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Hoeneß: 'We're in paradise here'

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Hoeneß: 'We're in paradise here'

Postby FCBayernNews » Sun Jan 07, 2007 8:00 pm


Bayern's annual winter training camp always coincides with Uli Hoeneß's birthday, although the situation is not always the same as this year, when the long-serving general manager's 55th special day dawned as he sat in the Lufthansa plane winging its way towards Dubai. However, the board director had no time for a major celebration in the Emirate on the Persian gulf. "A glass of champagne after dinner, and that'll be it," he declared, "this is a training camp focused on hard work, not partying."

Hoeneß still managed to spare a few minutes to meet <b></b> out on the terrace at the Jumeirah Emirate Towers hotel, again serving as the team base for the winter workout. The 55-year-old revealed his thoughts on the club's goals at the training camp, new signing Jan Schlaudraff, and Owen Hargreaves' uncertain future.

<b>Interview: Uli Hoeneß</b>

<b></b> Uli Hoeneß, what's your assessment of the season so far, and what are you hoping for in the rest of the campaign?

<b><i>Uli Hoeneß:</i></b> "We were very inconsistent at the start of the season, but I feel the turning point came with our win in Leverkusen. We played some decent football in the run-up to Christmas. Provided we prepare ourselves well here in Dubai, we have a good chance of success this term. I could well imagine us still being in a position to win the title."

<b></b> How important is the training camp in Dubai?

<b><i>Hoeneß:</i></b> "We've always enjoyed it here. We've been here three times, we've been pretty successful every time, and hopefully it'll be the same this year. The conditions here are excellent, and the players can concentrate totally on their work. We're in paradise here."

<b></b> Bayern have agreed terms with striker Jan Schlaudraff for next season. What do you expect from the player?

<b><i>Hoeneß:</i></b> "He gets stuck in, he's not afraid to dribble past his man, he'll take on a goalkeeper and look to finish a move. We're seeing these qualities less and less in the Bundesliga, and everywhere in the world. That's what I like about him."

<b></b> Was there a sense in which the signing was a signal to your rivals, that you have what it takes to bring in the players you want?

<b><i>Hoeneß:</i></b> "Let's be careful here and not believe everything put out by the media. They'll tell you Werder Bremen are doing everything right, and that young players never make it at Bayern. What about the wonderful examples of Lahm, Ottl, Schweinsteiger, all youngsters from within our own ranks. I think it's good when a young players chooses to accept the challenge posed by Bayern Munich, and isn't put off by the cat-calling."

<b></b> We all know Owen Hargreaves favours a switch to Manchester United. Aren't you sick and tired of the subject – if it is in fact a subject for discussion?

<b><i>Hoeneß:</i></b> "I'm not sick and tired of it, because I'm well aware the media have to publish something when there's no football. The facts are relatively simple: the ball's in our court. Owen has said he'd like to go there, but there's been no breakdown in relations between Owen and Bayern. Our relationship remains completely intact. He's under contract to us until 2010. If we decide he has to stay, he'll continue to play for us. And if we do eventually come round to agreeing a transfer, the situation will change, although that's not the way it looks at the moment."

<b></b> And what of the much-quoted €30 million offer from Manchester?

<b><i>Hoeneß:</i></b> "It doesn't exist. The people in charge at United have indicated they'd very much like to have the player, but up to this day, there have been no formal negotiations, because we've given no indication we're prepared to talk. All the sums we're hearing about are made up, just like the €30 million we're supposed to be spending on a striker. It's all pure speculation. None of these figures have any kind of basis in fact."
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