At a press conference featuring president Uli Hoeness, chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic and head coach Niko Kovac, the club took a clear stand.
To summarise this press conference so far:
Bayern’s old guard (Neuer, Boateng, Ribéry, Robben, Müller etc.) have achieved so much in their careers, how dare they be criticised by anyone for sub-par performances…
— Jordan Maciel (@UEFAcomJordanM) October 19, 2018
The trio also took the opportunity to confirm their ongoing support for Kovac after poor recent results have led to seemingly wrongful claims that the Croatian could be sacked.
“I was accused of not publicly defending Niko Kovac. For that I have to clarify something. Why? We appreciate his work. We do not have to publicly back ourselves. This is disrespectful and outrageous, what happens here. This club will now unite in public again,” Hoeness is quoted as saying by Goal.
On the subject of fighting untruths in the media, the president added, “I think it’s about time that the biggest club in Germany takes a clear stance on this issue.”
Rummenigge, who addressed criticism directed at Manuel Neuer, Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng, stated, “We at Bayern have decided that we will no longer accept this recent kind of media coverage.”
Salihamidzic described the recent criticism as ‘unacceptable’, explaining, “Our players are self-critical. Questioning the work of the entire club so quickly is not acceptable. I will always defend my players and my coach.”
The bold step to address the issue of the media so head on in such a clear and public manner has been met with bewilderment and criticism.
talkSPORT and ESPN journalist Matt Scott tweeted, “Indignation at media criticism from a demonstrably underperforming side that has grown accustomed to winning. The extraordinary entitlement of Bayern Munich.
“Now they’re going to sue you if they don’t like what you write! This is breathtaking.”