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Uli Hoeneß:

‘We’ll probably bring in one or two new players’

Cameras and reporters are never far away when Uli Hoeneß appears in public. That was the case after Saturday’s 2-0 win against KSC, but also on Sunday when the 56-year-old was the star guest on DSF sport TV’s Doppelpass magazine show. reviews the highlights of the official’s statements on both occasions.

Uli Hoeneß on…

… the situation in the Bundesliga following the Karlsruhe match:
“It wasn’t exactly perfect today, it left a lot to be desired. But these are the games you have to win if you want to end up as champions. It’s been a good weekend for us, but a lot could happen yet. I believe we’ll finish top at the end, because we have the best squad, and I think we’ll succeed in all three competitions.“

… on Ottmar Hitzfeld’s rotation:
“Ottmar has to keep squad morale high. That’s smart when you have so many talented and fit players. Rotation is good provided it works. You can do it as much as you like provided it works. It’s a question of timing. It’s fantastic at the moment, but there have been times when it didn’t work so well. We made eight changes to the team in the summer, and it needed time to gel, you’d normally need one or two seasons. Rotation only works if you have a functioning team. That wasn’t the case in November, so it didn’t work then. Ottmar and I are close friends, we talked about it for four or five hours, and he agreed he’d overdone it. It wasn’t Ottmar’s best phase.“

… on Karl-Heinz Rummenigge’s outburst after the Bolton match:
“We’re all only human. They equalised right at the end, and Karl-Heinz and I were furious. I advised him not to comment, but he couldn’t escape the reporters. But I honestly believe he regretted what he said the instant he’d said it. He wasn’t in any way trying to undermine Ottmar Hitzfeld.“

… Oliver Kahn’s suspension before the winter break:
“It was a courageous decision by Ottmar Hitzfeld, and we all supported him. It was a wake-up call to the team. They saw the coach wasn’t afraid to have a go. It’ll have made the players think hard about their behaviour in the future.“

… the importance of Franck Ribéry:
“The team looks for Franck a lot, because they know something will happen when he’s on the ball. We’ll need some balance soon, more play down the right and through the middle. But we mustn’t complain as long as he keeps it up. His pace with the ball at his feet is incredible. He’s going at top speed, but he can still accelerate and keep control of the ball. And not just a couple of times per half, it’s six, seven or eight times. The others work very hard for him, because we don’t expect him to defend much. Franck benefits from our willingness to support him.“

… on Ribéry’s future, given his contract with FCB until 2011:
“The oil magnates can try what they want but we won’t sell the player. It doesn’t even come into question.“

… on transfer negotiations with Ribéry and Luca Toni:
“Eight weeks before they signed, neither Franck nor Luca ever imagined they’d end up in Germany. We invited Luca here with his partner, we showed them the city, we invited friends who we knew had an influence over them. We slowly but surely won over the extended Toni family. For Franck, we simply offered Marseille enough money until he was ours.“

… on transfer plans for the new season:
“We’ll probably bring in one or two new players, but definitely not six, seven or eight. Great teams grow together, so we don’t need four or five new faces. We’ll certainly let a player or two leave, as we’d like to see a smaller squad, not a bigger one. You need a good atmosphere, and it doesn’t improve with a bigger squad.“

… whether he will continue sitting on the bench after Jürgen Klinsmann takes over:
“I wouldn’t have a problem giving up my seat. I’m minded to offer that to Jürgen Klinsmann. You need to move on at some point, and when better than now? I’m excited, there will be big changes.“

… his future as Bayern President from autumn 2009:
“That’s the plan, provided I’m elected. My contract as manager expires at the end of December 2009, and I definitely won’t extend it.“

… on the demise of the chip-in-ball experiment:
“You could consider installing a camera in the goal frame, but we should let human beings make mistakes. If we iron out every error it would be sterile, and I wonder if it would be the game we all love. I certainly don’t want ten interruptions per game while they check if a player was three centimetres offside or not.“

… on proposed changes to the match schedule:
“We should be flexible. If the league has three or four teams playing Thursday in the UEFA Cup, the TV situation has to be adapted. The station which would have broadcast on Saturday should do so on Sunday. Our experience at Bayern is that Sunday matches go down well and are very well attended.“