If there was not enough turmoil inside the Bayern Munich locker room already, Kingsley Coman decided to offer his opinion on the roster. The oft-injured, but exceptionally talented French winger said that the squad was “aging” and also - perhaps inadvertently - criticized Bayern’s front office for not acting quick enough to assess that in a report compiled by ESPN.
We have a very good team, but it’s true: It’s aging a bit. You must think about new players at the right time.
ESPN went on to look at the age of some veteran players on the roster.
Wingers Arjen Robben, 34, and Franck Ribery, 35, were both handed one-year contracts ahead of the season but appear to be entering the final months of their Bayern careers. Manuel Neuer, Robert Lewandowski, Jerome Boateng, Javi Martinez, Mats Hummels and Thomas Muller have all turned 30 or are approaching the mark within the next 10 months.
Uli Hoeness gave his opinion on the situation, as told to kicker and captured by ESPN.
And, in kicker, Bayern president Uli Hoeness has said that most players will be under close scrutiny in the next couple of months as the club plan a summer of upheaval in 2019. ”It depends on how they play,” Hoeness told kicker. “You must tell the players they are under pressure in the next three, four months. And you then must see who is still needed and who not.”
While Coman’s statement may be true and perhaps the intent was harmless, the 22-year old Frenchman has not exactly built up an extensive resume of prolonged greatness that would indicate that he holds enough weight in the locker room to make such assertions about teammates to the media.
Publicly, this will likely get swept under the rug, but internally it will surely get addressed. There is a lot of pride in that locker room and taking criticism from an “up-and-coming” player, who does not have a consistent track record of success might not go over so well. In addition, whether he meant it or not, implying that the team’s front office might have not acted soon enough to bring in “new players” will not go over well on Säbener Strasse.
This situation will likely not fester or linger as Bayern has historically had a way of smothering these types of issues. Still, in the interests of team chemistry, sometimes these types of comments are better left unsaid.