Bayern supervisory board member Karl-Heinz Rummenigge talks in the evening newspaper about Munich's big game in Leverkusen, Bayern's offer for Xabi Alonso, new signings and former coach Nagelsmann: “Perhaps the average of points was not enough.

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge is now 68 years old, the former world-class striker was general director of the FC Bayern. She now works as a member of the club's supervisory board.

Evening news: Mr. Rummenigge, this Saturday all German fans are looking forward to the main match between Leverkusen and FC Bayern with great excitement. What kind of match do you expect, as Bayern are currently two points behind Leverkusen?

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge: Well, this time the roles are clearly distributed: Leverkusen is in pole position with a two-point lead. We have to try to win the game and we definitely shouldn't lose! Leverkusen has so far played an incredibly stable and confident season, as well as attractive football. I expect a difficult match, but FC Bayern is known for being prepared in these matches.

Rummenigge: Topping the table would be an important sign for Bayern

Evening news: What makes you optimistic that FC Bayern can overtake Leverkusen at the end of the season and thus win its 12th consecutive championship?

Rummenigge: Basically, we have always been second all season, sometimes four points behind; now we can even take the lead in the standings with a win on Saturday. It would be an important signal for us, but also for everyone. Bundesligathat the objective is to achieve the twelfth consecutive championship.

Evening news: Xabi Alonso shone as a brilliant playmaker during his time at Bayern, and is now also finding success at the start of his coaching career. How do you assess Alonso's evolution in Leverkusen?

Rummenigge: His evolution does not surprise me at all. He also wanted to hire him as an assistant coach. (2018/19, editor's note), unfortunately that didn't work back then. Already as a player he was the driver on the field and impressed with his great level of intelligence and discipline in the game. He trained with the best coaches, from Jupp Heynckes to Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti, and as smart as he is, he has obviously gathered and saved this experience. I can only take my hat off to what he has done to Bayer. You have to remember that when he came, they were the penultimate ones. Now they are first with this attractive football.

Harry Kane suits the whole club

Evening news: Thomas Tuchel has a better points average (2.38) as Bayern coach in the Bundesliga than his predecessor Julian Nagelsmann (2.19). However, there are some criticisms that Tuchel's football is not really attractive. How do you evaluate this criticism that Didi Hamann, among others, recently expressed?

Rummenigge: Perhaps Julian Nagelsmann's points average was not enough, otherwise Oliver Kahn and Hasan Salihamidzic would not have replaced him with Thomas Tuchel. As for Didi Hamann, I think any answer given to her simply makes the issue unnecessarily important.

Evening news: At Bayern, Harry Kane already has 24 goals in the league. He has been involved in many important transfers in the past. Where does Kane's transfer place you on the list of key player signings?

Rummenigge: The transfer of Harry Kane was an absolute priority in the summer because we were all clear that Bayern Munich's game needed a clear number 9. His 24 goals are not only a record, but are also decisive for Bayern's chances of defending their championship title. He is not only a good player, but also a great guy who is good for the whole club. He is also a role model in his off-field behavior towards the fans.

Rummenigge: “The truth is that this surprised me a little”

Evening news: Also Eric Dier, the other one. english people In the team, he shows good performance. How do you assess Dier's start at Bayern and, in general, the winter transfer period with the three new players signed by Christoph Freund?

Rummenigge: Frankly, Eric Dier surprised me a little. He hasn't practiced much at Tottenham this season, but he has performed well in every game he has been on the pitch so far and is an absolute alternative in defence. Physically powerful, strong in the air, tactically intelligent and with a great forward passing game. And the fact that he's good friends with Harry Kane doesn't hurt either. (smile). Sacha Boey is an interesting player, I can't judge Bryan Zaragoza yet. In general we are very happy with Christoph Freund because he does a very good job, he is a very hard worker and therefore will be successful.

Evening news: The Champions League continues on February 14 with the round of 16 against Lazio Roma. Do you know him Italian Football is very good, how should Lazio be evaluated?

Rummenigge: First of all, it must be said that Bayern Munich played in a top-level group stage and after the fourth matchday they were group champions. Therefore, we are favorites against Lazio, who are currently in ninth place in Serie A. I always say: the premier class really begins with the knockout phase! That's why it's important to stay on point and achieve maximum performance. You have to face the games with respect and a touch of humility. I hate to remind you of Villarreal. (Quarterfinals 2022, editor) .

The party after the victory at Wembley in 2013 “was memorable”

Evening news: Besides Bayern, who do you consider favorites in the fight to succeed in the Champions League? You have great memories of 2013 with the final location, Wembley.

Rummenigge: Now it is important to think and concentrate round after round. Of course, Wembley was a great experience when we won the Champions League after losing the final at home. in London We were able to beat Dortmund in a very dramatic match. I'll never forget it, and the after party was memorable too.

Evening news: The final will be held in Munich in 2025; The contracts of Manuel Neuer and Thomas Müller end after the 2024/25 season. Do you hope to continue involving Neuer and Müller at FC Bayern after their active careers?

Rummenigge: First of all, it must be said clearly: Manuel Neuer and Thomas Müller are two very important players of the last decade of Bayern Munich, and even more. They have contributed enormously to the eleven consecutive championships, to the two Champions League victories in 2013 and 2020 and, since both were here, to five Cup victories. Above all there are players who have committed themselves to FC Bayern and Furthermore, Thomas Müller has never played for another club. In the conversations we will have to find out if after their playing career they want to pursue a second career as a manager and, if so, the doors of FC Bayern should be open to them.

By Maximilian Koch