The Bavarian fan-favourite also spoke about their realistic targets this season.
After a sublime 0-3 victory against FC Schalke away from home, where Robert Lewandowski bagged a hat-trick, Bayern Munich’s Thomas Müller spoke to the visiting Indian media contingent in the mixed zone at the Veltins-Arena.
The FIFA World Cup and UEFA Champions League winner spoke on a variety of topics including Bayern’s expectations going into the season and on the importance of a nationwide fan-following for the game of football.
Muller was full of praise for the squad and how Bayern München had complimented it over the summer. Talking about the added quality and depth he said, “The squad now, yes it’s much better.
We have more players with high quality. So, when the Champions League games arrive and we have a busy schedule during the week, the coach has many options and we can take on good teams. I think we are strong enough.”
When asked about his reflection about the Champions League campaign last season, Muller admitted that there was a sense of trepidation about the squad when they drew Liverpool and that worked against them.
“Last year, we were a bit scared about going out after the group stage in the first round against Liverpool. But yes, this year we want to go forward and maybe reach the final. That’s our goal. In the Champions League, anything can happen and you need a fit squad during March, April.”
The German international spoke about how important Arjen Robben and Franck Ribéry were to the dressing room and how their absence will leave big footsteps that need to be followed up. “The last 9, 10, 11 years with Robben and Ribery were special. They left big footsteps and we have young and very talented players (referring to Kingsley Coman and Serge Gnabry) to step in and fill these shoes.”
Watch: Thomas Muller talks to Indian media in Germany
When asked about India, a pleasant smile settled across his face. “There were a lot of people there and it was so nice to be there.”
Muller then shared the crazy obsession that Germany has with football. “I think the whole country loves this sport. Maybe like in India it’s with cricket. I don’t know exactly, but I think it’s almost the same. The workers on Monday (after the league games), they talk about football.
The workers in various companies on Thursday, after the Champions League games, they talk about football. Football in Germany is very important. It’s always on the news and the people love to watch it on the weekends. It is a very emotional sport and is a game where anything can happen. I think that’s the key point of football.”
The media interaction drew to a close with the Bavarians’ ace addressing the fans back in India. “We hope that they will support us. We have big plans for this season again after winning the double last year. We want to reach the final of the Champions League and the fans in India will be happy to look forward to us playing good football and we also want good results.”