In a recent interview with Bild, Bayern Munich and Germany national team legend Franz Beckenbauer backed his former team for success this season.
After spending most of the season trailing Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga, Bayern Munich caught up to the league leaders with a big 5-1 win over Borussia Monchengladbach this past weekend. The Bavarians are now tied on points with their league rivals, but a two-point goal differential sees them just behind BVB in the league standings.
While Dortmund have been been on a hard decline over the past few weeks, Bayern have been trending in the right direction. Lucien Favre’s side have picked up just six points from their last five Bundesliga matches. Bayern have secured double the points in the same time span.
Though they may not yet be favorites to lift this season’s Bundesliga title, there’s no doubt momentum is on Die Roten‘s side. Speaking recently with Bild (via T-Online), club legend Franz Beckenbauer believes the Bavarians are heading in the right direction, but he still expects a bit more from his former side.
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“I have the feeling Bayern are on an upward curve, even if they are not yet where I would like to see them.”
Der Kaiser believes his side to be trending in the right direction, he ultimately sees the title being decided when the two teams meet in the Bundesliga just over a month from now. Depending on how the two clubs fare over the next few weeks, their meeting at the Allianz Arena on April 6th could decide who heads into the final phase of the season at the top of the German table.
Niko Kovac has made several adjustments in recent weeks to get his team back on track. The one that has stood out the most is undoubtedly the return of Javi Martinez into defensive midfield, a move Beckenbauer — a man who knows a thing or two about defending — sees as critically important.
“Niko Kovac has survived his first crisis and heavy public criticism well. The team has come together again and is playing with compactness. We had holes before that the Empire State Building could have fit in! Now, Javi Martinez is stabilizing the defense” (via Marca).
Javi Martinez isn’t the only player Beckenbauer acknowledged individually. He also heaped praise on the 30-year-old’s fellow Spanish-speaking midfielders Thiago Alcantara and James Rodriguez. Furthermore, he labeled Robert Lewandowski a “world-class” striker and backed the Pole to be decisive against Liverpool next week.
For Beckenbauer, winning the Bundesliga is more important than the Champions League, even if it is the club’s seventh consecutive season finishing on top in Germany. Niko Kovac and Co. are trending in the right direction to do just that, but they will have to remain at their best over the next few months and not take any pressure of Borussia Dortmund.