The Roten legend plays down comparisons with illustrious sides of the past, but remains confident of further success both in Germany and Europe for the Bavarians
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has spoken of his belief that Bayern Munich will soon win another Champions League and give the current crop of players the chance to be considered club greats.
The 57-year-old former striker scored 181 times in 356 appearances for the Bavarian outfit and, though cautious about comparing Jupp Heynckes’ team to previous sides, he expressed his optimism about what the club could achieve in the near future.
“I read a beautiful Chinese proverb,” the Bayern CEO stated in an interview with Bild. “If something is going to happen, then do not talk about it. Because it is difficult to collect spilled water again.
“Bayern have fortunately been a success story since the 70s. The generation of [Franz] Beckenbauer, [Gerd] Muller, [Sepp] Maier and so on has built the road on which we travel today.
“The 70s team was iconic. I think our current team is on the right track but you have to first win great titles.
Last year [losing the Champions League final to Chelsea at their own stadium] sting still sits deep.”
Die Roten currently hold a 14-point lead in the Bundesliga ahead of their trip to Hoffenheim, but Rummenigge was keen to stress that the club are not taking anything for granted.
“We are optimistic and hopeful that with the big lead we have we will become German champions,” he continued.
“But mathematically we are neither champions nor cup winners. Borussia Dortmund will continue to remain our biggest rival. They have good management, a good coach and a good team.
“A huge fight for prestige has developed and maybe it will continue in the Champions League.
“I chuckled,” he added when asked about Jurgen Klopp’s complaints over his side’s defeat in Wednesday’s DFB-Pokal quarter-final.
“We were also bitter last year after the cup final defeat in Berlin [a 5-2 loss to the Borussians]. We sat there like idiots at a banquet. But you have to show respect. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. They should not be ashamed – there’s no shame in losing 1-0 in Munich.”
Bayern are enjoying a successful season and currently sit on top of the league with 60 points from 23 games and are on track to win an illusive treble if they continue to thrive in the DFB-Pokal and in Europe.