Oliver Kahn had just contritely dealt with his explosive agenda on the leadership course, coaching earthquake and the inevitable nine-man debate when triumphant Erling Haaland literally floated out of the Allianz Arena like a symbol for the Bayern crisis.
The former goalkeeper "Titan" Kahn, steeled by immense pressure situations, promised after the next title knockout despite all the longing for a star striker à la Haaland with calm words a self-critical analysis of Munich's misery, in which he is now particularly targeted.
"Now we're trying to become German champions. And then we'll certainly look into ourselves. Then we'll ask ourselves many, many questions," said Kahn after the 0: 3 and 1: 1 against Manchester City and the next sobering end in the Champions League quarter-finals, the third in a row since the last title was won in 2020. The respectable draw in the second leg, which was fought without a goal punch, was not enough. wounds instead of miracles. Internationally, Bayern are moving away from teams like Man City, which can now compete with defending champions Real Madrid again in the semifinals.
protests from the fans
A month after Julian Nagelsmann’s amazing coach swap with Thomas Tuchel, the glorious club with the most expensive squad in its history is threatened with its first untitled season since 2012. That would come from the powerful honorary president Uli Hoeneß, who held one of his rare cabin visits on the depressing premier class night , can hardly be tolerated. In the announced season evaluation, the word of the club patron from Tegernsee will have a much more important weight than, for example, the big banner in the fan curve. "Goals may be missed - but not the club's values! Question management policy!" Was the message to Kahn and Hasan Salihamidzic.
Since Kahn (53) replaced long-time CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge as the new CEO in the summer of 2021, the title balance is no longer Bayern-like. German champion in the first year, maximum national champion this season. "I played here for 14 years. I know what it's like here when goals aren't achieved. Then criticism just comes up," stated Kahn. The explosive situation was heated up by a tweet by Norwegian TV expert and ex-national player Jan Aage Fjörtoft, who fueled speculation about Kahn's future. Its replacement is "a matter of time," whispered Fjörtoft.
After the German champions left, rumors arose that the supervisory board had discussed replacing Kahn. "No, these rumors are not true," said the chairman of the supervisory board, Herbert Hainer, when asked by the German Press Agency.
The trainer experiment for which Kahn was responsible with Nagelsmann, who was obliged to set a record fee, failed. The success under Tuchel, who was sent to the stands with yellow-red in the final phase, does not materialize, at least in the short term. When the bosses made the managerial change, there were still three titles left. "We are totally convinced that with Thomas Tuchel we will sooner or later be back where we all want to be, namely at the top - also in Europe," said Kahn. And that's it!
Lack of goal power at Bayern
But does the current squad have the (king) class? At first glance and based on the performance in 180 minutes against City: yes. But momentous individual mistakes like Dayot Upamecano's in the first and second leg and a lack of goal power speak a different judgement. The quality of the ensemble of star coach Pep Guardiola, who marched through the stadium catacombs with a large entourage when he returned to Munich, cannot be matched by the Munich team. A penalty goal by Joshua Kimmich as the only goal in 180 minutes is revealing. What would have been in it if there had been another Robert Lewandowski on the lawn? Or City's leading scorer Haaland would wear the Bayern jersey?
"We tried everything in the run-up to the season to fill the nine, even with a nine that we saw today, but unfortunately not with us," remarked Kahn zu Haaland, who at 22 is currently the most accurate striker in Europe. "How many nines are there at the level of Robert Lewandowski? There aren't many," said Kahn: "And if so, that's in price regions that are extremely high."
Salihamidzic already admitted that Haaland, who switched from BVB to England for 75 million euros and a mega salary, lacked the "necessary small change". "In the next few weeks we will see what the coach has in mind, what the possibilities are and who is eligible. We will then also decide on the financial matters," said Salihamidzic. You "didn't kill" many chances against Man City in front of the goal.
Who will attack for Bayern in the future
The magic 100 million euro limit for a transfer could fall at FC Bayern for the first time this year. There has been a lot of speculation about Tottenham star Harry Kane, Victor Osimhen from SSC Napoli or Frankfurt's Randal Kolo Muani. It is striking that the semi-finalists City with Haaland, Real Madrid with Karim Benzema, AC Milan with Olivier Giroud and Inter Milan with Romelu Lukaku have real top-class nines.
"Our sporting goals are to play at the top in Europe. And whatever we have to do, FC Bayern is in a very good financial position," said President Hainer. The equity ratio is "uncanny" high and there is "still a little money in the fixed deposit account". The control committee, which Hoeneß also belongs to, seems inclined to approve a record transfer.
The new coach - "in love with Manchester" and "very satisfied" in Munich - protects and strengthens his current stars for the time being. Tuchel sees a "character test" coming up in the league finish, starting on Saturday against his ex-club Mainz. The 49-year-old is not necessarily to blame for the end of the cup and Champions League, although he surprised Thomas Müller in the starting XI with two city games without a figurehead. "We don't need to open things up," said Captain Müller. Like everyone in the FCB delegation, the veteran cited the poor pitch and the even worse performance of referee Clément Turpin. However, Müller also admitted that he had to "take his own nose".
Without the cup and the Champions League, Bayern have fewer games, but all the more debates. And should the eleventh championship in a row not succeed, Tuchel will also go into the summer and the coming season badly damaged. "The fact that we don't win the games is not due to any manager or coach or anyone else," said international Kimmich, "but solely to us players."