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Heynckes: James was depressed under Ancelotti after leaving Real Madrid

Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes spoke frankly about the mental state of James Rodriguez upon his arrival in Munich and how the Colombian has turned things around.

Photo by Thananuwat Srirasant/Getty Images for ICC

It was inevitable that the underlying story of Bayern Munich’s James Rodriguez facing off against his former team, Real Madrid, would come to the forefront this week. While much has been reported about James’ desire for retribution after being discarded from Los Blancos, the initial shock of the move to James and its subsequent effect, has not been talked about much.

Well, until now.

At Bayern Munich’s press conference ahead of tomorrow’s Champions League clash with Real Madrid, Jupp Heynckes talked openly about James’ reaction to the loan announcement, his mental state upon arriving in Munich, and and how he rebounded from the initial disappointment.

When I came here, James was not in good form and also not in a good mood. I then spoke with him often and took care of him, and he grew more open and felt more comfortable. His development has been wonderful. He’s an integral part of Bayern.

James eventually shook off that malaise, embraced the Bayern culture and has became an integral part of the team’s Bundesliga title run and also its opportunity to also secure the DFB Pokal and Champions League crowns respectively. James’ performance has impressed the Bayern brass enough to initiate talks of a longer-term future with Die Roten.

Some of our spectators are captivated when they see James Rodriguez. He’s an integral part of the Bayern team, has great imagination, and is a top player. He has arrived—and he’s learning German.

Bayern Munich indicated earlier this month that the club intends to activate the €42 million purchase option included in James’s loan to Munich. As Karl-Heinz Rummenigge bluntly put it, “We’re very happy with James. We have a purchase option and we’re going to trigger it.”

Knowing the effect that the move had on James, one has to wonder if Heynckes has factored in how motivated the Colombian will be when compiling his starting XI. Surely, a manager with the brilliant feel for his team like Heynckes has will be able to capitalize on the burning ambition and determination that James will have going into a huge game like Bayern vs. Real Madrid.

As Heynckes has rarely misfired when pushing the buttons of his roster, the Bayern faithful should feel comfortable knowing that the 72-year-old will have the expert intuition to deploy James in the most effective manner to maximize his desire to show Real Madrid what they are missing.

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