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Philipp Lahm Bayern’s next sporting director?

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The door appears to be open, if Lahm wants to succeed Matthias Sammer.

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Bayern Muenchen v TSG 1899 Hoffenheim - Bundesliga Photo by Matthias Hangst/Bongarts/Getty Images

It was just a week ago that Philipp Lahm intimated to the press that he might retire at the end of the current season in 2017, a year before his contract expires. Lahm said it depends on how his body felt. Should Lahm indeed decide to retire, his club may already have a new role for him waiting.

In an interview with Sky Sport, Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge stated that he could “very well” imagine Lahm as Bayern’s new sporting director. Indicating that a new “sporting director could come from the current team,” Rummenigge stated,

Philipp is an important player, a very good captain, who has also developed very well outside of soccer. He is someone who could play a part at Bayern Munich in the future. We certainly will not be able to fill the position of sporting director this year. If Philipp ends his career, he has to decide that all by himself. If he quits, we’ll discuss the subject together.

That is a strong indication that Lahm may be favored for the role, but it may come down to timing and what Lahm’s body tells him at the end of the season. Bayern has been without a sporting director since Matthias Sammer departed in July. Bayern can surely wait out this season, but if Lahm decides to play out his contract through 2018 after all, the club may seek another candidate for sporting director in the meantime.

One name that is still being prominently mentioned in Bundesliga circles is Mönchengladbach's sporting director Max Eberl. His counterpart Jörg Schmadtke at FC Köln recently praised the Bavarian-born Eberl as an ideal candidate for any club, including Bayern Munich. Whether Lahm or Eberl, the club would certainly be in good hands.