News ID: 212889
Published: 0154 GMT April 08, 2018

Heynckes: Bundesliga not priority when I took charge

Heynckes: Bundesliga not priority when I took charge
Jupp Heynckes salutes the Bayern Munich fans after his team Augsburg’s WWK Arena in Germany on April 7, 2018.

Jupp Heynckes said he "did not waste any time thinking about winning the Bundesliga" when he took over in October as his Bayern Munich side cruised to its 28th German league title and a sixth Bundesliga in succession with an emphatic 4-1 win at Augsburg.

Bayern trailed Borussia Dortmund by five points when it hired Heynckes for a fourth spell in charge on October 6, but the 72-year-old was able to rally the club to his fourth Bundesliga title as a coach, ESPN FC reported.

Heynckes is the only person to have won both four titles as a manager and four as a player, and asked by ESPN FC how highly he rated this trophy, Heynckes said it held a special place for him because the title was not the first goal when he replaced Carlo Ancelotti.

"Firstly, I have to admit I never imagined that I would return, but Bayern couldn't find an alternative as coach," Heynckes said at the post-match news conference.

"But I agreed to come back as I've experienced so much success with Bayern and I owe my career abroad with Spanish clubs to my time at Bayern Munich as well.

"I'm especially pleased with this title because when we took over we did not waste any time thinking about winning the Bundesliga. At that time, Bayern was five points behind Borussia Dortmund, which was playing some excellent football.

"When I was playing, and I won a lot of titles [four with Borussia Monchengladbach], but winning the German championship was always the nicest experience."

Bayern's sixth straight title is unprecedented in the Bundesliga and coming in the 29th game of the season, it was also the third-earliest the trophy has ever been secured, after Bayern's triumphs in 2013 and 2014.

Heynckes credited the work of Ancelotti, despite the slow start to the season that cost the Italian manager his job.

"I would like send my greetings to Carlo Ancelotti in Italy. This title is also for him," Heynckes said. "He is a gentleman and, absolutely, one of the top coaches in Europe. As my predecessor he played his part in this success too. I have the utmost respect for all he has achieved both as a player and coach. Greetings Carlo in Italy."

Robben and Franck Ribery are both entering the final months of their current one-year deals with the club, and Heynckes singled out the wingers to take the plaudits in front of the travelling fans after the game.

"I wanted to give a special tribute to Robben and Ribery, who have been at Bayern for nine and 10 years respectively," he added. "Where does this happen these days? They are both great professionals with exceptional quality.

"That was my way of showing my respects for both of them, and furthermore Ribery was celebrating his [35th] birthday today."

Ribery won his eighth Bundesliga title, matching the record for the most by any player also held by Oliver Kahn, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mehmet Scholl and Philipp Lahm.

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