Sports

Bayern facing tougher season says Beckenbauer

DPA Berlin | Updated on August 19, 2014

Germany’s World Cup victory means Bayern Munich won’t be running away with the Bundesliga again this season, football great Franz Beckenbauer says.

Beckenbauer, who was a World Cup player in 1974 and coach in 1990, says in his regular column for dpa global media service that history shows Bayern have suffered in a post-World Cup season after a Germany triumph. Last season in Pep Guardiola’s maiden term in charge, Bayern wrapped up the title in record time.

Guardiola’s side begin at home to Wolfsburg on Friday - with Beckenbauer predicting a much more difficult season.

“After the 1974 title, we at Bayern had a major collapse and finished only 10th the next season. After the 1990 World Cup, Munich did finish runner-up in the Bundesliga, but that season also wasn’t very exhilarating,” he said.

As with past World Cup-winning national sides, Bayern were highly represented in Brazil. Bayern had seven players in the Germany team, plus winger Arjen Robben playing for the Netherlands, defender Dante with Brazil and midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri with Switzerland.

Beckenbauer said it was “scarcely imaginable” for a coach to get an exhausted group of players fit in time for a new season.

“It can take months before the team finds its rhythm again, before each individual physically-weary player is again ready to test his limits once again,” he said.

“It is not just the physical stress that the players are up against, but also the entire emotional World Cup excitement still swirling in their heads.” Injuries to Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javi Martinez are further problems, although one difference to 1974 is the fact that Bayern now have a larger squad. They are also fortunate in signing Poland striker Robert Lewandowski who should be in good shape, Beckenbauer said.

Published on August 19, 2014

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