Karl-Heinz Rummenigge called Uli Hoeneß the "mother of all managers" and the "soul of our club," Franz Beckenbauer called him the "most important man in FC Bayern's history. Nobody has achieved as much as him." On Thursday, the FC Bayern München eV President turns 65, but while others consider retirement at this age, 'Mr FC Bayern' Uli Hoeneß is full of energy.He wants to act as a "link" between members and club on the one hand and the supervisory board and the board of directors on the other hand, Hoeneß declared after being re-elected FCB President on 25 November. He wants to be "a carer and advisor for all the staff and players. And the coaches can also come to me for advice." Hoeneß promised the members to "do everything I can to fulfil your expectations."
The return to the club he loves
An overwhelming majority of 98.5 percent voted for Hoeneß to resume the most important office at the club, his second tenure after being President from 2009 to his conviction in 2014. By returning to the club he loves 987 days after stepping down, the former FC Bayern player, general manager and board member was able to "conclude a very difficult period in my life and complete my return to normal life. I'm looking ahead now," Hoeneß recently told official club journal Bayern-Magazin.
Hoeneß joined FC Bayern in 1970 and went on to win everything there was to win. When he was forced to end his playing career due to injury at the age of 27 in 1979, he began a second career as a general manager and made FC Bayern one of Europe's most successful clubs. After 30 years of service as general manager and board member he succeeded Franz Beckenbauer as FCB President in November 2009, but stepped down in March 2014 after a conviction for tax irregularities.
Shape the future
Hoeneß is back and will contribute to FC Bayern's future as President and board member of the company FC Bayern München AG. During his work on day release at FC Bayern's junior team Hoeneß "felt the people here wanted my advice and my experience, and hear my opinion. I'll continue to offer it and try to help so that the club advances and is on equal terms with its European competitors."
Hoeneß aims to further develop the youth programme and the new youth academy is set to open in the summer of 2017. "In the medium term I hope the facility will yield some players for our senior squad, but we have to push it very, very intensely. The task will be to train lads who regard FC Bayern as much more than a normal employer."
Positive preliminary conclusion
Together with his longstanding companion Rummenigge, Hoeneß aims to introduce a new generation to Bayern's leadership over the next few years and ensure the club is well-positioned for the future. And of course he wants to help develop the basketball team, his second passion besides football, to collect more silverware following the 2014 German championship title.
"I want to be a president who's close to the people and concerned with the members and fans. I want to know what concerns the people," stressed Hoeneß, who drew a positive preliminary conclusion before the winter break: "I'm feeling very much at home. Everything's perfect in my private life, and things are going very well at FC Bayern, too. My return went smoothly. I feel as if I've never been away."
Hoeneß takes care
Hoeneß is full of energy, he has ambitious plans with 'his' FC Bayern, but today he will celebrate with his family and friends. The 'manager, maker, man' (the motto for his 60th birthday five years ago) does not have any personal birthday wishes. But "for the world I wish more people will be able to live in peace than in the last few years. It's terrible that people in Syria, Iraq and many more parts of the world must live in constant fear for their lives day and night."
Uli Hoeneß "takes care." This is important to him, this is his motive power. Taking care of his FC Bayern, his friends, his family and people who have been less fortunate. But today, on his 65th birthday, Hoeneß himself is at the centre of attention. Today the fans, staff, players, coaches, colleagues in the club's leadership - everyone who has ties to FC Bayern - wish him all the best.
Happy Birthday, Uli Hoeneß!