Thomas Tuchel calls for Germany to stand up to right-wing extremism

By Sports Desk January 20, 2024

Bayern Munich boss Thomas Tuchel has backed planned demonstrations against right-wing extremism in Germany as he prepares his players for their Bundesliga clash with Werder Bremen.

The club’s honorary president Uli Hoeness made a statement against Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party during a memorial ceremony for the nation’s football great Franz Beckenbauer on Friday, while Bayer Leverkusen head coach Xabi Alonso and Freiburg counterpart Christian Streich have also spoken out.

Asked about the protests at his pre-match press conference, Tuchel said: “We can’t stand up enough.

“There’s no doubt about fighting against all forms of extremism, but obviously also against right-wing extremism in particular given the discussion and our history. There can be no doubt there.”

Tuchel’s comments came a day after Germany paid an emotional tribute to Beckenbauer, who won the World Cup both as a player and a manager.

He said: “Franz was in the same league as Pele and Diego Maradona – you can’t get bigger than that.

“It was a nice, respectful and dignified service. The speeches were very powerful.”

Bayern returned to action after the league’s winter break with a 3-0 victory over Hoffenheim last Saturday and head into Sunday’s fixture sitting in second place behind Bayer Leverkusen with a game in hand.

Tuchel, who confirmed loan signing Eric Dier will be in the squad, said: “It’s obviously a classic fixture that had a huge allure when I was a kid.

“There’s always a special energy and lots of goals. Bremen have a special way of playing, always looking to attack.

“It’s about three points. We’ll adjust everything for what’s best for us to get the three points.”

Bremen head coach Ole Werner, who will be without suspended duo Marvin Ducksch and Leonardo Bittencourt, knows his team will have to be at their best to extend a four-game unbeaten run.

Werner told a press conference: “We need to be on our A game throughout the full 90 and hope that Bayern aren’t at their absolute best. That being said, we’re preparing for the challenge with what we have available to us.

“We’ll have to mentally adapt to having less possession than we usually would. In the moments where we do have the ball, we have to make the most of our chances.

“We could dwell forever on the fact that Bayern are the league front-runners, but it’s important that we just focus on ourselves.”

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