In case you’ve been living under a rock these past few months, Bayern Munich are in pressing need of a new manager. Jupp Heynckes, the current interim coach, has made it clear that he only wants to stay until the end of the season (more on that later).
Save us Jupp, you're our only hope!
A new report by kicker (via TZ), however, has revealed that Bayern Munich still has no clear plan beyond extending Heynckes one more year. Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic merely stated, “We will occupy ourselves with that in the coming months.”
Call it a dream, but it might become a reality. Uli Hoeness has been hoping (practically begging) for Jupp Heynckes to stay another year. While it’s still impossible to say whether Jupp could extend his fourth tenure at Bayern - it is certainly an option now, one that Bayern fans will probably be hoping for above all else.
Beyond another year of Heynckes, Bayern would have to find for 2019. Kicker mentions three possible candidates:
#1: Julian Nagelsmann
The rising star of the Bundesliga, Julian Nagelsmann has made no secret of the fact that he wants to manage Bayern someday in the future. Indeed, the young manager’s presence haunted Carlo Ancelotti like a dark cloud in the dying days of his tenure. Corroborating rumors from October, Bayern apparently haven’t given up trying to make Nagelsmann Jupp’s successor to the throne, but there are complications.
Hoffenheim’s dismal performance in Europe has raised legitimate questions about Nagelsmann’s readiness to lead one of the world’s biggest clubs in domestic and international competition.
Hoffenheim also do not want to let Nagelsmann leave until 2019, when a release clause on his contract reportedly comes into effect. Whether or not this becomes a deal breaker for the Bavarians remains to be seen.
#2: Niko Kovac
On the other end of the Bundesliga spectrum (okay, not really) we have Niko Kovac. The Eintracht Frankfurt manager’s name is a relatively new addition to the gossip column, but his hiring would make sense. Frankfurt play a very stout, defensively robust brand of football while maintaining solidity in attack - a style of play Bayern could benefit from.
Kovac also has links to the Bavarians, having played for Munich from 2001 to 2003. This could be an especially important factor, since Bayern are apparently looking for a manager who knows the club from the inside.
Whether or not this plan comes into play, doubts will be raised about Kovac’s ability to coach a star studded Bayern lineup (same issue with Nagelsmann, really). Would Bayern take the risk?
#3: Ralph Hasenhuttl
Now this is a weird one. Ralph Hasenhuttl, the RB Leipzig manager? While he ruled himself out earlier in the season, it seems that Bayern are seriously considering the former Bayern Munich II player as a future managerial candidate. He’s got the chops, and he knows the club. He's under contract with Leipzig until 2019, so Bayern could theoretically get him for nothing - much like the club's policy with player signings (cough, cough, Goretzka). If Bayern come calling earlier, say, next year, would Leipzig really let him leave for anything less than a king’s ransom?
A few other potential candidates, of course, remain in the mix:
#4: Joachim Löw
Now this is a name that’s been linked with the Bayern job for quite some time. German’s world cup winning coach Jögi Löw has refused to rule out a return to club football after Russia, which has the rumor mills scrambling. Surely, he must be linked to Bayern, right? Löw would be a sensible choice, given that he knows most of the squad inside out after working with them on the national team.
He was the one who gave Joshua Kimmich his breakthrough at right back, and was a pillar of support for Thomas Müller and Jerome Boateng during troubled times under Carlo Ancelotti. Löw plays a dynamic brand of possession football, not dissimilar to Pep Guardiola’s system at Bayern - making him a good fit for the job.
Of course, questions will be asked. Is Löw really the man who can lead the record champions to European glory? With success with the national team translate to the club level? The last time Bayern Munich hired a popular former German national team coach - Jürgen Klinsmann - the results were disastrous.
#5: Thomas Tuchel
Last one, I swear. Apparently, former Borussia Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel remains an option for the Bavarians. Concerns have been raised about his ability to get along with senior players and management, which seems to be the only thing keeping him from being a front runner in this race. However, if all the other options remain unavailable until 2019, the Bayern bosses may just decide that Tuchel is the best possible hire under the circumstances.
Do you want another year of Jupp Heynckes?
This poll is closed
Have mercy, I’m a Dortmund fan.