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Christian Nerlinger:

‘The coach’s influence is there for all to see’

Bayern have started the second half of the season with deserved wins over Hoffenheim and Bremen. “The team looks in good shape, both on and off the field,” Christian Nerlinger exclusively told However, the club’s director of sport warned against inflated expectations and complacency: “Let’s be clear about one thing: we’re still second in the table behind Bayer Leverkusen.”

Interview: Christian Nerlinger: Bayern have won both their games since the winter break. You can’t have many reasons to complain, can you?
Christian Nerlinger: “No, basically none at all. The team looks in extremely good shape, both on and off the field. The wins have contributed to that obviously, but there are other reasons too: if I look out of the window, I see 24 fit and healthy players, so the coach is picking from a full squad. All in all, we’re very optimistic at the moment.” Yet again, Bayern can get a head start on Leverkusen at the weekend, as the leaders don’t play until Sunday. Is it a psychological advantage?
Nerlinger: “Yes, provided we win. But it’s not what I regard as the main factor right now. We haven’t yet reached a stage where the psychology’s playing much of a role. That’ll come towards the end of the season. That’s when we’ll see who’s more solid. We simply need to keep on winning, and games such as the one at home to Mainz rate as must-win fixtures.” Bayern appear to be winning with attractive and exuberant football at the moment.
Nerlinger: “That’s correct. The mood in the dressing room is really good. It was visible in the period before Christmas, and grew during our training camp. The two wins since then are confirmation of what’s been happening.”