Oliver Kahn, former Bayern Munich and German national team keeper, sat down for an interview with DAZN and SPOX. He spoke about Niko Kovac, Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben, and what comes next for Bayern when the two legendary players leave.
Kahn spoke very sympathetically of Kovac. When asked how he rated Bayern’s title-winning season and the part that Niko Kovac had played in it, Kahn was very supportive of what the coach was able to do in his first year in Munich. He said,
Niko Kovac arrived in a very difficult situation. Some players, like Robben and Ribery, were already at a certain age. Then beforehand there was also the catastrophic World Cup in Russia with the German group-stage exit, after which none of the national players had any desire for soccer. On top of that, there were the injuries and then a new manager as well. Such a situation is not easy to cope with. The fact that Niko Kovac managed to win the title and also has a chance to win the DFB-Pokal — if you look the results alone — it is definitely anything but bad.
This is a huge vote of confidence for Kovac. With some of the top brass at Bayern wavering on whether to bring Kovac back, Kahn’s is a good vote of confidence to have. Although he holds no official position in the club yet, all signs point to him joining the front office in 2020.
As many have over the last few weeks, Kahn also spoke about Ribery and Robben. He was first asked about Robben. He said,
He is already a type of Bayern legend. He has scored many important goals and played a big part in Bayern accomplishing something so great, namely winning the Bundesliga seven times in a row. And obviously there is the Champions League in 2013, as well as many other titles.
He also had great things to say about the other half of Robbery, Franck Ribery:
He has essentially the same qualities as Arjen Robben. Maybe a little more agressive, but also technically a little better. I believe that FC Bayern will tremendously miss these two. Not only their quality, but also as great guys.
Kahn was also asked whether Serge Gnabry and Kingsley Coman are ready to follow in the footsteps of Robben and Ribery. Kahn believes that both players have developed greatly since coming to the team. He also said that it is hard when you have two great players in front of you, but now that both of them are leaving, Gnabry and Coman will feel more responsibility. Kahn believes that will push them even further forward.
With Kahn behind him, a Bayern win in Berlin this weekend should solidify Kovac’s position in Munich. It would also send our legends off with yet another title to add to their illustrious resume.