More than a year since that statement by then Bayern Munich chairman Uli Honess suggesting Jerome Boateng move on from Bayern, a different player now plays in his shoes. One that has taken in trust from Headcoach Hansi Flick and worked his rear-end off to rise again as one of the best at his craft. A phenomenal treble season later, it now looks like he might extend his stay at the Allianz Arena beyond 2021 .
In an interview with SPORT1, Boateng’s agent Damir Smoljan of LIAN sports, had this to say about the player’s future: “We are open to contract negotiations. The future is exciting. We look forward to talking to Bayern. Jérôme feels incredibly comfortable here. The team is incredibly focused and professional. All of this fits Jérôme.”
Hansi Flick played a big part in Boateng’s resurgence. Since his takeover in November 2019, Flick had instructed Boateng to work on his fitness, which is exactly what the 32 year-old did. Over the winter break in 2019, Boateng put his body through the wringer. Working with yoga and fitness trainers he shed several kilos while improving his fitness levels. “If you fall down and come back like that, that’s the difference between a top player and a top-top player. Few players his age can torture their bodies like this to get back to that level. Hats off to you, Jérôme ”, says Smoljan and adds:“ I am very proud to work with such a professional and quality person. I have seldom met such a polite footballer as him. He is very inspiring and a great family man.”
The fruits of all that hard work were visible in the following Rückrunde. Boateng was of significant value when Bayern had to tide through an injury crisis in defense. His partnership with David Alaba gave Bayern a solid defensive wall while also adding another dimension in attack and Boa rewarded Hansi’s trust with his excellent performances to secure the treble.
In mid-August Boateng highlighted the importance of that connection between the player and the coach saying, “It is important that you have the trust of the coach, have fun with football, and feel comfortable. That has all been given to me. I can show what I can do again. I enjoy every second and every trip with FC Bayern. It’s an incredibly great feeling. It’s fun to be part of FC Bayern.”
The importance of having an experienced defensive leader back to playing at his best and one that is familiar with the style of the club while also being happy to extend his stay cannot be overstated. The Bayern brass should find this extension a no brainer.