Hoeness reveals Wenger talks

The Arsenal manager has been a frequent target for the German side over the years, with the Gunners preparing for the Champions League last 16 return leg in Bavaria on Wednesday

Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has revealed that the German club have repeatedly attempted to hire Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger over the years.

The news comes as Arsenal are preparing for the second leg of their Champions League last 16 tie with Bayern at the Allianz Arena, with the Gunners looking to overturn a 3-1 deficit.

With the north London club off the pace in the league and out of the FA Cup, Wenger now looks set to preside over his eighth-straight trophyless season at Arsenal.

However, Hoeness has been full of praise for the Frenchman and has admitted the club have repeatedly tried to lure Frenchman in the past.

“We did try to get him at Bayern Munich a few times,” he told The Sun.

“Even before he went to Japan, Franz Beckenbauer and I went to Nice and discussed with him and everything was clear, but then at the end of the day he decided to go to Japan.

“We were very surprised. From Japan he went to Arsenal and over the years, whenever we were looking for a new coach, Wenger was always one we considered.

“He’s a very serious person, very strong and has a very good idea about the game. There have been a few moments where we have discussed his name over the years.

“He has always remained loyal to Arsenal which is fantastic behaviour. But it is true we wanted him at Bayern a few times.”

'Guardiola will bring Messi & Ronaldo to Bayern!' – Boris Becker

The former tennis star is looking forward to the former Barcelona coach joining his boyhood club and joked that the Liga stars will want to follow him to Germany

Former tennis star Boris Becker has joked that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will want to join Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich next season.

The 45-year-old has supported the Bavarians for his whole life and is excited to see how the former Barcelona coach fares at the Allianz Arena, but warned him that Jupp Heynckes will be a tough act to follow.

“I am very happy with the signing of Pep Guardiola,” the six-time Grand Slam winner told Mundo Deportivo.

“With his arrival, Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will want to come. One would play on the left and one on the right!

“Pep is the best coach in the world but I was a little surprised to hear he chose Bayern. It will be a challenge for Guardiola.

“Heynckes can win it all, the Champions League, the league of course, and the DFB-Pokal.”

Bayern currently sit 20 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga, are in the Pokal semi-finals and have a 3-1 first leg lead over Arsenal in the last 16 of the Champions League.

I was scared before Bayern move, says Martinez

The Spain international was initially worried about leaving his homeland for Germany, but is delighted with the way things have gone since.

Javi Martinez says he has settled well at Bayern Munich since his arrival at the club at the beginning of the season, despite having fears over the move.

The Spain international arrived in Bavaria in August for a €40 million fee, and although he was insecure at first, he is happy with the way life has gone for him at the Allianz Arena.

“I have adapted well because people have been very welcoming,” the 24-year-old told Uefa.com.

“I was scared to come to a new city, with a new language, but I feel really good here. My team-mates have helped me integrate so well, it’s as if I have already been with them a long time.”

Roja coach Vicente del Bosque recently lauded Martinez’s leadership skills, and the 24-year-old revealed his pride at being praised by the national team boss.

“For the Spain coach to say that makes you feel fantastic. I always try to lift my team-mates and give them energy,” he continued.

“I hope I can be half as good as Patrick Vieira, because for me he has always been an idol, a role model – a football great. Mind you, he is Vieira and I’m Javi – we are different too.”

Martinez is currently preparing for the second leg of his side’s Champions-League last-16 clash with Arsenal on Wednesday.

Hoeness criticises money-driven Manchester United owners

The German side’s president believes owners should have an emotional attachment to the club, rather than just seek the financial gains, using the Glazer family as an example

Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has criticised football owners who have no emotional attachment to their club and are just driven by money, using the Glazer family and their ownership of Manchester United as an example.

Hoeness was a success at Bayern as a player, winning three Bundesliga titles before becoming their president, and has blasted United’s American ownership for not caring enough about the club.

“At Bayern we don’t look always for short-term success. I’ve won about 20 titles,” Hoeness told The Sun.

“To win the 21st title I’ll not sell out the club. But if somebody comes in who’s won nothing, he wants to win quickly and under this pressure he makes decisions which can be very difficult.

“I do not compare ourselves to United for instance which is a very big club and famous and one I admire greatly. But Mr Glazer didn’t know where Manchester was 20 years ago. He doesn’t do it because he loves United. He wants to make money.

“Football, you do with your heart. I have no problem with people from Arabia or Russia but they should have a connection to the club, from the heart.”

Hoeness believes the German game, which is admired by many, is different to that in England and much is down to the cheaper ticket prices which lead to higher average attendances.

He explained: “I only want to have big sporting success on a sound economic basis. It’s no fun to win the championship or Champions League with a £50-£60 million loss.

“The 12,000 cheap tickets are for young people and the people who cannot afford it otherwise. Football must always be affordable.

“When you only pay €15 [£12] you can’t say ‘I hate these millionaires’ because you cannot finance the millionaires with €15. The €15 tickets are standing seats behind the goals. Our most expensive season ticket is around €800 [£697].”

Hoeness, however, praised Arsenal, who meet Bayern Munich in the second leg of their last 16 Champions League tie on Wednesday, for their financial model.

“I’ve a very good opinion about Arsenal’s people and how they think. They do it correctly,” he added.

“At the moment, OK, they have some problems in the squad but in their financial behaviour they are correct.

“If Mr Kroenke says, ‘I want to make money’ then he has to find people who love the club. Arsene Wenger for a long time has been a good icon for the club. He has done a great job.”

Ribery ruled out of Arsenal clash

The Bavarian powerhouse will be without the France winger in Wednesday’s match as they aim to book their place in the quarter-finals

Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes will have to do without the services of Franck Ribery for the second-leg of their last-16 Champions League clash with Arsenal.

The France international featured for the full 90 minutes in Bayern’s 3-2 Bundesliga win over Fortuna Dusseldorf at the weekend and even scored the equaliser to make it 2-2 in the 73rd minute.

Nevertheless, he complained about pain in his left ankle after the match, and Bayern have now confirmed that he will not be match fit in time for Wednesday’s clash with the Gunners.

Ribery’s injury is yet another blow for Heynckes, who will also be without Bastian Schweinsteiger and Jerome Boateng due to suspension.

Bayern defend a 3-1 lead from the first leg at the Emirates Stadium.