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Jupp Heynckes on Hoeness, Rummenigge, the current Bayern Munich squad, and more...

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Always a pleasure to hear what Meister Heynckes has to say.

Celtic FC v Bayern Muenchen - UEFA Champions League Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Jupp Heynckes sat down with Bild+ (via tz) for a ‘big picture’ interview in which he discussed the current Bayern Munich squad, the harmony between Uli Hoeness and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, his wife, and more.

Current squad stacks up to 2012-2013 treble winners

Heynckes’s Bayern squad are still pushing for the treble and are sitting 20 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table (pending the result of Borussia Dortmund vs. FC Augsburg on Monday). Their 0-0 draw with Hertha Berlin marked only the second occasion in 25 outings across competitions where Bayern failed to win since Heynckes took charge. The current squad, Heyckes feels, is better than the one he guided to a treble triumph in the 2012-2013 campaign:

I think our squad now is better than the 2012/13 squad. But the Champions League now is a much stronger competition than it was back then, so there are no guarantees.

He’s fully confident that his side can go the distance on all fronts and admits that it’s his dream to complete the treble again after he turns 73 on May 9th:

My birthday wish would be to still have 3 Bayern games to play after that: the last Bundesliga game, the DFB Pokal final (19 May) and the Champions League final (26 May). These are dreams, you never know. But it would be fantastic.FC Bayern München: Heynckes verrät Forderung an Hoeneß und Rummenigge | FC Bayern
In einem Interview hat Trainer Jupp Heynckes eine Forderung an Karl-Heinz Rummenigge und Uli Hoeneß für seine Rückkehr zum FC Bayern München verraten.

Jupp Heynckes: Wenn es ernst wird, sage ich Ulrich *** BILDplus Inhalt *** - Bundesliga Saison 2017/18 - Bild.de
Der große Bayern-­Trainer exklusiv in BamS. Ganz privat: Über Hoeneß, ­seine Frau und seinen Hund Cando.BILD am SONNTAG: Was wird es eher geben: eine neue Bundesregierung oder eine *** BILDplus Inhalt ***

Harmony between Hoeness & Rummenigge

In his fourth stint as Bayern manager, Heynckes is no stranger to club president Uli Hoeness and CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. The three have developed a fantastic working and personal relationship over the years, and Heynckes attributes their professionalism as an integral part of the club’s successes, despite contrasting personalities:

I think it’s very important for a club like Bayern Munich that two big personalities like theirs go in one direction, speak with one voice. I had heard a lot at home in Schwalmtal where I thought, ‘That’s not how it should be.’ I’ve clearly expressed that in speaking with the two of them.

Hoeness and Rummenigge have not always seen eye to eye, so Heynckes made it clear to both of them when he agreed to take over as manager for the rest of the season that he needed their collaboration for everything to work:

The whole thing was unnecessary, actually, because there’s room for two on Olympus. Both of them have done immense things for the club. I feel now that it’s very advantageous that they are working together so harmoniously.

Catching a bit of homesickness

Throughout his managerial career, Heynckes has spent a great deal of time away from his family, which takes it’s toll, even on the manager of a top European football club. Heynckes’s duties have forced his wife and family to move multiple times across Europe with little time between matches and sessions to relax. At 72 years of age, he admits, home sickness is starting to get the best of him:

My wife misses me. We’ve always been together, in Madrid, in Bilbao, in Tenerife, in Lisbon. It’s not easy now. When you go back in the evening to your empty hotel room, it’s not fun. I go to bed early because I’m just tired.

Leaving Bayern in ‘adequate’ hands

Journalists and pundits alike have persistently asked: “Will Bayern extend Heynckes’s managerial contract for another season?” Although Jupp has been insistent that he’s done with coaching after this season, Hoeness has been quite reluctant to give up hope. Still, though, Heynckes seems set on his decision to step away from football after this season and trusts that Bayern will find the right person to succeed him:

I do not know who will be the next coach; that’s what the people in charge decide. At the moment they are very satisfied. But at FC Bayern you have to succeed, then you have the right coach. I assume that FC Bayern will get an adequate new coach in the summer.

He admits having to strike a serious tone when Hoeness approached him about a potential extension:

I know Karl-Heinz and Ulrich very well and know how they are when they are dead set on getting something. That’s why I accept that as I do. We have a very open relationship. They know how I tick, how I am, that I have a very clear opinion and also articulate it. And they apparently like that.

Heynckes revealed some interesting details of the bosses’ way of speaking to one another: when he’s not happy with something that president Hoeness has said, he addresses him as “Ulrich” rather than as “Uli.” Hoeness occasionally addresses him in turn as “Josef” when the two get down to business.