It was a time when Bavaria’s dominance in Germany was called into question. From 2010 to 2012 they won zero Bundesliga titles. Their nemesis: Borussia Dortmund. On Saturday, as Bayern prepares to host them in Der Klassiker Bundesliga, Dortmund have 53 points from 25 games. Bayern has one less point, but that was enough to replace Julian Nagelsmann with Thomas Tuchel.
Betting on Nagelsmann was very ambitious, Lahm says of the manager, who was 33 when Bayern appointed him in 2021. Age was part of the problem in managing a locker room where Manuel Neuer was older and many big names are almost the same age as Nagelsmann. Experience is a value that is part of being a good manager. It will help him in the future. He is certainly a good coach.
But the situation could have been handled better. Reacting to reports that Nagelsmann found out about his dismissal from social media, Lahm says: If you find out about it from newspapers… social media, it’s not good. For a big club.
Nagelsmann left because at Bayern you have to win every game, Lahm says. The team has failed to do that too often this year. The challenge for the rest of the season is to change that in the right way. So Tuchel, a Champions League winner and championship runner-up, is a worthy successor to Jürgen Klopp at Dortmund.
Bayern won all eight games in the Champions League, but only 15 of 25 in the Bundesliga. They drew seven times, two more than last season on their way to their 11th consecutive league title, and before the international break they lost 1-2 to Bayer Leverkusen, which sealed Nagelsmann’s fate.
Lahm, 39, believes the next few weeks will define Bayern’s season. Next week is the German Cup quarterfinals, and they will play Manchester City in the eighth round of the Champions League. The situation is very good because they are in every competition. But now it’s about the titles. It’s important for Bayern, said the former German and Bayern captain and 2014 World Cup winner in an interview with Zoom, organized by Sony Sports.
But what if things go wrong? I don’t think they will lose those four big matches. But if they lose, I don’t know… Drop out in the cup, drop out in the championship…. Through the five o’clock shadow, Lam’s smile shows great teeth and conveys that he can’t believe what he’s sayingit.
In 13 games this year, Dortmund’s only defeat ended their Champions League performance. They went to Munich, defeating FC Cologne 6-1. I think Dortmund are in a good phase, they have confidence, but at home, with the (great) experience of the Bayern players…, said Lahm, waving his right hand to underline the importance of the match at the Allianz Arena. But if Dortmund opens up a four-point lead, it will be good for the Bundesliga, he says.
But it won’t be good for the league if Jude Bellingham leaves, as he probably will in the summer, Lahm asks. I don’t know what will happen, but he’s a very talented player. It’s important for a young player to play on a top team every week. And I think Dortmund is a top team, he says.