Berlin (AFP) – Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich have been criticised for last weekend’s two-day “team-building” trip to Ibiza immediately after Saturday’s shock defeat at Mainz.
A week after being crowned Bundesliga champions for the 10th straight season, Bayern crashed to a 3-1 loss at mid-table Mainz, who also hit the woodwork four times in a deserved win.
Right after the game the majority of the Bayern squad flew to the Spanish island of Ibiza for a two-day break on Sunday and Monday, which sports director Hasan Salihamidzic had sanctioned as a “team-building measure”.
Germany legend and former Bayern midfielder Lothar Matthaeus told Sky he felt that the trip to the party island “isn’t on. Especially after a game like that.”
Matthaeus, a 1990 World Cup winner, said it reflects badly on the players, as well as Salihamidzic and CEO Oliver Kahn.
He pointed out that Bayern fans were already angry about the manner of the defeat, “then the players go on holiday”.
Matthaeus suggested Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann should have been “tougher” and vetoed the trip.
According to reports, not all of the Bayern squad went with eight players sitting out, including captain Manuel Neuer, Thomas Mueller, who was ill, Kingsley Coman, Dayot Upamecano and Marcel Sabitzer.
Veteran Bundesliga coach Felix Magath, who guided Bayern to consecutive league titles in 2004-05 and 2005-06, said the timing was wrong.
“I would not have allowed a trip like that,” he said.
“I don’t know how a team can say: ‘For us the season doesn’t go to the end, we finish three weeks early.'”
The 68-year-old, currently in charge of Bundesliga strugglers Hertha Berlin, has a vested interest in Bayern’s form.
Stuttgart, who are one place below Hertha in the league table and also fighting to avoid relegation, play Bayern in Munich this Sunday.
Salihamidzic has promised Bayern will put in a good display for their final home match this season.
“It’s absolutely clear that our players will give their all against Stuttgart in order to give our fans a nice end to the season as champions in their own stadium with a victory.”
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