Bayern Munich have confirmed they have parted ways with head coach Niko Kovac.
The former central midfielder for the Bavarian club had been in his second season at the club, but his dismissal comes after a humiliating 5-1 hammering at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday. Defeat leaves the defending champions four points behind surprise leaders Borussia Monchengladbach after 10 games.
Assistant coach Hans-Dieter Flick will take charge of the first team for this week’s UEFA Champions League clash against Olympiacos, whilst the club find Kovac’s long-term replacement.
Bayern Munich CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge explained:
“The performances of our team in recent weeks and the results have shown us that there was a need for action. Uli Hoeneß, Hasan Salihamidzic and I had an open and serious discussion with Niko this Sunday based on that and came to the mutual decision that Niko is no longer head coach of FC Bayern. We all regret this development. I would like to thank Niko Kovac on behalf of FC Bayern for his work, particularly for last season’s double win.”
Niko Kovac was confirmed as the Bayern Munich head coach towards the end of the 2017-18 campaign, where he had been in charge of Eintracht Frankfurt. He guided the Eagles to the DFB Pokal final that season where he beat his future employers to lift the trophy.
The former Croatian international became only the fourth former player to coach the German giants, after Søren Lerby, Franz Beckenbauer and Jürgen Klinsmann.
He won all three domestic trophies in his first season – the 2018 Super Cup, the Bundesliga, and beating RB Leipzig 3-0 in the 2019 DFB Pokal.
Niko Kovac stated:
“I think this is the correct decision for the club at this time. The results and the way we’ve played lately have led me to this decision. My brother Robert 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 wish the club and the team all the very best.”