It is not easy to impress Bayern Munich CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, but the 65-year-old club legend can recall a moment when he was a bit awestruck.
“In 1974, I came to Bayern from Lippstadt as an 18-year-old and was in the dressing room early on for my first training session. Der Kaiser came in last. I went up to him and said: ‘Hello Mr. Beckenbauer, may I introduce myself? I’m Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and I’m looking forward to training with you and maybe even playing,” said Rummenigge to Bild.
At that point, Rummenigge did not even know how Franz Beckenbauer would react, but Der Kaiser put the youngster at ease.
“He looked astonished and just said: ‘Call me Franz.’ At that time he was my captain, later he was my team boss at the 1986 World Cup, then president and chairman of the supervisory board,” said Rummenigge. “An impressive personality and the best Bayern ambassador of all time.”
As hard as it is to think that anyone could live up to Beckenbauer’s overall impact in Bavaria, Rummenigge might have been able to top the man who once left him in complete awe.