FC Bayern Munich: tensions between coach Nagelsmann and sporting director Salihamidžić

Salihamidzic vs Nagelsmann
“Boiling” squad disagreement in FC Bayern

FC Bayern can not use this argument at the end of a turbulent season: There are said to be tensions between coach Julian Nagelsmann and sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić. This is fatally reminiscent of the relationship between “Brazzo” and Hansi Flick.

This summer’s first big deal fluttered past FC Bayern. Nico Schlotterbeck joins BVB, as does Karim Adeyemi. Both are international with bright views. In the understanding of the great Uli Hoeneß, players who fit the record champions are therefore essential. Erling Haaland is also out of the market, the striker is switching to Manchester City. There is no need to say more about the Norwegian, he has the potential to dominate international football in the coming years. And then there’s Niklas Süle. He was the best central defender in Munich this season – and is now moving on. To Dortmund. Crazy.

If “Sport Bild” has its will, then these wild personalities are merely the latest excesses of Munich’s reluctance in the transfer market, which are supposed to create tensions internally. Between coach Julian Nagelsmann and sports director Hasan Salihamidžić. For the club, it must feel like a bitter déjà vu – with the worry that the situation may escalate again. As with its predecessor Hansi Flick. The current national coach had openly shared the squad’s disagreement with Salihamidžić, which had pushed the club to the breaking point emotionally. Flick would not just be the executor of the bosses’ fantasies. He wanted to (help) shape the squad. It would have started a revolution. Because such powerful coaches are not planned in Munich.

Very limited budget

Nagelsmann probably does this experience as well. According to “Sport Bild”, there are several missed opportunities in the transfer market that irritate the coach. Schlotterbeck, for example, who the 34-year-old must have proposed to over the phone. Or Amine Adli, who switched to Bayer Leverkusen last summer. And also Denis Zakaria. The defensive midfielder from Borussia Mönchengladbach was available for only five million euros, Juventus snapped. A central defender, a winger, a six – these are all positions that the record champions need.

The problem with the record champions: the financial resources are apparently limited. Should the transfer of the intensely engaged Ryan Gravenberch from Ajax Amsterdam be completed (30 million euros plus fees for consultants), funds would first have to be raised through sales to additional newcomers. This situation, combined with the hesitation in the negotiations, is said to have displeased i.a. Schlotterbeck. And Nagelsmann too. According to “Sport Bild”, he has handed over wish lists to his employer several times – however, the coach’s position in transfer cases has apparently weakened after Marcel Sabitzer’s transfer. The captain of RB Leipzig should definitely come, come – and only rarely delivered good performances. He was even considered a candidate for sale again, but will try a fresh start to the new season, his adviser says at least.

According to the report, a restart will also be advisable between the sporting director and the coach. For the magazine writes that it should “simmer” between the two alpha animals. A critical situation that had not necessarily reported itself. Unlike Flick, Nagelsmann was the Bosnian’s favorite candidate. He was already considered an “admirer” by the coach before signing the world record transfer fee. As “Bild” wrote last spring, “Salihamidžić and Nagelsmann are also on the same wavelength”. Although the coach also has very clear ideas, he is less stubborn than his predecessor. Well, that seems to have been disproved now.

The first appointment of the summer has been set

Munich’s squad for this season was a pretty brave effort. One that Salihamidžić deliberately accepted. He defended against the transfer frenzy of Messi (PSG), Jack Grealish (Man City), Jadon Sancho (Man United) or Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea). He had good (reasonable) reasons. But the bet worked only to a limited extent – not all players redeemed what they had promised.

What FC Bayern can do this summer does not seem clear yet. According to “Kicker”, only the transfer of right-back Noussair Mazraoui is ready. He comes on a free transfer from Ajax Amsterdam. Club colleague Gravenberch should come as a reinforcement to the midfield center. There are also rumors about Konrad Laimer, the powerful sweeper from RB Leipzig, and Borna Sosa, left back from VfB Stuttgart. According to “Sport Bild”, however, the coaching team doubts that the latter two can be transferred.

An explosive encounter on the way

The unrest in the club, which has borne throughout the season, to Nagelsmann’s regret, should be dealt with in one session. It must also be about the coach’s work, some stars are said to be dissatisfied with the complex exercises, as well as with the tactical orientation. The system should also be criticized by the bosses. The coach can also use his tactics to compensate for construction sites in the squad. The three-man chain in particular, which Nagelsmann prefers, is not said to have fallen into good soil with Salihamidžić and has always been a problem. Nagelsmann, on the other hand, complained several times that he could not only be a coach, but was in demand as a crisis communicator on complicated topics such as Corona, vaccinations and Qatar, while bosses Salihamidžić and Oliver Kahn held back discreetly. Much different from their loud and headstrong predecessors Uli Hoeneß and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

In the meeting, which according to “Kicker” could mean a “break” for the club, everything that did not go well had to be discussed. And probably also the design of the squad of the future. Because there are still big questions about the current staff. What’s next for Robert Lewandowski? What will become of Serge Gnabry? Both players are still under contract in Munich until the summer of 2023 and are in fact indispensable for the club, but flirt with new challenges. A lot of work for the sporting director, but he is already dampening expectations of a major upheaval. “I totally believe in the team. We love these guys,” he said excitedly Sunday night. “These are amazing guys. And they’ll step on the gas next year.” Does Julian Nagelsmann like it?

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