Created on 18-05-2008 at 00:00 AM
The focus of attention at Bayern on the 34th and final matchday of the 2007-8 campaign was firmly on the departures of coach Ottmar Hitzfeld and keeper Oliver Kahn. "It was a very moving and emotional farewell, and I had to give in to tears of joy,“ declared Hitzfeld, who is taking over as Switzerland boss this summer.
Oliver Kahn expressed gratitude for his long term of service at Bayern, although he harboured no sense of regret at ending his playing career: "It's the perfect time to retire, because it's becoming harder and harder to maintain the physical and mental strength you need at the highest level. Twenty years as a goalkeeper really hasn't been an easy job.“
Reaction to Bayern v Hertha BSC Berlin:
Franz Beckenbauer: "There couldn't be a better way of celebrating the title. The weather's played its part without a single drop of rain, and there's a simply fantastic atmosphere here.“
Uli Hoeneß: "Saying goodbye to both of them is very hard, it's been very emotional today. An era as a club coach has ended for Ottmar Hitzfeld.“
Ottmar Hitzfeld: "I'm smiling again now, and I'm just delighted I've come through it all. It was a very moving and emotional farewell, and I had to give in to tears of joy. I've had seven and a half momentous years at this football club, and they've been good years despite the heavy burden of the job. It all came flooding out of me today. The greatest disappointment was definitely the way we lost the 1999 Champions League final. It was an important moment in a life, the kind of thing you need to experience at least once.“
Oliver Kahn: "I had to concentrate really hard one last time, as we were after the lowest number of goals conceded in a season. If we'd been 4-0 up, I'd have spent the last five minutes as a striker. I was very conscious of everything going on around me today, although obviously it was also all routine. It'll take a little while for me to move on completely, and I'll be fighting back the odd tear before then. Winning the league again is the most fantastic thing, you only really appreciate it after you've missed out. It's the perfect time to retire, because it's becoming harder and harder to maintain the physical and mental strength you need at the highest level. Twenty years as a goalkeeper really hasn't been an easy job."