19 May 2004
STUTTGART – Felix Magath confirmed on Wednesday that he had signed a contract as coach of Bayern Munich and that negotiations were held to get him on 1 July, one year earlier than originally planned.
“What can I say, it’s true,” Magath told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.
Magath, who is currently at VfB Stuttgart, confirmed a statement from Munich manager Uli Hoeness the previous evening that he had signed a contract in Munich as of 1 July 2005.
Neither Magath nor Hoeness gave further details.
With current Munich coach Ottmar Hitzfeld told that he has to leave this summer instead of 2005, Munich are now talking with Stuttgart about getting Magath after the end of this season.
It is expected that details will be finalised after the weekend season finale.
Munich will likely have to pay Stuttgart a transfer fee for getting Magath this year, plus a compensation fee for Hitzfeld for sacking him a year before the end of his deal.
Hitzfeld, 55, joined Munich in 1998 and was the club’s most successful trainer with the 2001 Champions League trophy, Intercontinental Cup, four Bundesliga crowns and two German cups.
But Munich’s form has declined this season and they will finish without a trophy.
Coming off successive defeats against champions Werder Bremen and Stuttgart, they must now win in Saturday’s last game against Freiburg to secure second place and with it direct entry into the Champions League.
Magath, 50, meanwhile, came to Stuttgart in 2001 and formed a young team which finished second last season and currently ranks third in the league.
Subject: German news