Julian Nagelsmann had an up-and-down first season in Bavarian red, and the first half of his second season has been an eventful one, to say the least — running a full gamut of highs and lows, from soaring confidence to crushing uncertainty. But according to club president Herbert Hainer, the Bayern Munich coach couldn’t have impressed more in year two.
“Highly professional, very focused and always ready for the next level,” Hainer said of Nagelsmann in an interview for FCBayern.com. “In his second year with us, he’s shown what kind of personality he has. He has analyzed exactly what needs to be optimized, had many discussions with Oliver Kahn and Hasan Salihamidžic — and then together we shifted up a gear by winning the 12 games before the World Cup apart from the last-minute 2-2 in Dortmund.
“Julian Nagelsmann knows what makes FC Bayern tick. He’s followed this club from an early age and wants to achieve great things here. With him, anything is possible, even if winning the Champions League is not something you can plan, of course.”
But as much as the Bavarians ended the Hinrunde on a tear, Hainer urged a re-focus and a reset as the second half of the season approaches.
“It’s important that everyone realizes that last autumn’s successes won’t count for anything in the spring,” Hainer concluded. “One lesson for our players from being knocked out in the quarter-finals of the Champions League last season must be that you can’t let up for one second at the absolute top level. Everyone is aware of that.”
With injuries and new arrivals in the transfer window — plus an eventful World Cup in between — much has happened since the Winterpause began. It’s not quite a clean slate, but the tale of the year will be defined by its end and not its beginning. What kind of story will Bayern Munich write?