us,” said the Bayern patron, who at the same time expressly praised the lightning transfer Yann Sommer (34) from Borussia Mönchengladbach. “FC Bayern is happy to have a goalkeeper in Yann Sommer who will solve the problems at least for the next six months.”
The Swiss national goalkeeper, who was only signed on Thursday, signed a contract in Munich until the end of June 2025 – and is therefore even tied up a season longer than Neuer. The captain of the German national team broke his lower leg while ski touring about six weeks ago and will be out until the end of the season.
“Manuel knows that he made a mistake, that’s clear, he’s very sorry for that,” said Munich sports director Hasan Salihamidzic to the TV station BILD about Neuer’s momentous vacation. “The most important thing for us and Manuel is that he recovers from his injury and that he comes back just as strong as he was before.” Will Neuer be held financially responsible for the summer fee? At least Salihamidzic didn’t rule it out. It is discussed internally, according to the sports director.
Hoeneß shares Salihamidzic’s assessment. “He probably knows that Manuel made a mistake himself,” said the former Bayern president. “Despite everything, you shouldn’t forget what this man has done for FC Bayern. I’m pretty sure that this topic will be approached very carefully, calmly.”
“One hundred percent certain that Bayern will become champions”
Hoeneß cannot understand the future debate about the Bayern goal at all. Whether Manuel Neuer, Yann Sommer, Sven Ulreich or Alexander Nübel will be the last instance of defense for the Munich team from next season – this question will only be asked in the summer anyway. “I find it strange that around January 20 the problems of FC Bayern from July are being discussed,” said Hoeneß.
According to him, there will be no astonishment in the master question. At the end of May, FC Bayern will win their eleventh championship in a row – Hoeneß is certain: “I’m 100% certain that Bayern will become German champions. I don’t care what comes after that.”
Salihamidzic has meanwhile announced internal talks after Alexander Nübel criticized communication with Munich goalkeeping coach Toni Tapalovic. “Yes, that should have been the case,” Salihamidzic replied on Sunday on the TV channel Bild when asked whether Tapalovic should have contacted the goalkeeper Nübel, who was loaned to the French first division club AS Monaco: “We will talk about that internally”.
Nübel had previously given ZDF’s “Aktuelle Sportstudio” an insight into his relationship with the close confidant of Munich’s injured goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. “During the time I’ve been in Monaco, there hasn’t been much contact. Before that we had a normal relationship. I do believe that we could have exchanged views on the situation from time to time,” said Nübel.
“Both are very good friends”
The German soccer record champion had loaned the former U21 national goalkeeper to the Monegasque in 2021. After Neuer’s injury, the Munich club tried to get the 26-year-old back early, whose loan contract in France runs until the summer. Regardless of the fact that Monaco did not want to let Nübel go, according to media reports, Nübel could not imagine working with Tapalovic again.
Tapalovic is a longtime friend and also best man of Bayern keeper Manuel Neuer. “Sure, the two are very good friends. But in the end it’s about the goalkeeper coach training the goalkeeper in the best possible way and preparing him for the games,” Nübel commented on the relationship.
Hoeneß also spoke about Harry Kane in the “double pass”. The 29-year-old Tottenham Hotspur star striker, whose contract with Spurs expires in the summer of 2024, is one of Europe’s most desirable forwards
“Harry Kane is a great striker,” said Hoeneß. “But that’s an order of magnitude – I think City got out at 140 million last year: I can’t imagine FC Bayern wanting or being able to pay these sums.”
Whether FC Bayern will extend the sponsorship contract with Qatar Airways, which ends this year, remains to be seen. Hoeness made that clear.
“The fact is, I can’t say much about that. I know that Oliver Kahn spent a week in Qatar with Andi Jung and held talks there. Both sides are discussing a list of questions internally,” said Hoeneß.
Apparently it is not yet clear whether the Qatari state company wants to extend the contract. “The headwind that was felt here in Germany left its mark”.