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Rummenigge’s straight talk

‘It's entirely down to the team now’

Saturday was Karl-Heinz Rummenigge’s 55th birthday. The best possible present for the FCB chairman would have been three points against Bundesliga leaders Mainz, but instead, the champions fell 2-1 to the high-flying minnows. After an eventful match at the Allianz Arena, Rummenigge appeared in the Mixed Zone and took questions from reporters, where he was in no mood to mince words.

Question: Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, this wasn’t how you imagined celebrating your birthday.
Rummenigge: You obviously want to win on your birthday, but we didn’t manage it a couple of weeks ago on Franz Beckenbauer’s birthday [when FCB drew 0-0 with Bremen]. At least we drew that match, but we’ve lost today.

Why did Bayern lose?
We deserved to lose, because Mainz were the better team. Taking it as a whole, we never got going right from the start. Mainz were hard-running, aggressive and passionate too. We lacked these attributes today.

The Bayern camp always feared a patchy start after the World Cup, but did you think it would be this tough?
After beating Hoffenheim, we’d hoped to win today and make up ground in the table. We need to make sure we turn the corner at once, because a ten-point gap is already a lot.

Leaders Mainz are ten points ahead, and your next opponents Dortmund seven points clear. What are the implications?
We need to make sure the situation improves next week, and we need to make a start in Dortmund. We can’t afford the luxury of believing we’ll turn it round at some point like we did last year. We have to start collecting points and applying pressure on the teams above us.