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Promising start

Newcomer Oddo whets appetite for more

Just before switching to Munich, Massimo Oddo spent a long time on the phone. His Italy team-mate Fabio Grosso called to sell him on a move to Olympique Lyon. “They were extremely interested, and I was very close to signing,” Oddo revealed.

But Luca Toni also tracked down the right-back. The Bayern striker passed on news of his own club’s interest, and talked through the benefits of joining Munich instead. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Jürgen Klinsmann then came on the phone in quick succession, and Oddo’s mind was made up: he signed a one-year deal with Bayern at the end of last week.

“Bayern boast an amazing history. I regard them as one of the five or six best clubs in the world,” commented Oddo. “Also I’m more attracted to playing in the Bundesliga.“ The 32-year-old witnessed the superb standards in German stadiums at the World Cup two years ago.

The defender then pulled on a Bayern shirt for the first time in Tuesday’s Olli Kahn testimonial at the Allianz Arena – and promptly offered impressive evidence of his undoubted quality. “He’s a neat and tidy player, he’s technically gifted, and that gave us great shape. He’s a superb passer of the ball, and you could see he has vision from his diagonal balls,” Klinsmann summarised afterwards, “we’ve brought him here because of all this.“

“I think it was a pretty good start,” the former AC Milan star reflected after a providing a sublime assist for Miroslav Klose’s equaliser. Oddo said the darting runs and hard-hit crosses which peppered his display on Tuesday were typical of the way he plays. “I’m strong going forward, although my priority is defending.“