In a recent, lengthy interview with FCBayern.com, club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge reflected upon Bayern Munich’s summer transfer business. He also stressed the importance of having some of the young players in the squad play for the reserves in the 3. Liga where they can continue to gain valuable playing experience.
During the summer transfer window, Bayern saw Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben, Rafinha, James Rodriguez, Renato Sanches, and Mats Hummels depart the club while they welcomed in new signees Benjamin Pavard, Lucas Hernandez, Fiete Arp, Philippe Coutinho, Ivan Perisic, and Mickael Cuisance. While both Arp and Cuisance have seen few minutes for the first team, the quartet of Pavard, Hernandez, Coutinho and Perisic have all made their presence felt with their performances thus far.
Rummenigge specifically highlighted the impact Coutinho has made, especially with his linkup play with Robert Lewandowski:
Franck Ribéry and Arjen Robben in particular were important players for us, but we also shouldn’t forget the others with whom we won the double last season. We can be very satisfied with our transfer business and new signings, though. Philippe Coutinho obviously stands out, he’s world-class calibre and you can see that clearly. He makes the difference and he’s found the perfect partner in Robert Lewandowski. We can expect a lot from those two in the future.
Perisic, he added, has also impressed, while he also feels the best is yet to come from the French defensive duo of Pavard and Hernandez:
Ivan Perišić has also fully lived up to expectations, as have the two French World Cup winners we signed. I like Benjamin Pavard a lot because he’s a really good player and a modest person. Lucas Hernández was the most expensive signing in Bayern’s history. I think the best is still to come from him. We mustn’t forget that he’s just come back from an injury lay-off of around five months.
By contrast, some of the young players on the squad have been gaining valuable experience playing with Bayern’s reserves in the 3. Liga. Arp and Cuisance, Rummenigge said, are both promising talents. Spots 17-20 in the first team, Rummenigge explained, are spots that Bayern want to fill with youngsters who will receive a chance to play consistently. Having some of those players develop with the reserves in the 3. Liga helps this plan become a reality:
Then there are Michaël Cuisance and Fiete Arp, who are both promising talents. In the future, we want to fill places 17-20 in the squad with youngsters who have a chance of playing fairly regularly. There are two ways: one is via the reserves, as we saw last weekend. Davies and Cuisance were in the first-team squad on Saturday and then on Sunday they both played an important part in the reserves’ win over FC Ingolstadt, who were playing in the Bundesliga not long ago. Our young talents are challenged significantly more in the third division than they are in the Bavarian regional league. The second way, as we’ve done with a few players, is selling them but with a buy-back option. They’re all now in the Bundesliga or Bundesliga 2, and we have to watch them.
The quality of Bayern’s first-team squad makes it all the more crucial for the fringe players to play as much as they can in the lower divisions, Rummenigge emphasized:
They’re young talents and it’s important for them to be playing regularly as that’s the only way they’ll develop. Given the quality of our first-team squad, it’s not easy. It’s therefore crucial that we’re playing in the third division but if someone has the ability to play in the first or second division, we shouldn’t deny him that. We should find a possible solution, and that’s what we did in the summer.