Herbert Hainer: New minds ask new questions
Herbert Hainer has been president of FC Bayern for over 100 days, and has now srawn his first conclusions. You can read the full version of the interview in our member magazine "51" (German language only).
Interview with Herbert Hainer
Mr. Hainer, how did you organise the initial settling in phase?
"Lots of conversations with decision-makers. The aim is to find out how we all picture this transition, which began with Uli Hoeneß stepping down and will continue with the departure of Karl-Heinz Rummenigge at the end of 2021. It's about the next generation and the management team of Oliver Kahn and Hasan Salihamidžić."
Which projects have priority in your first year in office?
"At FC Bayern, the focus is always on professional football. This is about working together with the board to create the conditions to continue to achieve our ambitious goals. For example, we are now building a new skills lab and performance centre in our youth academy. This is the next important building block to develop our players. It is about continuously optimising structures and processes so that FC Bayern can continue to stand up to Real Madrid, Liverpool, Barcelona and the other major players in world football."
And projects outside of professional football?
"The basketball section are causing concern with their performance in the EuroLeague. Being last is absolutely unsatisfactory. The analysis is underway, and we are working on a three-year plan. I also had discussions with the women's football section. VfL Wolfsburg have been ahead of us for years - we should change this. There is consensus throughout the organisation that we will step up our efforts there. We want to be Bundesliga champions and competitive in the Champions League. I think it's only fair to give our women comparable support as our men. At the same time, it is also fair to make the same demands on them. We are FC Bayern. This means that we are number one in every area. I'm sure our women will live up to this expectation. That is what makes it so appealing to play for Bayern."
Personal ambition is important as president of FCB - what do you want to win?
"Preferably everything. I said before my time as FC Bayern president that I don't like losing."
Not so much is publicl known about Oliver Kahn in his new role. What is your experience of the newcomer on the management floor?
"With him, we have an absolute football professional who has embodied the much-quoted Bayern gene like hardly any other player. After his active career, he continued his education, studied, and founded companies - he's doing extremely well for this club on all levels and will certainly make a big difference in the future."
Explain to the fans how conversations with him play out behind the scenes at Säbener Straße.
"I like the fact he's not afraid to question certain things: is it always right how we did it in the past? If not, what can we change? It's about leaving no stone unturned - everyone has always worked very well here, everyone knows that - but FC Bayern would not be the club it is today if people hadn't striven for the best in everything. Asking questions triggers thought processes. And new minds ask new questions - that brings a change, a new generation. This is desirable in such a process. "
In 2022, the final of the Champions League will take place in Munich - Hoeneß said before the 2012 final: "We have to be there!" Are you saying that now?
"Yes. There is no bigger stage in European club football. And if the final takes place in Munich, we have to do everything we can to get there. We want to win if possible. We have some catching up to do."