Heynckes look­ing for the per­fect Bay­ern farewell

The Star Late Edition - - SPORT -

JUPP Heynckes would like to bow out at Bay­ern Mu­nich with an­other league and cup dou­ble while his re­place­ment Niko Ko­vac also wants to leave Ein­tra­cht Frank­furt on a high in to­mor­row’s Ger­man Cup fi­nal.

Any talk of split loy­al­ties for Ko­vac has been quashed by both sides, with a school of thought say­ing the Croa­t­ian is even more des­per­ate to win, be­cause if Bay­ern clinch the dou­ble he will have ex­tra pres­sure to at least re­peat the feat next sea­son.

Frank­furt were an­noyed with Bay­ern for ap­proach­ing Ko­vac just as they were en­ter­ing the end-spurt of the sea­son. Re­sults in the Bun­desliga fell away, mean­ing they fin­ished eighth and must now win the Cup to get into the Europa League.

If Frank­furt lose, VfB Stuttgart will head to Europe hav­ing ended a roller­coaster sea­son in sev­enth.

Frank­furt missed out on sev­enth af­ter a 1-0 loss to Schalke on Satur­day in the fi­nal Bun­desliga game of the sea­son.

“We have to tick off the game and for­get it,” Ko­vac said. “I hope we will have more look on Satur­day in the fi­nal.”

While Ko­vac will be cen­tre stage for some at Ber­lin’s Olympic Sta­dium, the day will be­long to re­tir­ing Bay­ern coach Heynckes.

The 73-year-old thought he had re­tired be­fore, af­ter lead­ing Bay­ern to a tre­ble in 2013, but came back as an emer­gency stop-gap in Septem­ber fol­low­ing the sack­ing of Carlo Ancelotti.

Cham­pi­ons League glory has es­caped him this time but fin­ish­ing off with a Cup tri­umph hav­ing strolled to the Bun­desliga ti­tle would still be a fit­ting end for one of the gen­tle­men of the game.

Their Bun­desliga ti­tle party last Satur­day was slightly soured by a 4-1 home de­feat by Stuttgart but Heynckes was un­ruf­fled.

“In Ber­lin you will see a dif­fer­ent Bay­ern,” he said.

His play­ers will do every­thing to give him a proper send-off.

“I think if we win the Cup fi­nal, the coach will be happy. Jupp is a great, where the word leg­end is ap­pro­pri­ate,” said de­fender Mats Hum­mels, who is a slight doubt with a foot in­jury.

Thomas Mueller also skipped train­ing yes­ter­day be­cause of a stom­ach virus.

A big­ger doubt is the pres­ence of goal­keeper Manuel Neuer, out since Septem­ber with a bro­ken foot but now back in full train­ing.

He is des­per­ate to prove his fit­ness to keep his Ger­many World Cup place but me­dia re­ports sug­gest Sven Ul­re­ich will re­main in goal against Frank­furt, with Neuer hop­ing two World Cup warm-up games will be enough to con­vince Joachim Loew.

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