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Herbert Hainer on the transfer market, promoting youth, and the future of Bayern Munich

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Uli Hoeness’ designated successor, Herbert Hainer discussed his philosophy on the transfer market and how he wants to keep the club and its fans close.

Adidas Golden Ball Trophy-2010 FIFA World Cup
Herbert Hainer (right) will soon take over as he President of Bayern Munich
Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images for adidas

Herbert Hainer is set to take over Uli Hoeness’ position as Bayern Munich’s president on November 15. Formerly the CEO of Adidas, Hainer has experience at the top. In an interview with FC BayernTV (via Transfermarkt and AZ) he commented on how he views the transfer market, competition in the Bundesliga and Europe, and the importance of a good relationship between the club and its fans.

Hainer first talked about how there is constant competition not only in the Bundesliga but also across Europe and internationally. He also commented on how a player’s transfer value changes almost daily. He said,

Today, we no longer have a competition that only relates to the German Bundesliga, but rather we have a competition in European and international football. This can be seen from the transfer sums that buzz around. With transfer sums, the levels change almost daily.

Hainer also emphasized the need for balance between promoting youth players and buying players for large sums of money. Hainer wants to make sure that Bayern does not become too dependent on one or the other. He said,

Our bank account used to be unique; today, clubs pay €220 million for one player. There will certainly be new challenges for Bayern Munich. Do we want to play along? Do we want to focus more on promoting young talent? Probably one will not go without the other. So how can we reconcile that we have to invest on the one hand and, on the other hand, also see that we are not totally dependent on the transfer market. And how in this balancing act can we also be a home and cornerstone for our members and fans?

Hainer sees many big clubs that are successful but that do not have a close connection with their fans. Hainer wants to maintain the close relationship between Bayern and its fans going into the future. He said,

While there are many big clubs that are successful in sports, they are also no longer a basis for their fans. In exaggerated terms, they’re just a bunch of mercenaries, where the closeness to the fans and the club is no longer there.

In order to successfully transition into his new environment, Hainer also hopes for support from Uli Hoeness and is more than willing to accept his advice. He said, “One thing has to be said: Uli Hoeness has not cased to exist. (...) If I got his advice for free, I’d be stupid if I didn’t accept it.”

Hainer’s goal is for Bayern to win the Champions League again and to field an attractive team for the fans. He also said, however, that he doesn’t want to go crazy financially. He said,

I think Bayern Munich will always do everything they can to provide an attractive team. We owe that to our fans, too. On the other hand, I also believe that we don’t have to go through every financial madness. There are also possibilities in between, FC Bayern has proven that well over the last 10 or 20 years — that one can be successful and work responsibly in economic terms.