The Borussia Dortmund chief executive says it is “annoying” that the Bayern duo have spoken publicly about the attacker
Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke has hit out at Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and club legend Franz Beckenbauer for comments about Marco Reus.
Rummenigge has strongly insisted that Bayern could swoop in for the Dortmund winger if, as reported, his release clause drops to €25 million next summer.
Beckenbauer, meanwhile has said that if the 25-year-old doesn’t join Bayern next summer, he will end up at a team such as Manchester United or Real Madrid, adding Dortmund “won’t be able to hold onto him”.
However, Watzke has hit back at the pair, saying it is “annoying” that the Bavarian side seem to be making their interest in the attacker public.
“It’s a nice party game that everyone talks about it,” he told Bild. “It’s annoying! But gradually everyone will have something to say about it.”
Dortmund kick off the new Bundesliga season with a home match against Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday, a day after Bayern start the campaign against Wolfsburg.
The former Brazil attacker believes the German champions will improve with a more mobile forward who offers a greater contribution to the team
Former Bayern Munich striker Giovane Elber believes Robert Lewandowski is exactly the kind of player the Bavarians needed in order to challenge for top honours again in 2014-15.
The Poland star joined Bayern from Borussia Dortmund on a free transfer this summer and Elber is hugely impressed with the 25-year-old’s performances in pre-season.
“Mario Mandzukic scored a lot of goals for Bayern, but you must admit that Lewandowski’s goal in the Telekom Cup against Wolfsburg was simply stunning,” Elber told Spox.
“Bayern should be happy Lewandowski now plays in Munich and no longer for Dortmund. Bayern needed a player like him.”
Elber believes that the World Cup proved the importance of a more rounded, mobile striker in modern football – a role for which Lewandowski is perfectly suited.
“You can no longer achieve much with a striker who only waits for the ball in the area. We all saw that at the World Cup. Germany had a winning formula with Thomas Muller and Brazil did not with Fred,” he said.
“A modern striker should not only score goals, but also contribute to his side. He has to think and add something to the team. Lewandowski is perfect for that role.
“I am very curious to see whether Lewandowski can do as much for Bayern in the Champions League as he did for Dortmund.”
Lewandowski has netted 74 goals in the Bundesliga so far, while scoring 17 times in the Champions League for Dortmund.
The Bavarians have been heavily linked with Roma’s Mehdi Benatia but the ex-Barcelona coach has stressed a new centre-back is not a necessity despite Javi Martinez’s injury
Pep Guardiola is confident Bayern Munich have what it takes to cope with the absence of Javi Martinez even if they fail to sign a replacement.
The Spain international sustained a serious knee injury in Bayern’s 2-0 Supercup loss against Borussia Dortmund and will consequently be out of action for at least the remainder of 2014.
Guardiola admitted at the weekend that he would like to sign a replacement for Martinez, with Roma star Mehdi Benatia allegedly topping the former Barcelona coach’s wishlist.
However, the Morocco international’s hefty pricetag could prove to be too much of an obstacle and Guardiola has made it clear that he is happy to work with his current squad if no fresh blood comes in.
“It would be great if something’s possible on the transfer market,” Guardiola was quoted as saying by Bild.
“But if it’s not possible, so be it. We will just keep working with the players we already have.
“It’s not a problem for me.”
With Holger Badstuber, Dante and Jerome Boateng, Bayern have just three fit accomplished centre-backs in their squad following Martinez’s absence.
The ex-Bayern Munich man feels the attacking midfielder has been underwhelming in recent years, while Christoph Metzelder claims he “takes it easy” too often
Former Germany international Dietmar Hamann believes Bayern Munich star Mario Gotze is not getting the most out of his potential.
The 22-year-old joined Bayern from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2013, but failed to live up to the high expectations in his first season at the Bundesliga champions as he struggled for form and fitness.
Hamann has been less than impressed with Gotze’s performances for Bayern so far and feels the creative forward is already behind in his development.
“With the talent he has, Gotze should already have been at a different stage of his career,” Hamann told Sky.
“Gotze has to get going now. He has six or 12 more months to make that step up.
“You cannot just put in some half-hearted effort now and say that will you will give it your all next year. It doesn’t work that way.”
Former Dortmund defender Christoph Metzelder, meanwhile, was equally critical of Germany’s World Cup hero and has urged him to put in more hard work.
“Mario takes it easy a lot of times and often relies too much on his talent,” he added.
Gotze netted 10 goals in 27 Bundesliga appearances in 2013-14 and went on to score the crucial extra-time winner against Argentina in the World Cup final.
The former BVB centre-half says the Signal Iduna Park side will have to splash the cash to show their most prized asset that they can compete with Germany’s finest
Jurgen Kohler believes that Borussia Dortmund will have to spend big if they are to persuade Marco Reus that they can challenge Bayern Munich for the Bundesliga title on a regular basis.
The Germany international still has three years to run on his current contract with BVB but speculation is rife that their Bavarian rivals will make a move for the attacker next summer, with FCB president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge having gone public with his belief that the player’s release clause will drop to €25 million at the end of the 2014-15 season.
Dortmund have repeatedly reaffirmed their desire to hold onto Reus but Kohler believes that Bayern’s bigger budget could ultimately prove decisive.
“For Dortmund it is getting harder and harder to keep Marco,” the former BVB centre-half told Bild. “The club can only keep hold of Reus if they invest properly for the next four or five years.
“Bayern will not let up in their spending. At the end of the day, I’m sure it is a question of money.”
Kohler’s fellow ex-Dortmund defender, Christoph Metzelder, is also of the opinion that the Signal Iduna Park side will struggle to keep Reus happy if they cannot prove themselves capable of competing with Bayern.
“Marco has the personal ambition to win titles,” he told Bild. “I believe that this is possible with Borussia Dortmund.
“But, on the other hand, of course, everyone knows that if Bayern are really serious about him, it is difficult.”
The highly-rated 18-year-old has been linked with a move to the Bundesliga champions for much of the summer and the player is keen to join Pep Guardiola’s side
Borussia Monchengladbach wonderkid Sinan Kurt remains convinced that he can secure a move to Bayern Munich before the end of the transfer window. .
The potential transfer of the 18-year-old has caused friction between the two sides, with Gladbach vice president Rainer Bonhof convinced he will remain with Die Fohlen for next season.
Despite being under contract until 2016, Kurt, who is currently playing for Borussia’s U23 side, is still seeking a move to the Bundesliga champions in this window.
Bonhof stated in a recent interview: “We will hold on to the boy.”
But speaking to reporters in Germany, Kurt made his views on the move very clear: “I’ve made my decision in favour of Bayern, and nothing will change. I stand by it!
“I’ve always been honest with [Director of Sport] Max Eberl about my intentions. Therefore I have nothing to feel guilty about.
“I am convinced that it will still happen. These are now, of course, crucial weeks for me. I want to get my way there. I would not do this if I did not believe that this will be the case.”
Kurt has been courted by teams such as Arsenal and Liverpool in the past, and his playing style has been compared with Borussia Dortmund star Marco Reus.
The Bavarian icon feels that the 25-year-old, who has been heavily linked with a move to the Allianz Arena, would prove a fine addition to Pep Guardiola’s side
Franz Beckenbauer believes that Marco Reus will leave Borussia Dortmund for one of Europe’s giants in a year’s time and added that he would fit in well at Bayern Munich.
The Bavarians have been heavily linked with a move for the 25-year-old, with CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge strongly suggesting that the Bundesliga champions could look to activate his release clause, which will reportedly drop to €25 million next summer.
Beckenbauer certainly expects the Germany international to depart Signal Iduna Park sooner or later.
“I can imagine him at Bayern very well,” the former West Germany international told Bild.
“If you can get a player of his class, you need to try it. If he doesn’t go to Bayern in 2015, he will probably go to another big club like Real Madrid or Manchester United.
“Dortmund will probably not be able to hold on to him. I can understand why Dortmund don’t like discussion about Reus.”
Dortmund reacted angrily to Bayern’s comments about Reus’ release clause but Beckenbauer feels it was not too much of an issue.
“The amount of the release clause probably wasn’t a big secret,” he argued. “Every interested party probably knew it.”
The Germany international believes his side have work to do before the new Bundesliga season gets underway, with many players not 100 per cent recovered from Brazil 2014
Bayern Munich attacker Mario Gotze has admitted that his side are still not fully fit after their exploits in the World Cup this summer.
Several members of Pep Guardiola’s squad were involved in Brazil 2014 as Germany won the competition for the fourth time, while Arjen Robben starred for Netherlands, who finished third.
Just over a month on, Gotze, who netted his country’s winner in the final, is still looking to build up his fitness before Bayern’s Bundesliga campaign kicks off against Wolfsburg on Friday.
“We can be relatively pleased,” he told the club’s official website after a 4-1 victory over Preussen Munster in the DFB-Pokal.
“The eary goal was important. What mattered today was making the next round. We’ve reached a good level, but we know that we still have work to do on our fitness.”
Philipp Lahm echoed his team-mate’s belief that Pep Guardiola’s men are not yet in peak physical condition but was still delighted to progress in the Pokal.
“We were determined to make the next round,” the captain explained. “We’re obviously not at 100 percent yet, but we need matches to get there.”
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Bosna i Hercegovina
The Germany international, who had been out of action since December 2012, started Sunday’s DFB-Pokal win at Preussen Munster
Holger Badstuber has expressed his joy after making his first competitive appearance for Bayern Munich in almost two years.
The Germany international had been out of action since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in a Bundesliga clash with Borussia Dortmund on December 1, 2012.
However, Badstuber made his long-awaited comeback on Sunday, playing 79 minutes of Bayern’s DFB-Pokal first-round clash with Preussen Munster.
“First game. Done!!!,” the 25-year-old defender wrote on Twitter. “Thankful to be back on the field… It is simply the best!!!”
Badstuber’s return is a timely one for Bayern, with Javi Martinez having been ruled out of action with a knee injury sustained in Wednesday’s DFL-Supercup loss to Dortmund, and coach Pep Guardiola was in an upbeat frame of mind after his side saw off Preussen thanks to goals from Mario Gotze, Thomas Muller, David Alaba and Claudio Pizarro.
“Thank you to the people here,” the Catalan stated. “And congratulations to my players for their professionalism.”
Bayern begin the defence of their Bundesliga crown with a game against Wolfsburg at the Allianz Arena on Friday.