Now that Bayern Munich have parted ways with Niko Kovac, the question of who will become their next head coach has the footballing media in a frenzy. Among the names that have come up so far, the most intriguing, of course, is that of current Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola.
As everyone knows, Guardiola coached Bayern Munich from 2013 to 2016, winning the Bundesliga three times and the DFB Pokal twice. He made the Champions League semis in each of his three seasons but failed to replicate the success of Jupp Heynckes’ treble team — something that persists as a black mark upon an otherwise stellar tenure.
When asked about the prospect of his former boss returning to the club, Bayern Munich defender (or I guess we should start saying “midfielder”) Joshua Kimmich seemed open to the idea (kicker):
I don’t know how realistic that is or what Bayern’s plan with Hansi is, but of course I know Guardiola. I have much to thank him for. He let me play in the Champions League and the Bundesliga as a player from the 2.Liga back then.
Kimmich arrived in the summer of 15/16, during Guardiola’s final season, as a little known defensive midfielder from the second division. The Catalan was clearly enamored of the youngster and gave him an extended run in the first team, including games against the likes of Juventus and Borussia Dortmund. This run propelled Kimmich’s meteoric rise to success, as he was soon made a starter for the German national team and later Bayern itself. Kimmich said of the prospect of Guardiola’s return,
We won the double together. After that season, I also became a national player. Therefore I definitely would not oppose it.
Of course, Bayern Munich are currently under the care of Hansi Flick. The former national team assistant has done a tremendous job in his first two games, which included a 4-0 thrashing of BVB. On Flick, Kimmich said,
Now we have won both games and you hear that it might go on until the winter or even the summer. The club has to decide what the options there are. Us players are not responsible for that.
Kimmich’s sentiment on Guardiola likely echoes that of many within the team and probably the club management itself. However, the question of whether Man City would let their star coach leave at all is a difficult one to answer. Their 3-1 loss to Liverpool on the weekend probably killed their title hopes for the season, but it’s hard to see the City bosses parting ways with Guardiola in the summer. However, if they chose to do so, it’s likely that Bayern would be at the forefront of clubs clamoring for the Catalan’s signature.