Former Bayern Munich manager, Jupp Heynckes, has expressed his disbelief in Bastian Schweinsteiger’s move to Manchester United by insisting that the German champions will never have another player of his quality.
The 70 year who guided Bayern to the long-awaited and historic triple in 2013 before retiring as one of the most successful managers in the clubs 115 year old history, also feels that the club are losing an icon and the “heartbeat” of the team.
Schweinsteiger, who won 20 trophies during his 17 year stay at the Bavarian giants including eight Bundesliga and seven DFB Pokal titles undertook a medical at Manchester United’s training complex at Carrington, and is expected to finalise a three-year deal believed to be in the region of £15 million later this afternoon.
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Indeed, this came after the Germany captain refused a new deal put forward to him last week by Bayern, with the 30 year old basing his decision to re-join forces with Louis Van Gaal as a “fresh start” and a “new opportunity.”
Whilst Germany manager Joachim Low has heralded his skippers decision as one which could help him to find his best form ahead of Euro 2016, which is set to take place in France next year, several other former managers, players and pundits including Heynckes have swayed in the other direction.
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Speaking to German magazine Kicker, the former Bayern and Real Madrid manager said: “Bastian was the soul and the heartbeat of the team. He did everything for the team and not for himself. There will never be another player like him again at Bayern.”
Heynckes who was named as the FIFA World Coach of the Year for 2013 also believes that Schweinsteiger belongs in the same category as other Bayern greats such as Franz Beckenbauer and Gerd Müller, whilst also insisting that the whole of German people will miss the iconic midfielder.
The former West Germany international went on to say: “Above all Bastian is an icon and a figure of identity. Bastian Schweinsteiger belongs to same category as Franz Beckenbauer and Gerd Müller. The Bundesliga and the whole of German football are going to miss him.”
Like Schweinsteiger, Beckenbauer also started his career in Bayern’s youth set-up before going on to make 499 appearances for the German champions in an 18 year period between 1959-1977.
Bad move, my friend
Indeed, the “Kaiser” also decided to spread his wings and fly away from the nest by going on to play for both the New York Cosmos and Hamburg before retiring six years later at the ripe age of 37.
However, Beckenbauer who led West Germany to World Cup glory at Italia 1990 has expressed his concern over Schweinsteiger’s move to a league which he feels is far more demanding than the Bundesliga.
Beckenbauer also fears that the Kolbermoor-born midfielder will have to play better than he has done in recent years at Bayern, whilst also expressing that it might have been wiser for the Germany international to follow in his foot-steps by forcing through a move to the MLS instead.
The 69 year old German guru also told Kicker: “He is brave in his age to make this move. In England he will have to do more than he has done at Bayern. In England he will have to hit the ground running. A move to America would have been more understandable from my point of view.”