If there is one person who has to be in need of a little downtime, it is probably Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidžić. Even in his weary state, Brazzo sat down with kicker for an interview and hit on some very hot topics.
While it seems as if Salihamidžić handled the transfer window well, he acknowledged it was difficult due to COVID-19.
“Corona limited our transfer budget,” Salihamidžić told kicker. “Even if it is customary at FC Bayern that transfers fit into a reasonable overall economic framework, the challenge this time was greater than usual. FC Bayern does not go along with every crazy trend. The club wants to present its fans attractive and successful football at reasonable prices.”
While Bayern Munich might have been limited with resources, the club still went out offered quite a roster overhaul — even if it was not quite as much as manager Hansi Flick would have liked.
“It’s not just about the coach’s wishes,” said Salihamidžić. “It’s about all of us — coaches, players, management, board, the whole club — pursuing a common goal. We want to play attractive and successful football for our fans. That’s our job, and everyone has to do his best so that we have a team with which we can achieve the maximum. That’s teamwork and takes teamwork.”
With so many players coming in, Salihamidžić acknowledged that young players might have to accept lesser roles or even take a turn with Bayern Munich II.
“With the schedule we have, every young player should get his minutes, but the decision is of course made by the coach,” Salihamidžić remarked. “The fact is, we have already played 60 games this year and our national players still have 26 games until Christmas. Then there will be the European Championship and the World Cup in 2022. I think the young players need minutes and will have to play — some or all of them sometimes with the U23s, who have their own ambitions in the third division.”
One of the late stories of the transfer window was Bayern Munich’s inability to find a good loan assignment for reserve striker Joshua Zirkzee. Zirkzee’s stock seems to have taken a bit of hit over the last few months, but it does not mean that the Bavarians have given up on him.
“He’s stayIng, he will develop and learn,” Salihamidžić said. “There has to be a certain amount of competition in the squad. Now Joshua has to show that he has a mentality. He knows that we are asking him to fight even more. And if it fits, he will play.”
The other late-breaking hot news was Bayern Munich’s Tiago Dantas, but Salihamidžić assured kicker that the 19-year-old was targeted for Bayern Munich II.
Overall, Salihamidžić indicated that Bayern is happy with its haul during this window and just wanted to remind everyone that the club did some heavy lifting earlier in the summer.
“We are satisfied,” Salihamidžić said. “The tight schedule and the loss of many players from last season made it necessary to expand the squad both in terms of quality and depth. Some people also forgot that we secured (Alexander) Nübel, (Tanguy) Kouassi and (Leroy) Sané by July.”
If you want Brazzo’s thoughts on some of the other acquisition the club made, here you go.
“Roca has a very strong mentality. A great guy with a very high level of self-motivation. We talked to him a lot in 2019, we know him well. He will do a good job: A fine footballer with a really good passing game and knows how to escape tight situations well. His development is not yet complete. He is still young, he has to develop further with us, he has to understand and promote our football.”
“We have known him for a long time. He is an excellent footballer, an attacking defender, a steady nature, but a gamer on the pitch: fast, aggressive, agile. He will liven up our game. If he plays what he can, he will help us a lot. We will enjoy having him here.”
“Thanks to him, we are even stronger on the offensive outside positions than last season: two left-footers, two right-footers, four players with different profiles who are strong at offensive dribbling. That will make us unpredictable.”
Brazzo killed off the rumors that the squad made a pitch for the club to bring back Costa:
“This is a fairy tale. At Bayern, tasks and competencies have been clearly distributed for decades: the team plays football, the management takes care of the squad. Squad planning is not the team’s job.”
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting
“He’s an awesome guy and a very good character.”