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'I'm looking forward to the challenge'

Jupp Heynckes returns to FC Bayern

He's back! Jupp Heynckes returns to Munich 1,588 days after leaving FC Bayern and retiring from his coaching career in June 2013. After parting company with Carlo Ancelotti, the 72-year-old coach is in charge of the first team at the German record champions until the end of the current season. "I'm happy one of my best friends is back at FC Bayern," said supervisory board chairman Uli Hoeneß at the official presentation held at the Allianz Arena on Monday afternoon.

"In 2013 I made the decision not to carry on as a coach. I'd made my mind up," declared Heynckes. However, Hoeneß and FCB chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge asked him in discussions "to take over as coach for a limited period," explained Heynckes who decided to accept the offer after talking to his family. "I'm looking forward to the challenge. I know how to deal with the players, how I have to work with them and I'm confident we can get back to winning ways."

For Heynckes, this is his fourth stint at FC Bayern. From 1987 to 1991, in the early part of 2009 plus 2011 to 2013, the former world class striker was head coach at FCB, winning the German league title three times. Winning the treble of the Bundesliga, Champions League and DFB Cup in 2013 will never be forgotten. Eight players from that squad are still at FCB. So Heynckes will be reunited with many familiar faces.

"Jupp is the ideal coach for the situation we’re in," said Rummenigge. The chairman said Heynckes knows FC Bayern "inside out" and is "the right man given all his experience." Rummenigge continued: "He's the man who knows what needs doing, how to lead this team and get them back on track." Conversations with Heynckes revealed "the passion still burning inside him. Accordingly, he will coach and look after the team from this afternoon."

Heynckes stressed his return is "not about me. It's primarily about FC Bayern." His friendship with Hoeneß and Rummenigge ("We've kept in contact over recent years") and his affection for the club ("I have a lot to thank FC Bayern for as it was the springboard for an international career") motivated him to come out of retirement to take his place on the bench as coach. "The challenge attracts me and I'm really happy about it."

The first training session under Heynckes is this Monday afternoon at Säbener Straße and the first match is on Saturday against SC Freiburg. Over the past few days he has analysed the state of the team and now has "a clear plan" in terms of his approach at the club. "Our team has potential and quality. I need to tease that out of the players and get them back up to speed. The important thing is for the players to rediscover confidence in their own ability."

Heynckes was unwilling to set targets for the rest of the season. Initially it is about "restoring discipline to our game" and to "ease the situation, slow things down and be calm. We can only gain strength by being calm." Heynckes also declared: "There's lots of work to do."

 

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