Bayern Munich Defender Joshua Kimmich Credits Pep Guardiola for His Impressive Development

?Bayern Munich defender Joshua Kimmich has revealed how praise from former manager Pep Guardiola played a huge part in his emergence as one of the world’s finest right backs.

Signed by the Spaniard in 2015, Kimmich has developed into a crucial player for the Bundesliga giants. Shortly after his arrival, he was passionately spoken to by Guardiola on the pitch following a 0-0 draw with Borussia Dortmund, in a moment which was widely feared to be a public humiliation for the youngster, only for the pair to embrace after all was said and done.

Borussia Dortmund v FC Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga

In an interview with ?The Daily Mail, Kimmich admitted he has fond memories of this moment, saying: “I enjoyed it. When someone is that emotional, this intensity for the game, this love for the game, I think that’s good. 

“When you know how he is, his type of being coach, his style of being coach, as a player you think it’s 100 per cent natural.”

The 23-year-old then went on to discuss his experiences of working under the current ?Manchester City manager. He said: “At RB Leipzig, we nearly only had a concept against the ball and now it was completely different as we had 70 per cent possession.

FC Bayern Muenchen v Ajax - UEFA Champions League Group E

“I played different positions. With Pep, it’s really important to know where team-mates are in every moment and also where the opponents are. 

“So you learn and get another feeling of the space. You know every time you get the ball I can pass it to this player and this player. 

“You know where your team-mates are, in which space. And so you think a bit different about the whole game of football.”

In his three years in Munich, Kimmich has made an impressive 134 appearances for the club. He is one of Bayern’s most important players, and has played every minute of his side’s matches this season, including cup matches and Champions League ties.

Let’

Report Claims Bayern Munich Players Doubt Under Fire Manager Niko Kovac Amid Turbulent Start

Bayern Munich manager Niko Kova? has reportedly landed himself in a much more perilous position in Bavaria than the club are letting on and is even in danger of losing the dressing room.

The Croatian’s appointment at the Allianz Arena during the summer was unusual. Bayern Munich hadn’t appointed someone with a track record of success, like Carlo Ancelotti or Pep Guardiola in previous years, nor any number of Germany’s managerial wonderkids – notably Julian Nagelsmann, who will now join RB Leipzig in 2019.

Hertha BSC v FC Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga

Two things that Kova?’s appointment did bring were excitement and uncertainty in equal measure. He had a reputation for succeeding with Germany’s underdogs, and Bayern Munich’s impressive start to the season suggested that the 46-year-old wouldn’t struggle to adapt to life with the reigning champions.

After failing to win each of their last four games, however, Kova? has come under intense scrutiny. While Bayern Munich are publicly backing the Croatian, ESPN claims that senior players already have doubts over their manager’s credentials moving forward.

Even some of Bayern Munich’s younger players have held internal talks to vent their frustrations at Kova?, who has kept the faith with the likes of Arjen Robben (34) and Franck Ribéry (35) in big games this season.

Kova? has been good on fitness levels and defensive organisation but the players expected solutions up front,” a source told ESPN. “And they got nothing.”

Although Bayern Munich will continue to support their manager, especially as Kova? remains a largely popular figure in Bavaria, these reports suggest that their results and one-dimensional attacking performances have to improve straight away.

Schalke 04 v Bayern Munchen - German Bundesliga

The Reds can start to get their season back on track when they travel to VfL Wolfsburg after the international break, with a Champions League trip to Athens coming just three days later, but all eyes will be on Der Klassiker on November 10 when Bayern Munich can really make a statement of intent against Borussia Dortmund.

Let’

Arsenal Increase Interest in Lille Winger Nicolas Pepe But Face Competition From European Giants

Arsenal and Bayern Munich have ‘intensified’ their interest in LOSC Lille star Nicolas Pépé ahead of the January transfer window, according to reports.

The 23-year-old has been in fine form this season and has already been directly involved in 12 goals in Ligue 1, helping his side climb up to second place in the table behind only Paris Saint-Germain.

FBL-FRA-LIGUE1-LILLE-METZ

Pépé’s form has unsurprisingly caught the eye of some of the biggest clubs across Europe. As things stand, both Arsenal and Bayern Munich are leading the race for his signature, according to Mundo Deportivo (via Sport Witness), who also talk of Barcelona’s interest in the winger.

The Ivory Coast international, who alongside Jonathan Bamba is the star of Lille’s current side, is expected to cost suitors close to €30m, although Les Dogues could up their valuation and let a bidding war ensue for the forward.

It was expected that Pépé would be the subject of a number of high-profile bids during the January transfer window. However, he recently told Telefoot that he will not be leaving the Stade Pierre-Mauroy before the end of this season.

The France-born winger first made a name for himself in Ligue 1 during a two-year spell with SCO Angers. Pépé would go on to make 47 appearances for the club, scoring three goals and claiming two assists.

FBL-FRA-LIGUE1-LILLE-MARSEILLE

Following a £9m move to Lille, Pépé has already matched the same number of appearances as he did with his former side Angers. However, the forward’s return in front of goal has changed drastically, scoring 20 times and registering 11 assists in just over a year.

Let’

Bayern Munich Considering Move for Serie A Star as Long-Term Replacement for Robert Lewandowski

German giants Bayern Munich have been linked with a January move for Genoa striker Krzysztof Piatek.

CalcioMercato report that the Polish forward is being eyed as the long-term replacement for his countryman Robert Lewandowski, with club president Uli Hoeness said to be a huge admirer of the Genoa star. 

Piatek has scored 13 goals in just nine outings for the Serie A side this season in all competitions, and was on target for his country on Thursday as they lost 3-2 to reigning European champions Portugal.

CalcioMercato report that Bayern are facing serious competition for Piatek’s signature in the form of Barcelona and Chelsea, but Borussia Dortmund are said to be the closest to signing him.

The player signed a four-year deal with Genoa following his move from Polish side Cracovia in the summer, and has since had to play down the comparisons to Lewandowski while dismissing the links abroad.

“That start of the season has been good, but I’m not thinking about it [the speculation],” he told Sky Sport Italia last month.


“I can’t be compared to Lewandowski – he plays for Bayern Munich, myself at Genoa. I don’t think the links with Barcelona are true, even though I’ve heard about it. If I have any secrets, it’s simply that I try to improve, giving my best in training. With the coach Ballardini, we’ve agreed what my position on the field is. I know exactly what I have to do.”

While Genoa will hardly be excited to part ways with their new-found star, the report from Italy suggests that they would be willing to accept something in the region of €30-35m for him if it does come to that.

Let’

6 Shock Signings by Big Clubs as Man Utd Weigh Up Bizarre Andreas Granqvist Transfer

Helsingborg defender and Swedish World Cup hero Andreas Granqvist claimed earlier this month during an interview in his homeland that Manchester United are interested in signing him and that both he and his current club would accept if there is a formal offer submitted in January.

The veteran centre-back, who briefly played in the Premier League for Wigan Athletic for just 13 months over a decade ago, led Sweden to the quarter finals of the World Cup in summer and it isn’t unfeasible that his no nonsense defending and vast experience would be of appeal.

33-year-old Granqvist had been playing with Krasnodar in Russia until the World Cup, at which point he returned home to join Helsingborg in the second tier of Swedish football.

Notwithstanding any vague logic, jumping from the Superettan to Old Trafford would be a massive shock. Yet should United bizarrely go ahead with the alleged interest, they would be far from the first big club to make a such a surprise signing straight from ‘left-field’.

Here’s a look back at six examples that have actually happened…  

6. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting (PSG)

Scoring just five Premier League goals in a single season with Stoke that ended relegation was all that it took for Paris Saint-Germain to snap up Cameroon international Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting on a free transfer during the summer.

Instead of Peter Crouch, Saido Berahino and Tom Ince, the 29-year-old now counts Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and Edinson Cavani among his attacking colleagues.  

5. Dale Jennings (Bayern Munich)

Dale Jennings might have been forgiven for thinking that his chance to make it at the top level was gone when he was released by Liverpool at the age of 16 and joined Tranmere. However, rather bizarrely, Bayern Munich swooped in and took him to Germany three years later.

Jennings spent two years in Bavaria, playing for Bayern’s second string, and returned to England in 2013 to join Barnsley. He later dropped out of professional football in 2016 and has since returned to play at non-league level after resurrecting his career.

4. Michael Hector (Chelsea)

Michael Hector is still contracted to Chelsea three years after surprisingly joining the club and it remains something of a mystery as to why he was signed in the first place.

Prior to 2015, Hector had enjoyed a very modest career and at the age of 23 a solitary full season in the Championship with Reading was his best achievement. 

Now 26, the Jamaica international is still yet to play a game for Chelsea, having spent every season out on loan.  

3. Park Chu-young (Arsenal)

Arsenal’s capture of striker Park Chu-young never made sense from the off. The Gunners snatched the South Korean national hero from under the nose of Lille as part of a spree of desperate late deals in the summer of 2011 and proceeded to hand him the number nine shirt.

That is seemingly where the faith ended, however, as the Gunners realised their odd mistake. Park played just six first team games and was later loaned to Celta Vigo and Watford.  

2. Bebe (Manchester United)

Just one year after playing in the 2009 European Street Football Festival, Portuguese winger Bebe found himself joining Manchester United for the significant sum of £8m.

20-year-old Bebe had spent his teenage years raised in a shelter in Lisbon after being abandoned by his parents and being placed under the care of the church. He signed for Vitoria de Guimaraes in 2010 and just five weeks later found himself at Old Trafford, after being recommended to Sir Alex Ferguson by Carlos Queiroz.

Bebe, real name Tiago Manuel Dias Correia, made a total of seven appearances for United in his first campaign and was loaned out for the remaining years of his contract. 

1. Julien Faubert (Real Madrid)

French winger Julien Faubert went from struggling to make an impact with West Ham in the Premier League to joining Real Madrid in January 2009 after completing a shock loan move. Faubert’s career in the Spanish capital was predictably bad, though.

He once apparently skipped training when he mistakenly thought he had a day off and even fell asleep on the bench during a game. He made only two appearances and Real opted against exercising their option to make the move permanent.

Let’