The European Champions will be at great loss if they leave Thiago Alcantara to join the English club Liverpool, but the ex-Bayern boss Hitzfeld, hopes Flick can persuade Alaba to stay.
The two times winner of the “World Coach of the year” tittle, Ottmar Hitzfeld has weighed in on the futures of two current stars
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A man who enjoyed two spells at the Allianz Arena at the height of his managerial career has admitted that Liverpool-linked midfielder Thiago Alcantara will be a huge loss for his old club, but the former Bayern Munich Manager is still believed that Hansi Flick can convince David Alaba to stay put.
Both Thiago and Alaba played a key role in Bayern’s run to the treble in 2019-20, with their final outings of the season coming in a Champions League final victory over the French Ligue 1 Champions on Sunday.
The Spanish Midfielder’s appearance in the showpiece is expected to be his last for Bayern, as he gears up to undertake a new challenge away from Germany.
Thiago has turned down his contract extension from the club, as confirmed by Bayern CEO, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, and the Liverpool can do anything possible to bring the Midfielder to Anfield next summer.
The German champions are reportedly willing to sanction the 31-year-old’s departure if their €30 million (£27m/$35m) valuation is met, and although the club have yet to receive any formal offers, Hitzfeld is resigned to seeing a prized asset walk through the Allianz Arena exits
“That is, of course, a loss for Bayern” Hitzfeld said when asked how much Flick’s squad will be weakened if Thiago departs in the coming weeks
“After not always being able to call upon his [full repertoire of] skills at the beginning of the season, he has developed and improved a lot, like the entire team.”
The 28-year-old only has one year left to run on his current contract, and is reportedly open to a transfer after spending his entire career to date in the German Bundesliga.
Hitzfeld concedes Alaba’s sale would make sense financially, but he would still like to see Flick convince a versatile performer to extend his stay at Bayern.
“Of course, he’s one of the pillars of the team and has been playing outstandingly for months. It was an excellent decision for Hansi Flick to move Alaba into central defence,” said the 71-year-old.
“Whether he stays or not is certainly also a financial question. On the other hand, I think he knows how much he appreciates Bayern.”
Hitzfeld went on to praise Flick for his key impact in the club since replacing Niko Kovac in the Bayern hot seat.
“He worked hard and achieved something sensational in the new position as head coach. Hansi Flick took this opportunity and is the father of the success,” he said.
“In addition to his sporting competence, he is primarily characterised by his human qualities, because he is an absolute team player and has an open ear for all employees.
“Flick can shape an era with this Bayern generation, like the one which won the European Cup in 1974, 1975 and 1976.”
The retired German manager also expressed his belief that Thomas Muller was the standout player for Bayern last season, highlighting his contribution as a leader on and off the pitch.
“Thomas Muller rose like a phoenix from the ashes and is one of the most important drivers of the team” he added.
“He has the Bayern gene and is someone who takes on the mantle in the dressing room and on the pitch.
“You need such players as a coach and that is what Muller does excellently, as you saw in the final. He didn’t have any big moments, but he was very important to the team.”