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Andries Jonker takes charge until season's end

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Andries Jonker takes charge until season's end

Postby FCBayernNews » Sun Apr 10, 2011 4:20 pm

Shortly before midday, Thomas Müller was the first player to leave the Bayern performance centre at the Säbener Strasse, followed by Toni Kroos. Only then did the new boss emerge into the sunlight: with Louis van Gaal relieved of his duties, Andries Jonker has been charged with guiding the club to a Champions League qualifying spot in the last five games of the campaign.

"We wanted a man who knows how things work here and knows what needs to be changed," explained chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge on the day after a disappointing 1-1 draw with Nürnberg, and the club's slide to fourth in the league table. Caretaker boss Jonker will be assisted by Hermann Gerland, Marcel Bout and goalkeeping coach Walter Junghans.

"The decision to entrust him with the task isn't just a gut reaction," added director of sport Christian Nerlinger, revealing that Jonker "didn't need long to think about it" after being offered the job. "We know he really appreciates this club, he's privately happy here, and he has great faith in the team. He stated that today in front of the team, and he's 100 percent convinced that together, we can achieve third place."

Ahead of his first training session as head coach, the 48-year-old Dutchman delivered "a remarkable first address" to the players, Rummenigge observed. "He said he'd continue with the good things we undoubtedly have here, but he'll change the things which he believes require changing. I believe Andries Jonker already has a clearly-defined plan."

Building team spirit

The first change was already visible on the training ground. On the day after a match, the players have normally trained in small groups, but this was replaced by a session involving the whole squad. The stars took turns at six-on-two matches and a few gentle laps of the training ground. The main aim was to build team spirit and a sense of unity.

Mario Gomez, Thomas Kraft and Danijel Pranjic were not among the group, with the three performing individual regeneration exercise instead. Centre-back Breno was forced to sit out the session with an ankle injury, but Daniel van Buyten was able to jog for the first time since tearing a hamstring two weeks ago .

Great faith in Jonker

Sunday's session ended after approximately an hour, after which captains Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger led the squad in signing autographs and posing for photos for the 1,000 or so fans who flocked to the sunny Säbener Strasse to witness the first workout under Jonker.

"We have great faith in him and his working methods, his expertise and the way he treats the players. We believe in him and his ability to master this huge challenge," commented Nerlinger. Rummenigge confirmed the club's immense confidence in the ability of the father-of-three: "We foresee a situation next season whereby he takes over the reserve team. Hermann Gerland would then become Jupp Heynckes' second assistant."
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