Created on 02-05-2008 at 00:00 AM
Bayern’s dismay at their UEFA Cup exit to St Petersburg did not last long. “I was down for about 20 minutes – and then you move on,“ declared general manager Uli Hoeneß after the club’s heaviest European defeat since 1991 and a 6-2 reverse in Copenhagen. When he spoke to reporters at the Petrovski stadium afterwards, Hoeneß put aside the disappointment of missing out on the final, expressly praising this season’s squad for “hitting all our targets“.
Uli Hoeneß after the defeat in St. Petersburg:
Question: Uli Hoeneß, you must be speechless after this 4-0 defeat to Zenit St. Petersburg in the UEFA Cup semi-finals.
Hoeneß: ”I’m not speechless at all. The margin of defeat doesn’t matter to me in the slightest. We’re out, and that’s a fact. But we couldn’t expect the team to produce another escape act like we did in Getafe or in the Cup final against Dortmund. We needed to take the lead, we could have equalised at 1-1, or pulled one back when it was 2-0. But after their third I knew it was over, because we’d run out of strength, especially mentally.“
Question: How would you rate St. Petersburg?
Hoeneß: ”They weren’t that good in the first half, but they toyed with us after making it 3-0. That’s normal. They had the space they need for their style of play.“
Question: Does the defeat cast a shadow over the season as a whole?
Hoeneß: ”Not at all. I’m very satisfied with the season. I want to pay the team a huge compliment. We’ve hit all our targets, in my opinion. Hardly anyone wins three trophies in one season. I was down for about 20 minutes – and then you move on.“
Question: You totally dominate the domestic scene...
Hoeneß: ”Let’s stop all this talk of domestic versus international. I refuse to be told we’re nobodies on the international stage. The team’s exhausted – and that’s that!“
Question: Are you not disappointed at the failure to win a historic treble?
Hoeneß: ”It’s just a media invention, treble, quadruple, quarterback, it doesn’t interest me in the slightest. We’ve won two trophies, and we’re back in the Champions League next season, which is where we belonged for ages. I don’t really care about the rest.“
Question: Do you think the disappointment will be banished from the players’ heads when they wrap up the championship this weekend?
Hoeneß: ”As I said, you’re obviously despondent when you lose, and when a dream dies. But to be perfectly frank, we shouldn’t lose our heads over this. If you’d told me before the season we’d be in the UEFA Cup semis and had already basically won two trophies, we’d have taken it without hesitation.”