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Relaxed and optimistic

Nerlinger ‘very confident’ for new campaign

Naturally, even though the Bayern squad are tied up in their pre-season training camp at Lake Garda, Christian Nerlinger continues to be quizzed on the latest transfer rumours surrounding Germany’s most successful club. An Italian reporter asked whether there was anything to rumours of an impending switch for José Sosa to Serie A clubs Parma or Catania, but Nerlinger refused to be drawn.

“The papers are always full of rumours. Some are closer to reality than others, but I’m not going to name any names here and now,” the 36-year-old calmly responded. “We’ve always said we have huge faith in the current team.” However, should the chance arise “for us to strengthen the squad in terms of quality, there’s always the chance something could still happen.” Nor was the club sticking to a self-imposed upper limit on any potential transfers: “We observe the market as a whole.” And that was that for transfer talk in the daily news conference.

Other topics are far more pressing at Bayern right now, chiefly the “problematic pre-season”, as Louis van Gaal recently described it, due to the fact that 13 of the club’s best players are on vacation for some time yet. Martin Demichelis and Franck Ribéry, who is recovering from a groin operation, will at least rejoin their team-mates after the Lake Garda training camp. “I hope Franck will be able to start by increasing his jogging and running, and will soon be close to resuming the squad programme,” Nerlinger commented. However, the German and Dutch World Cup players will not be back in Munich for another week after that.