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Before the Champions League blast: crutches, turban, coach frustration: “witched” Bayern days

Before the Champions League blast: crutches, turban, coach frustration: “witched” Bayern days

The “sandwich game” in Stuttgart does not bring anything good for FC Bayern. But Tuchel quickly puts the 1:3 behind him and only thinks about “what we need in Madrid”. Eberl needs a coaching solution.

The pictures of sad Raphael Guerreiro on crutches and Eric Dier wearing a turban after a laceration on his head were symbolic of FC Bayern before the big football night at the Estadio Santiago Bernabéu.

Injured professionals, frustration and painful scratches when looking for a coach – and as a negative addition, a 1:3 (1:1) at VfB Stuttgart: Things are anything but smooth for the Munich team before the last title match against Real Madrid, in which the dream of Wembley will come true.

“It’s jinxed,” groaned coach Thomas Tuchel. It wasn’t just him who was least bothered by the seventh defeat of the season in the Bundesliga (as many as twelve years ago). “It was the famous sandwich game between two Champions League semi-finals,” said Tuchel about the mentally difficult test in everyday league life between the 2-2 draw in the first leg against Madrid, who became champions in Spain at the weekend, and the decisive second game this Wednesday (9 p.m./DAZN).

Tuchel: “We will be runners-up”

Tuchel briefly stated that the lead over Stuttgart’s famous team had narrowed to two points: “We’ll be runners-up!” On the two-hour bus ride from the Stuttgart Arena back to Munich on Saturday evening, he just wanted to “think about what we need in Madrid.” That’s a lot, but above all they are fit and resilient players who can fight with heart and energy for 120 minutes if necessary.

But Bayern currently have far too few of them after the Portuguese Guerreiro seriously injured his foot in the sold-out Stuttgart stadium and the injured Englishman Dier was substituted at half-time as a precaution.

Mathematics in the medical meetings

Guerreiro is out of Madrid with an ankle ligament and capsule injury. De Ligt, Musiala, Sané, Laimer, Upamecano, Dier – the list of worries is long, far too long. Tuchel described the bad luck with injuries, which captain Manuel Neuer called a “never ending story,” with an insight into his work situation. “We now do more mathematics in the medical meetings before games. This one can play 60 minutes, this one can play 30 minutes, this one can play 30 minutes, this one can’t play at all,” said the coach, describing his helplessness when it comes to line-up questions.

Against VfB, Tuchel spared as many stars as possible. The rest tried to get through the 90 minutes as unscathed as possible. Only penalty taker Harry Kane and captain Neuer were convincing, but they still had to swallow three goals from Leonidas Stergiou as well as Woo-yeong Jeong and Silas Katompa Mvumpa. “We never accept defeat,” said Neuer, but his head was just distracted. “We know that a really big game is waiting for us. It will be another final at the Bernabéu – and we want to win it,” said the national goalkeeper. There is still a happy ending on June 1st.

Hainer: Agreement with Tuchel is in place

Also for Tuchel. He still has three, maximum four games left on the Bayern bench. “The agreement stands,” confirmed President and Supervisory Board Chairman Herbert Hainer at the weekend regarding the separation decision at the end of the season.

For sports director Max Eberl, a backward role with Tuchel is not an option either. After the failures of Xabi Alonso (Bayer Leverkusen), national coach Julian Nagelsmann and the fresh “blow” of the no from Austria’s national coach Ralf Rangnick, the sports director is faced with the tricky task of presenting a coach who is now even more than an emergency solution. They are “continuing to look for a partner,” said Eberl in Stuttgart. But in the end two would have to agree, he added.

In the meantime, every coach who extends a contract with a club or commits to an existing commitment is seen as a rejection from Bayern, which stinks for the bosses around Eberl. Nevertheless, the 50-year-old assured: “We won’t take someone who is free somewhere and register, but we still want to find someone who can work for Bayern Munich in the next few years.” That doesn’t sound like a temporary solution.

Trainer search: “Suddenly doors open”

With another sentence, Eberl opened up space for speculation. “Suddenly doors open where you thought three weeks ago were impossible.” Has a candidate’s situation changed at short notice? Hansi Flick was flirting with FC Barcelona? But Xavi continues there. Tuchel would like to postpone the annoying topic at least until Real. “We still have a coach under contract at FC Bayern. Then it’s a form of respect not to make such a big issue out of it,” he said at the weekend. At least none bigger than the all-or-nothing game in Madrid.

Source: Stern

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