Bayern Munich coach Niko Kovac admitted that he let his excitement over the possibility that Manchester City’s Leroy Sane might join the Bavarians get the better of him. Speaking to ZDF (as captured by Bild reporter Tobias Altschäffl), Kovac explained that he realized his comments went too far and detailed what measures he took to make amends:
Kovac im @ZDF: „Ich habe mit Pep gesprochen und mich für meine Aussage (zu Sane) entschuldigt. Ich war zu offensiv, werde mich künftig zurückhalten. Ich möchte mich auch beim Klub (City) entschuldigen.“ #fcbayern #sané @BILD_Bayern @SPORTBILD @BILD_Sport— Tobias Altschäffl (@altobelli13) July 30, 2019
I spoke with Pep (Guardiola) and apologized for my remark. I was too offensive, I’ll restrain myself in the future. I’d also like to apologize to the club (City).
While apologetic, Kovac also stuck to his guns and said he was only telling the truth about what was going on, which might cause some issues internally:
Kovac doubling down. "I always speak the truth. What I said (about Sané) was absolutely right and is verified." This is all heading for an almighty bust-up... https://t.co/3LXgT7octw— Raphael Honigstein (@honigstein) July 30, 2019
Unwittingly, Kovac’s comments put some undue pressure on Bayern front office officials to get a deal done, while also irritating Manchester City. It was a true, double-whammy of a gaffe by Kovac.
Kovac might not have intended to initiate any controversy, but the quote below rubbed both Manchester officials and fans the wrong way:
Our leadership is very engaged in the situation there. I’m confident and assume that we will get him.
Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge was blunt when asked about the controversy as he issued the following terse statement (as featured in the tweet below): “I didn’t like [Kovac’s] statement about Sané.”
Kovac über die Rummenigge-Watsch („Aussage hat zu Sané hat mir nicht gefallen“) im @ZDF: „Habe mit Pep gesprochen und mich entschuldigt. Die Welt dreht sich weiter!“— Henning Feindt (@Karlo_Kolumna) July 30, 2019
Schön was los für so ein Testspiel! #Audicup #FCBFEN
Poor Niko seems to be digging himself a hole internally at Bayern, but he also indicated that Serge Gnabry’s status was nothing serious. The move to remove Gnabry from Bayern’s 6-1 win over Fenerbahce was more precautionary than anything as noted in the tweet below: