Bayern Munich suffered an unexpected 1-3 defeat to Porto in the Champions League quarterfinal first leg match, and the shock of the defeat has already had repercussions – German doctor Hans-Wilhelm Müller-Wohlfahrt, who has worked at Bayern since 1977, has ended his 38-year-old association with the club after being blamed for the loss.
The renowned doctor released a statement saying: “After the Champions League match of Bayern Munich against Porto, the medical department was for some inexplicable reason made primarily responsible. The bond of trust has been damaged.”
Muller-Wohlfahrt, renowned as a world leader in his field, has worked with the German national team as well as athletes including Usain Bolt and Boris Becker – apart from his association of almost four decades with Bayern Munich.
Three members of Bayern’s medical staff have followed Müller-Wohlfahrt into resigning – his son Kilian, and Peter Ueblacker and Lutz Hänsel.
The doctor had quit once before in 2008, after an argument with coach Jurgen Klinsmann. In the aftermath of that event, it was Klinsmann who had left the club, thus paving the way back for the doctor to return.
Bayern players’ legs don’t last long: Guardiola
Bayern had reached their eighth quarterfinal in the past nine years with a resounding 7-0 win over Shakhtar Donetsk, but have a lot of work to do to overturn the 2-goal deficit in the return leg in Munich on 22 April. Of course, a 2-0 win in the return leg at the Allianz Arena is not beyond the German champions, but the pressure will be enormous.
Bayern were missing several key players in the first leg match through injury, including Franck Ribéry, Arjen Robben, David Alaba, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Javi Martínez and Medhi Benatia. Even on the pitch, Xabi Alonso, Mario Gotze and Rafinha wore a fatigued look, while Philipp Lahm and Holger Badstuber are yet to find firm footings after returning from injury spells.
Coach Pep Guardiola had reacted after the loss to Porto, “We have players who were out a long time with injuries. Their legs don't last very long.” – an indication of what transpired behind closed doors that led to the doctor’s resignation.
Guardiola has had previous run-ins with the respected club doctor before, most notably over the fitness of midfielder Thiago Alcantara ahead of last summer's World Cup.Published 17 Apr 2015, 05:07 IST