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Niko Kovac
Gender Male
Ethnic Croatian
Job Croatian Footballer
Desc xxxx

Affiliation

Org Croatia National Team
Club as Player Bayern Munich
  Frankfurt FC

Notes

Bayern Munich 2019 Out-going Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness said interim coach Hansi Flick could be named permanent boss and revealed Niko Kovac was fired because some of their stars wanted him out. Kovac was dismissed by Bayern in the wake of an embarrassing 5-1 thrashing at Eintracht Frankfurt, their worst Bundesliga defeat in 10 years
Hansi Flick Hansi Flick is assistant coach when Germany won the 2014 World Cup

2016 05 16 Retrieve

[To all intents and purposes, Frankfurt were the architects of their own misfortune. Too focused on the single point which would have kept them up. Too cautious and pedestrian] We were too defensive. Then again, little was working for us when we tried to get forward. We had no good possession and gave the ball away a lot. They key, for me, was that Werder won all the second balls

2018 01 29 Retrieve

[Frankfurt manager Niko Kovac on Timothy Chandler] Timmy is doing well, there is no need to switch at the moment, and the guys in the back must and will recommend themselves

2019 04 03 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac on Renato Sanches] It’s not easy for young players from abroad, you have to take that into consideration. He certainly hasn’t forgotten how to play football. He’s not a difficult lad, but he needs affection and support from all sides. Footballers need recognition and to be given confidence just like the rest of us

2019 04 12 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich boss Kovac confirms Coman-Lewandowski training ground fight] There was a fight between two players who were named in the media. The three of us discussed it after training, and both apologised for their behaviour and were sorry for what happened. No one is being fined because both players were understanding, and being understanding is very important now. The matter is done and dusted. No further questions will be answered. Now it’s all about the upcoming game [against Fortuna Dusseldorf on Sunday]

2019 04 04 Retrieve

[Coach Niko Kovac was also frustrated with the defending on show from Bayern despite his side showing character to fight back with 10 men] I’m very upset, because we have many international players, many players who have achieved so much, who play on a very high level in international competitions. And yet, they didn’t manage to control the game to the end like they should. The way it is in Bundesliga and all other leagues, too.

I’m satisfied with the morale the team has shown, with one player down, to come back and go up 4-2, and win it 5-4 in the end. That shows we have a lot of quality. But one thing is for sure and I said it time and again, including at half-time, before the game, during the game, we have to be more compact. Being compact is the very basis for being able to play forward.

But when you concede four goals, I can’t remember someone winning 5-4 in recent history, somebody should check the history books. So, I’m saying, you cannot concede four goals, with all due respect to Heidenheim, that can’t happen.

No matter if it’s the second league, third league, fifth league or first league. That can’t happen. That’s what upsets me, but we won’t play two games like this one within a week. You can be sure of that.

2019 05 11 Retrieve

[Kovac backs Bayern to claim title against his former club] I have always said that I am a friend of VAR. As it turned out, it was probably a very slight offside. For me, the only question in these situations is: when is the stop button pressed? If I do it too late, then it can be offside and if I press too early, then it is not offside.

I think you have to hit this point to one hundredth of a second exactly and I don’t know if that’s possible. But it was offside, and I don’t want to discuss that at all

We have the chance to become champions next week with a point or a victory. Life writes the best stories. I can play against my old club and can try to win the championship. Although, I know Frankfurt have goals in them and they also want to enter European competition, not only in the Europa League but also in the Champions League. It won’t be easy

2019 05 16 Retrieve

[Bayern boss Kovac not interested in sack speculation] These are side issues that I’m not interested in. We now have two tasks to focus on, we could become champions, our full focus is not on what’s being told, I’m not interested. I have a contract that will run for another two years and I want to fulfil that, we have developed well and we only lost twice after the Dusseldorf game

[Kovac was unwilling to divulge whether he would play the long-serving trio, while James Rodriguez and captain Manuel Neuer are ruled out due to injury. We do not have to say too much about the three of them, they did a lot for the club] I will not tell you who’s playing, we want to get the fans excited, it’s a final, I’m pretty sure our team will feel the extra motivation. We hope the spark will jump us over the line.

Javi Martinez will train again tomorrow. [Joshua] Kimmich had a reduced workload today, but everything is fine. Thiago Alcantara is doing well too and already took part in some of yesterday’s session.

Manuel Neuer made good progress. He’s on the road to recovery, but he won’t play on the weekend. James Rodriguez is also still out.

2019 05 25 Retrieve

[Kovac has become the first coach to win back-to-back DFB-Pokal titles, following Eintracht Frankfurt’s win over Bayern in the 2017-18 final] I’m obviously very happy. Leipzig made it very difficult for us and didn’t give us much space. But as time went on we found it easier. I would like to congratulate Manuel Neuer, especially, for his sensational performance

: 2019 07 06 Manuel Neuer is considering leaving Bayern Munich over concerns the squad is not strong enough to match his ambition, his agent Thomas Kroth says

2019 07 09 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac admits Leroy Sane would definitely help improve Bayern Munich] Yes. Full stop. Exclamation mark! He definitely could help us. You saw in the national team and at City what kind of qualities he has

[Kovac spoke out about the difficulties the Bundesliga champions are facing in the current market] We fight against states and billionaires. The players go to Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Dubai. They have much more money at their disposal than a club like FC Bayern

2019 07 10 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac says Mats Hummels’s unwillingness to compete for his spot at Bayern Munich led to his Borussia Dortmund return] Mats did a great job, especially in the second half of the season. Like [Bayern president] Uli Hoeness said, at the end of the season Mats came to us and asked what the status quo was for the new season. Niklas Sule did a great job, he is a starter of the [Germany] national team and with Lucas we bought a player that we want to play centre-back. That doesn’t mean anything. Competition means the best player will play. In that case, Mats wanted to avoid that. We accept that and the result is that he plays for BVB now

2019 07 18 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac summoned positives from Bayern Munich’s first pre-season run-out despite slipping to a 2-1 defeat to Arsenal in California] We saw a very entertaining game with a lot of dynamism and speed. At this stage of the pre-season it is possible for both teams to be very satisfied. Unfortunately, the result didn’t go our way, but I liked what I saw from the team offensively. The viewers got their money’s worth. The result is certainly secondary

2019 07 20 Retrieve

[Nico Kovac has insisted he does not know if Gareth Bale wants to move to the Bundesliga from Real Madrid] I would like my German colleagues [journalists] to listen carefully to what I have to say. [Gareth Bale] is a great player, like other players who are also great players. I can’t tell you whether he really can play somewhere else apart from Real Madrid and if he will even succeed at other clubs. This is something that I don’t know and I can’t really predict

2019 07 20b Retrieve

[Bayern Munich vs Real Madrid. Niko Kovac was relatively satisfied with what was on display from his side, particularly going forward] I liked a lot what I saw on offence. It was an entertaining game with a great deal of dynamism and speed

2019 07 23 Retrieve

[Jerome Boateng had looked headed for the Allianz Arena exit towards the end of last season] Should he stay, which is what looks like happening right now, he will have the same chances as any other player. He is doing very well and I am very happy with his performance so far in pre-season

2019 07 24 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac says Bayern Munich are doing everything within their power to sign dream player Leroy Sane from Manchester City] Our bosses have shown him a clear plan. We are very focused, Leroy knows what to expect here, and when a player with such capacity comes to FC Bayern, he knows his job. You can see that the transfer is not easy. But I know that our people are working very hard to make it happen. We will do everything to realise this transfer. We all know that Leroy Sane is our dream player. The public knows that, we know that

2019 07 26 Retrieve

[Bayern boss Niko Kovac was also pleased with the Jann-Fiete Arp’s displays. He said after his side’s 3-1 victory over Real Madrid] Fiete’s done very well in both games. We want to use pre-season to see him in different positions. He’s very committed in training and in our matches. He makes a lot of effort and tries to do everything right. We’ll see what the future holds for him

: 2019 07 28 Reds manager Klopp is now a three-time Coach of the Year winner in Germany - a feat previously only achieved by Felix Magath. The European champion made for an obvious choice as he finished 44 votes clear of second-placed Friedhelm Funkel, the mastermind behind Fortuna Dusseldorf’s unexpected 10th-place finish in the Bundesliga. Eintracht Frankfurt head coach Adi Hutter pipped Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac to third

2019 07 28b Retrieve

[Bayern Munich head coach Niko Kovac says he remains confident a deal can be done to sign Manchester City winger Leroy Sane] Our club management is very committed behind it and I’m very confident. I assume that we can get it. Leroy is a great footballer who has proved that in England and with the national team

2019 07 30 Retrieve

[Bayern the perfect club for Leroy Sane to explode again] Our bosses have shown him a clear plan. We are very focused, Leroy knows what to expect here, and when a player with such capacity comes to FC Bayern, he knows his job. You can see that the transfer is not easy. But I know that our people are working very hard to make it happen. We will do everything to realise this transfer. We all know that Leroy Sane is our dream player. The public knows that, we know that

2019 07 31 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac says he has apologised to Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola after publicly stating he was confident Bayern Munich would buy Leroy Sane] We [Bayern and him] talked about it. Maybe I was too offensive in that interview. I talked to Pep and apologised because of it. I would like to apologise to the club, too. I will restrain myself in cases like this in the future

2019 08 01 Retrieve

[Coman has been tipped to step up in the absence of the veteran attacking duo and Kovac does not think the knock he took is serious] It does not seem too bad. It was just a kick

2019 08 01b Retrieve

[Reports that Bayern Munich have agreed a deal to sign Leon Bailey from Bayer Leverkusen have been dismissed] I am not responsible for transfers but I have to say something regarding this. I find it extraordinarily strange that you can blurt something out and nothing happens. You can just say something but it’s not true. If you communicate something like this, there must be undeniable proof. Otherwise you cannot spread it as news. I would ask you to check it. It’s not true, it’s not verified. It’s false

[Kovac said recently that he is very confident of signing Leroy Sane this summer, though Rummenigge rebuked the coach for being overzealous. Kovac then backtracked on his comment] We [Bayern and him] talked about it. Maybe I was too offensive in that interview. I talked to Pep Guardiola and apologised because of it. I would like to apologise to the club, too. I will restrain myself in cases like this in the future

2019 08 01c Retrieve

[Bayern’s Kingsley Coman could be fit for Dortmund Supercup clash after escaping serious injury] We hope that it’s not too bad and that he’ll be back in the next few days

2019 08 02 Retrieve

[New signing Sarpreet Singh could be a surprise starter for Bayern Munich in the DFL-Supercup after catching Niko Kovac’s eye in pre-season] He’s a good catch. He was planned for the second team but he’s shown that he’s already a long way ahead of many others. I’m very pleased for him and pleasantly surprised. With him and Alphonso Davies, you can see they are much further ahead of the others in the second team

2019 08 02b Tweet

[Squad news from Niko Kovac] Kingsley Coman is doing well, he will train again today and be there tomorrow, assuming no unexpected turns. Serge Gnabry is feeling better, but he won’t travel. We will try to get him ready to play in the cup

2019 08 03 Retrieve

[Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich. Niko Kovac as he begins his second season in charge at the Allianz Arena] I think it’s a beautiful cup, an important cup and we want to win it. Dortmund have bought well and it’ll be a hard-fought contest. Not everything will work out the way you think it will, you have to take that into consideration. But it’ll certainly be a good game

2019 08 04 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich head coach Niko Kovac lamented his team’s mistakes and wastefulness in their DFL-Supercup defeat to Borussia Dortmund, though he was not dissatisfied with the performance. Reflecting on the result, which saw Kingsley Coman denied twice] Of course, we’re sad we lost the match today. I think we turned in a decent display, not a very good one, but decent. We were dominant, we made two mistakes Dortmund capitalised on. We failed to take our chances, which is why we lost the match. We’re in the fourth week of pre-season. It was the first match where everyone played 90 minutes, you can’t expect more in this situation. I’m not dissatisfied, of course it wasn’t an outstanding performance. We must take our chances and not play into Dortmund’s hands, losing the ball and allowing counters

2019 08 04b Retrieve

[Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich was not taking any of the blame for his stamp on Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho, which left the England youngster in a bandage. His manager, who says he did not see the play, vouched for the 24-year-old’s character] Joshua did not do this on purpose

2019 08 10 Retrieve

[Kovac spoke about the talented playmaker prior to the Super Cup, explaining that Sarpreet Singh and team-mate Alphonso Davies have been fast-tracked to the first team] He’s a good catch. He was planned for the second team but he’s shown that he’s already a long way ahead of many others. I’m very pleased for him and pleasantly surprised. With him and Alphonso Davies, you can see they are much further ahead of the others in the second team

2019 08 10b Retrieve

[Bayern Munich will begin their defence of the DFB-Pokal without midfielder Javi Martinez after head coach Niko Kovac confirmed the Spain international is out with a knee injury] Everyone’s available apart from Javi. Javi Martinez fell on his knee and was in pain, so we’re not taking any risks

[Kovac indicated that close-season signing Lucas Hernandez would not be rushed back into action following his recovery from knee surgery] We’re taking things slow with Lucas.

[He made a long-awaited debut for Bayern in a crushing 23-0 win over local side FC Rottach-Egern. The Frenchman said after that one-sided contest] I feel very well, I’m at 100 per cent. I have no discomfort, I feel physically very well and I’m ready to compete 100 per cent

[Kovac may opt to ignore those comments] The atmosphere in the team is good, the boys get along - on and off the pitch. Cottbus were unfortunately relegated from the third league and we know how difficult it is to play in Cottbus. We have two titles to defend and that’s what we want to do. You don’t achieve anything by sitting back and doing nothing. It’s better to get things done sooner rather than later

2019 08 13 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac revealed Ivan Perisic is poised to join Bayern Munich after undergoing a medical with the Bundesliga champions] He [Ivan Perisic] was at the medical check today. And if all this goes well and the last papers are sent back and forth [with Inter], then he will become one of our players.

[Bayern were hoping to sign Germany international Leroy Sane before the Manchester City star suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury] Regardless of our transfers, there are other clubs that buy players. And I don’t like the way these [players] are handled to some extent when you put them in the second or third category. We should respect each of them. That’s what we stand for and that’s what I stand for. And that’s what I expect from everyone else. Because it’s always easy to criticise someone. First you don’t get this player, then you don’t get the other, and then you have an X, Y or Z solution. I don’t think that’s nice. That’s my personal opinion. Maybe some people share this opinion with me

[Kovac was speaking after defending champions Bayern beat fourth-tier side Energie thanks to goals from Robert Lewandowski, Kingsley Coman and Leon Goretzka] My team did a good job. We could have retained possession a bit more in the second half but taken altogether I’m satisfied. Energie gave it everything, it was a great spectacle. We dominated possession. strangled our opponents but had to watch out for counters again and again. The final pass in the last third must be more precise. We could have done better

2019 08 14 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac is confident Ivan Perisic will make a positive impact after joining Bayern Munich on loan from Inter] I was also the second choice [for Bayern] and we won the double, so … It’s like this: we made this choice all together. We analysed and spoke about a lot of names. He [Perisic] was already on the list. I brought him up back then, because I know Ivan, I know what he’s capable of, I know what kind of skills he has, and we all know what he’s achieved in Germany. Personally, I have a good connection to [Perisic’s former coach] Dieter Hecking, who told me many things from his time in Wolfsburg. And from the national team, I know his status in Croatia. He’s one of the top three players in our national team and as you know, the best player in the world is Croatian [Ballon d’Or winner Luka Modric]. So, Ivan is certainly a top player and I’m happy to have him

[Perisic faces the daunting task of succeeding Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery] He’s very skilled, he’s good with both feet, he’s very aggressive, has a strong header and is a team player. That’s why we reacted immediately, even though we had him on our list before. I’m glad he’s here and I’m sure he’ll give us exactly what we need on the wings - that kind of drive that we need for our play

[Perisic is unavailable for the opening Bundesliga game of the season against Hertha Berlin on Friday due to serving a suspension that carries over from last season] I wish it weren’t the case. But you have to accept the suspension, even though it doesn’t exist in this form in Germany. But if that’s the case, we accept it!

2019 08 14b Retrieve

[Niko Kovac impresses with Sarpreet Singh’s ability] I think that (Singh) was a really good acquisition. Singh is someone who was originally planned for the second team but what he showed in America and in the two games at the Audi Cup in Munich proves that he is a lot further [along] than some of the other players in the second team. So without a doubt he will get the opportunities. I’m very happy with him and I’m surprised. I’m positively surprised and I’m happy about his development

2019 08 16 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich vs Hertha Berlin. Bayern were sent a message in the DFL-Supercup a fortnight ago as they were well beaten 2-0 by their nearest rivals as Paco Alcacer and Jadon Sancho scored second-half goals] It was the first match where everyone played 90 minutes, you can’t expect more in this situation. I’m not dissatisfied, of course it wasn’t an outstanding performance

2019 08 16b Retrieve

[Bayern Munich midfielder Renato Sanches has expressed his frustration with his lack of playing time in his side’s season-opening 2-2 draw against Hertha on Friday] I can not say anything about that, I did not speak to him

2019 08 25 Retrieve

[His coach Niko Kovac was similarly upbeat about Lewandowski, saluting the 31-year-old’s impact on German football] [His performance was] sensationally good, that’s what he’s there for. That’s what he can do. He has already proved in the last five, six, seven years - I don’t know how long he has been in Germany - that he’s the best striker in the Bundesliga. Not only in the last game, but also today. His efficiency and accuracy are unique. We are glad that we have him and I hope that he will continue like this in the next weeks and months

2019 09 01 Retrieve

[Coutinho is being eased into Bayern’s set-up having previously made his club debut off the bench in a 3-0 win over Schalke] We want to build Philippe up and the opportunity presented itself here at home to put him in the starting line-up. He had some good moments, especially on the ball. He played one or two really good passes in behind the defence and we created a great chance from one of them. We know he’s not 100 per cent fit yet, so we planned to give him 60 to 70 minutes here. He’ll regain his fitness by playing. I’m happy with his performance, but I know he’ll improve

2019 09 01b Retrieve

[Kovac laments lethargic Bayern despite Mainz mauling] We were too lethargic until the first cooling break. We didn’t find a reply to Mainz’s aggression, we thought it would be easy. Then our passing was quicker, we lured our opponents into the centre and had good moves on the wings. David Alaba’s goal before the break was crucial. It was over when we scored our fourth goal. We go into the two-week international break happy

2019 09 12 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac is not willing to take any risks with Philippe Coutinho and will assess the Bayern Munich star’s condition when he returns from international duty ahead of facing RB Leipzig] Now we have to wait for Coutinho to come back, then we’ll see how he feels. It was important that he played two games [for Brazil] but, of course, such a long journey is exhausting and we have a very good alternative with Thomas. I cannot say what that will mean at the weekend. I have to wait and see the status of Philippe. Every player has to be at 100 per cent. We need physically fresh and motivated players. We will talk to the players and we will also have King [Coman] and Coco [Tolisso]. If someone feels they are not [ready], it would be reckless not to say so.

Julian Nagelsmann is a very good, young coach. Leipzig were already very good. Now, Julian brings with him some other knowledge that will make the team even better. Leipzig are still top - after the match, we want to be. At the beginning of the season, there is one game week after week and we have started well, although I’m annoyed by the two points we lost against Hertha Berlin. We want to position ourselves at the top and that’s what the game against Leipzig is all about. The past three games last season were all narrow results; 1-0, 0-0 and the DFB-Pokal final was only 1-0 up to 75 minutes [Bayern won 3-0]. These are tight matches. It’ll be like that this weekend, too. We are facing good players, but we are the German champions and will play with the confidence that we want to win

[Kovac was reluctant to place a timescale on his return] He’s fine, the operation went well. We hope he’ll come back as soon as possible, but we cannot name an exact day or week

2019 09 16 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac has called on his side to be more ruthless after they were held 1-1 by RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga on Saturday] We have to do more with our superiority. In the end, the result is annoying. We had more chances, played well, but unfortunately two points less than planned. We played sensationally in the first half, that was the best performance so far. After that, we got ourselves into trouble. We’re pulling the positives out of the game - we played a really good game

2019 09 17 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac has confirmed David Alaba will miss up to three weeks with the thigh tear he suffered on Saturday] David will be out for two, maximum three weeks. Obviously, David is a really important player for us. Unfortunately he’s going to be out for a couple of weeks but Lucas Hernandez won the World Cup in that position. He has a different interpretation of how to play at left-back than David does but he does a very good job. Alphonso Davies can play in that position, that’s actually why we fielded him against Leipzig. He didn’t play as a left-back but we fielded him so that he could work together with Lucas. Tomorrow is a Champions League game, it might be a bit different

[One man who could benefit from Alaba’s injury is Jerome Boateng] I keep saying the same thing about Jerome Boateng - he’s a part of this team and as a part of this team I treat him like everyone else. Everyone has the right to play here. Jerome didn’t play a lot in the last couple of weeks, however, on Saturday he had to play from the first moment to the last and it was a class performance. I want to emphasise that. Of course, I have a lot of very good players. It was his first game [in the Bundesliga] and he played 90 minutes. That’s a different rhythm from someone who plays once or twice a week. We’ll have to see how he copes. I am happy with him and he will get chances to play, that’s all I can say really

2019 09 19 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac believes Philippe Coutinho has brought another dimension to the team after he impressed in their Champions League win over Red Star Belgrade] He played a really good game and with his football intelligence he brings another dimension to our game. I think we can be very happy. The team has been very focused and we scored three goals, that’s befitting

2019 09 26 Retrieve

[Bayern initially gave no timescale for Goretzka’s recovery but Kovac does not expect his return to be imminent] David Alaba has trained today, it looks good. Let’s see how it develops tomorrow [Friday] with him. Leon Goretzka still takes a bit longer. I expect [he will return] only after the international break

[Kovac had previously stated on Alaba, when suggesting that he may be forced to sit out a meeting with Spurs] Obviously, David is a really important player for us. Unfortunately he’s going to be out for a couple of weeks but Lucas Hernandez won the World Cup in that position. He has a different interpretation of how to play at left-back than David does but he does a very good job. Alphonso [Davies] can play in that position, that’s actually why we fielded him against Leipzig. He didn’t play as a left-back but we fielded him so that he could work together with Lucas.

[Meanwhile, Jann-Fiete Arp is yet to make his Bundesliga debut for Bayern after joining from Hamburg] We will have to wait on what the doctors say before we can determine when he will return to full training again. It is difficult. You have to be careful that the bone grows together again. Shocks and jolts could complicate things, so we need to see what the doctors say so we know when to train again. Fiete has gotten the time from us and will continue to get it. We try to make him better every day in training, but you cannot expect too much from him. He may have been hyped up a bit too much at a young age, you have to be patient with him

2019 09 30 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich coach Niko Kovac has hailed Harry Kane as an equal to Robert Lewandowski ahead of his side’s Champions League trip to Tottenham] His quality in the Premier League and for England squad speaks for itself. He’s sensational and he can do it all. He’s good at holding up and good with his head. There’s nothing he cannot do. He’s a very strong striker. Him and Lewandowski are probably in the top two, three or four in the world. I will see how things pan out tomorrow. I will give my team some information on Kane

[Despite an indifferent start to the season from Mauricio Pochettino’s side, Kovac believes Tottenham’s development in recent seasons sets a perfect example for other clubs] It is going to be a tough game in a top stadium. The atmosphere will be amazing. I think it was three years ago when I was here in February, when I watched them in the old stadium against Swansea City. You can see what it means when you have good leadership and manager. In my option, Tottenham is a very positive light in European football. They are now able to compete with the big teams, even though it didn’t look like that six or seven years ago. [Pochettinno] has done a great job and this is an example for others that patience is important. All the players are world class and we know [the challenge] we will face

2019 10 01 Retrieve

[Kovac’s side are now unbeaten in their eight matches since losing the German Super Cup, and have not shied away from scoring - netting 17 times in their last five games in all competitions] In my option, Tottenham is a very positive light in European football. They are now able to compete with the big teams, even though it didn’t look like that six or seven years ago. [Pochettino] has done a great job and this is an example for others that patience is important. All the players are world class and we know [the challenge] we will face

[He went on to highlight the attacking threat of Harry Kane, who he compared to his star forward Robert Lewandowski] Kane’s quality in the Premier League and for England squad speaks for itself. He’s sensational and he can do it all. He’s good at holding up and good with his head. There’s nothing he cannot do. He’s a very strong striker. Him and Robert Lewandowski are probably in the top two, three or four in the world. I will see how things pan out tomorrow. I will give my team some information on Kane

2019 10 02 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac was left astonished by Bayern Munich’s 7-2 battering of Tottenham in the Champions League on Tuesday] Nobody could dream of this result. We knew what to expect in London and we experienced that in the first 25 minutes. Tottenham put a lot of pressure on us, but luckily Manuel Neuer kept us in the game. After that, my team did very well. Of course, the second goal was extremely important for us. At half-time, we once again tightened a few things and then we played as I imagine and wish. Above all, we took all the opportunities we created

[Although Kovac was eager to laud the collective, he could not ignore the performance of Gnabry] First of all, I would like to emphasise that was a great moment for the whole team, but of course, especially for Serge Gnabry. He was really fantastic. He showed what I expect from him. Not only in attack, because I know what he can do, but also in the defensive phase

2019 10 02b Retrieve

[Bayern coach Niko Kovac made a note of praising his entire team’s performance but conceded Serge Gnabry really impressed] First of all I would like to emphasise that this was a great moment for the whole team. But of course, especially for Serge. Really fantastic. He showed today what I expect from him. Not only in the game going forward, because I know what he can do, but also in the game without the ball

2019 10 03 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac cautioned his Bayern Munich players against losing focus following their brilliant 7-2 hammering of Tottenham in the Champions League] We need to keep our concentration. We played the Champions League finalists on Tuesday. We had problems for 25 or 30 minutes then we dominated. We can’t dominate for 90 minutes. It was a great game from us but we need to put in the same performance against Hoffenheim as we did against Tottenham. We want to remain objective, humble and continue to work

We’ve got a good group of players that are growing closer together. The players are absorbing more and more what we want to see from them. I’ve been noticing this for a while now. But we haven’t achieved anything yet

We’ve got a good group of players that are growing closer together. The players are absorbing more and more what we want to see from them. I’ve been noticing this for a while now. But we haven’t achieved anything yet

2019 10 17 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac accepts he made a mistake with comments that suggested Thomas Muller would be left on the fringes of the first team. Kovac claims to have already spoken to Muller in private to clarify his comments] I cannot say who will play at the weekend - as for the statement, it was a mistake of mine. I incorrectly articulated my thoughts, but I disproved my own statement with the fact Thomas has been coming [into matches] recently. I spoke with Thomas the next day, everything was cleared up and he understood it the way I meant it, so I made a mistake - it happens to me too, that’s life.

We talked about it, but no matter which player it is, everyone who doesn’t play is unhappy. I have to make decisions as a coach and I can’t start more than 11 players, I have to find the team I think can win the game. For people from the outside, a coach basically does nothing right. I won’t let myself be guided. We have our own ideas and we will implement those

2019 10 23 Retrieve

[On Lucas Hernandez, who was seen leaving the stadium on crutches] Hernandez has problems with his ankle. We have to see whether the ligament was also affected. He has severe pain on the inside of his ankle; that’s why we had to take him out. It’s very frustrating

Javi Martinez had a muscular problem in the first half, we didn’t want to take any risks, so we reacted

Our opponents did a really good job today. They put up a fight over 90 minutes in a great atmosphere here at the stadium. At the end of the day it was a hard-earned victory. We’re still satisfied because we now have nine points, we have one foot in the last sixteen. That’s our goal

2019 10 24 Retrieve

[The mercurial midfielder Coutinho was unable to affect the Champions League clash in any meaningful way, but Kovac defended his performance] At the moment he lacks a little bit of luck. He always has good actions. I am very satisfied with his performance as well as with the performance of the others

2019 10 25 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac has played down talk that he is close to being sacked by Bayern Munich after coming in for criticism from chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge] When he spoke about carelessness, everyone knows what he meant. Everyone expects wins - and beautiful football. We expect that too. But you cannot always play nice football. First and foremost, you have to be successful. We’re struggling defensively at the moment. We’re making too many individual mistakes. We have to win our duels and minimise the opponents’ chances, then we’ll win our games quieter than on Tuesday. I can tell you, I’m in contact with my bosses, this storm is being blown in from outside, so I’m quite relaxed. The experience over the past year has been very helpful to me

[However, with the title rivals due to meet in two weeks, Kovac has questioned why Favre’s job is supposedly on the line] We’re on matchday eight and the coach’s future is already being discussed. It’s not just Bayern, but also other clubs. We talk about respect, but this has got nothing to do with respect. Lucien has the same points tally as us, has lost one game in the Champions League, and they’re still in the [domestic] cup - yet names of possible replacements are already being mentioned. I don’t understand. Sometimes the views of a minority is portrayed as majority. You have to be careful

[The biggest shining light for Bayern this term has been the incredible form of Robert Lewandowski, who scored for the 12th game running in the victory over Olympiacos] I think that he is playing the season of his life. He enjoys a high status at the club. He is physically in top shape. That gives him the necessary concentration in front of the goal. We are glad to have him

2019 10 27 Retrieve

[Bayern had drawn and lost their previous two league matches before Pavard and Lewandowski saw off visiting Union] Now we have the place we want. We are now first in the Bundesliga. Robert Lewandowski has set a Bundesliga record. That’s nice. I’m glad that we all got out of the game healthy today. Because you know what I mean [because of the many injured].

I know we can still do better. If you look at the games from the last few weeks, it’s always close games where we only are one goal in front at the end. It’s not so easy to get out of the game in a relaxed way. We can still improve, we have to improve. We have to do the little things better. We shouldn’t have to make so many mistakes in the construction and acceptance of the ball. We have to make better decisions at the end of the goal and at the lead with the ball. We can do that even better. That’s why I’m happy, but not absolutely happy

2019 10 28 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich coach Niko Kovac says his side cannot play the same style as Liverpool because the squad is not capable] What Liverpool did yesterday showed that they deserved to win the Champions League, but you also have to have the types of players. We must accommodate what we have. You can’t try to go 200 [km/h] on the Autobahn when you can only go 100. You simply must accommodate what we have. We have different player types. We must find the right mix and I find that our Gegenpressing is also good, and, of course, it can always get better

[Kovac believes the extra time makes a big difference, pointing out that Klopp has at Liverpool] What are we talking about, eh? About continuity. About time. Which apparently you no longer have in football

2019 10 29 Retrieve

[Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac questioned his side’s attitude after they needed a stroke of luck to edge past second-tier strugglers Bochum 2-1 in the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday] It was all wrong for 60, 70 minutes. The fact that we played so many bad passes, in my opinion, has something to do with the attitude … it has nothing to do with tactics. It has to do with the attitude. There were too many players who played bad passes

After Philippe Coutinho and Thomas Muller came on, things improved. And in the end we got that little bit of luck against Bochum, who really played so well

2019 11 01 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac says he will continue to be honest despite angering Bayern Munich supporters by suggesting former club Eintracht Frankfurt have the best fans in Germany] I watched three of their [Europa League] qualifying games at the beginning of the season - there was some great choreography and I thought it was great. We also have great fans. I felt that last season, especially towards the end against Frankfurt and also in the cup when my name was chanted. I know how important the fans are for us. I did not say we have bad fans - they are also great. But in the big picture, Frankfurt have a great and unique atmosphere unlike anywhere else in the Bundesliga. I will not change myself or my character. If honesty is no longer desirable in this day and age, we can pack it in. I will not change

[Kovac questioned the attitude of his players following their comeback win at Bochum] [Bochum] had a huge chance after 40 seconds. I expect my side to be ready from the first minute. We know we have the quality, but we have to work the same as others

Football is a sport that is results-oriented, but the best combination is to win and play well. We are not able to do that right now. We have to gain confidence through small victories. If you lose the ball five times, it will be difficult to offer yourself a sixth time and then your knees will start to shake, so you have to try to get into a rhythm right from the beginning

2019 11 01b Retrieve

[When asked if Thomas Muller could play alongside Coutinho] That would be too attacking. Both players have their own qualities getting forward, but we need a good balance. I haven’t ruled it out altogether, but at the moment it’s not an option

2019 11 02 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac gave a spiky press conference after his Bayern Munich team went down to a shocking 5-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in which they played more than 80 minutes with ten men] What do you want to know? We got a red card and lost. We got a red card and if you play with ten players for 80 minutes, it will be difficult in Frankfurt. Other teams have already found this out. It wasn’t easy today. But you cannot lose even with a man less, this is disappointing and annoying

[Pressure was already mounting on the 48-year-old Kovac after Bayern’s disappointing start to the season] How should I know about [my future] you probably know better. I cannot say anything about that. My feelings are not important, those who decide must be asked

[Kocac is aware of the criticism that dogs him, but said he’s not going to give in to it] I haven’t given up before and I am not going to give up now. Someone once said to me, ‘When it comes to such a situation, you must not get restless’. I go to the bus sad and disappointed and I know the business; I’m not starry-eyed. But I will not give up

2019 11 02b Retrieve

[After Bayern Munich’s defeat 5-1 to Eintracht Frankfurt, the pressure mounts on Niko Kovac] I did not give up last season and I will not give up now. When it comes to such situations, you must not get restless. I leave here sad and disappointed. I’m not starry-eyed - I know the business. But I will not give up

[Kovac stressed Bayern Munich’s early red card on Saturday made salvaging any positive result difficult] What do you want to know? We got a red card and lost. We got a red card and if you play with ten players for 80 minutes, it will be difficult in Frankfurt. Other teams have already found this out. It wasn’t easy today. But you cannot lose even with a man less, this is disappointing and annoying

2019 11 03 Retrieve

[Bayern sack manager Kovac after Frankfurt humiliation] I think this is the right decision for the club at the moment. The results, and also the way we last played, made me come to that decision. My brother Robert and I thank Bayern for the last one-and-a-half years. During this time, our team has won the championship, the DFB Cup and the Supercup. It was a good time. I wish the club and the team all the best

2019 11 04 Retrieve

[Niko and Robert Kovac’s farewell message to FC Bayern Munich’s staff] Dear associates of FC Bayern

You have certainly already heard the news: our time as coach/assistant coach of our club is at an end. Since it is difficult to say goodbye personally to over 1000 colleagues, and we would like to give the team the necessary peace and concentration before the two important games against Olympiacos Piraeus and Borussia Dortmund, we have chosen this way by email

We say ‘Dankeschön’ from the bottom of our heart. You all have welcomed me and my brother warmly at Säbener Straße, were always there for us, and constantly supported us during this time, wherever we needed help

We thank you all for many personal encounters and conversations. Winning the championship, the DFB-Pokal, and the Supercup together will remain a pleasant memory for all of us

To all of you personally, to the club, and to our team, we wish all the very, very best!

We naturally will continue to follow FC Bayern as fans!

All the best, and cordial greetings

Niko and Robert Kovac

2019 11 07 Retrieve

[Niko Kovac left his role as Bayern Munich coach on good enough terms with the players that any of them would be able to meet up with him for a coffee] My brother Robert Kovac and I would like to thank FC Bayern for these past 18 months. During that time our team won the Bundesliga, the DFB Cup and the Supercup. It was a good time. I with the club and the team all the very best

2020 02 25 Retrieve

[Former Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac says David Alaba could play anywhere in the world] David Alaba can play anywhere in the world. But he ultimately has to make that decision himself. I can only say from my own experience that if you go somewhere else, you can achieve another boost

I assume that there will be something again in the summer, so I’m preparing for it. National coaching is certainly a nice job, but daily work is a lot more fun. I am ready to go where I feel valued and where I feel that something can happen