Earlier today, Oliver Kahn and Bayern Munich President Herbert Hainer gave a press conference to present Kahn formally as a member of the club’s executive board. Among a bevvy of topics discussed, Kahn outlined his vision for Bayern’s transfer policies, youth development, and the Bayern brand as a whole (Sport1).
The famously fiery former goal-keeper began by assuring the audience that he would not let his emotions get in the way of making the right decisions for the club:
Emotion is very important. In the business world, however, emotionality is not necessarily the best idea. I will not make a slide-tackle through the meeting room. Things have changed, after all.
When Hainer and Kahn were asked if they would form a partnership like that between Uli Hoeness and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Kahn said that everyone’s voice would still be heard when important decisions for the club need to be made, but — perhaps alluding to the recent leak of Manuel Neuer’s contract negotiations — he urged that the discussions be kept confidential:
You should discuss seriously, but I think it’s important to do that internally. Times have changed; you have to let many opinions factor in. Here, everyone is asked to take responsibility. It wouldn’t be bad if the discussion stays internal — which is not entirely easy at Bayern.
As it stands, sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic spearheads Bayern’s transfer plans. He was a major reason why Alphonso Davies decided to join Bayern from the Vancouver Whitecaps in the MLS. Moving forward, Kahn said that he plans on stepping in when he can regarding transfers in collaboration with Salihamidzic and the rest of Bayern’s scouting and analysis team:
First of all, that is the responsibility of Hasan Salihamidzic. I see myself as a team player, but of course I’ll bring my experience to bear. There is a lot of knowledge at FC Bayern, with Hasan, with scouting, with the analysis team. This knowledge has to be brought together.
Bayern has always prided themselves on strengthening their youth development programs in order the produce talents that eventually work their way into the senior squads. Kahn can already see that Bayern is on the right path in that respect and he intends to see that process continue:
We have made it our goal here to be the absolute best. You can see the first signs that young players are again being brought up to the team, so that icons can be created.
Having played for Bayern for most of his career and having worked extensively with ZDF covering highlights for Bayern matches, Kahn is eager to start this new challenge in a new role:
The club’s DNA is so deep in one that you basically never can leave the club. I was at all the highlights of FC Bayern as an expert for ZDF. It’s a very special challenge to continue this success story, and perhaps even add to it. That is quite appealing.
Kahn’s first official act just hours after the press conference was to travel to Doha to meet the squad at their winter training camp and acquaint himself with the players and coaching staff.