In a recent interview on the Sportschau Club, Jerome Boateng talked about the difficult spell he had at Bayern Munich under Niko Kovac and also said that he’s still open for a potential return to the German National Team. Hindsight is always 20/20, but everything that’s happened since Kovac’s departure, for the most part, has been positive for Boateng as he’s been a regular feature under Hansi Flick and an integral part of Bayern’s back line.
By the end of the end of the 2018/19 season when Bayern had secured the domestic double, it looked all but certain that Boateng would be on his way out of the lcub during the summer transfer window. It was telling that he was the first one to leave the Allianz Arena after Bayern’s 5-1, title-clinching win over Eintracht Frankfurt and he also wasn’t present at the trophy celebration in Marienplatz. He was a point where he felt everything was against him and that he didn’t have a future at the club. Even Uli Hoeness at one point during that season had strongly recommended he find a different club to play for. In retrospect, I would certainly have done it differently. It was difficult for people to judge what was wrong with me. I was disappointed and very thoughtful,” Boateng said looking back at that time period.
Under Kovac, Boateng was not a regular starter and he felt that the communication from the Croatian manager could’ve been far better. He felt that he was never really told why he wasn’t playing as much as he would’ve liked or felt he deserved. “I would have liked to have dealt with the manager and had an honest conversation,” Boateng said of Kovac. Kovac had started to show a prefernce to play the center back pairing of Mats Hummels and Niklas Sule without really giving much of an explanation to Boateng.
By stark contract, Boateng has been a key man for Flick in Bayern’s defense. He said that Flick has a special gift when it comes to having the right instincts with his players: “FC Bayern are lucky to have such an outstanding coach - with so much specialist knowledge, but also with a sure instinct for the players,” he explained.
It’s been about 21 months since Boateng was dropped from the German National Team by Joachim Low along with Hummels and Thomas Muller. Low has really stuck to his guns on wanting to try and emphasize growth from the younger players in the German squad, but he’s received a great deal of criticism for being reluctant to entertain the idea of bringing Boateng, Hummels, and/or Muller back. Diplomatically, Boateng said that Low’s decision to drop him was “absolutely legitimate,” but he said he would 100% be up to the task if Low were to ever change his mind. “If I’m asked, I’m absolutely open to it. Playing for Germany was always the greatest,” he said.