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Seasoned keeper

Butt: I’m delighted it’s starting again at last

Jörg Butt is about to start his third season at Bayern, but for the first time, he is first-choice goalkeeper – in all probability. Otherwise, little has changed for the 36-year-old. He has even previously made the acquaintance of new goalkeeping coach Frans Hoek. “I know his philosophy and his vision of how a goalkeeper should play,” revealed Butt. The pair have previously crossed paths while on duty for their personal equipment supplier.

Butt said that his initial sessions with Hoek had left behind “a very good impression.” The 53-year-old Dutch coach clearly operates on the same wavelength as the club’s likely number one keeper. “It’s not purely and simply goalkeeping training with him, he tries to integrate the keeper in the team tactics. He regards the keeper as the eleventh outfield player,” reported Butt. “I like that, because that’s how I’ve always tried to play the game.”

Fully fit despite vacation

On his third day back from vacation, Butt described himself as “top fit and fully recovered.” A family holiday on the Baltic coast had recharged his batteries to the maximum. And in comparison to Bastian Schweinsteiger, Philipp Lahm and Co, Butt feels he may have an advantage. “It’s easier for me, because I wasn’t under the same ceaseless mental pressure during the World Cup. And that’s why I’m delighted it’s all starting up again at last.”

The keeper’s appearance for Germany in the third-place play-off against Uruguay was a “fine way to end a fine season,” he reasoned. However, Butt is already looking to the future. “I’ve moved on from last season. The past counts for nothing in football. My goal now is to play a good and successful season.”

Rock-solid defence

Butt should be helped in that aim by playing behind a solid and well-organised defence, with the one possibility of Holger Badstuber moving to centre-half and Diego Contento coming in at left-back. “He’s physically strong and technically excellent. And he also has what it takes to cope with life at Bayern,” said Butt, confident of the Munich-born youngster’s ability to build on his promising senior debut last term.

The 36-year-old has no intention of resting on his laurels merely because his place at the top of the goalkeeping hierarchy appears secure – quite the opposite in fact. “You have to prove yourself over and over again at Bayern, which is one of the very best things about the club. You can never sit back and take it easy, which is why Bayern are so successful.”