In recent months, FC Bayern Munich has received one rejection after another on the coaching market. Xabi Alonso, Julian Nagelsmann, Ralf Rangnick, and most recently Thomas Tuchel, who has long since been on leave – they all publicly turned down the once so respected coaching position at the German record champions. The season at Säbener Straße was therefore not just a sporting debacle.

Now, it seems that Vincent Kompany is set to take over. The Belgian is a surprise addition to the long list of coaching candidates, given that the young coach’s sporting record is mixed. After two years on the sidelines at his youth club RSC Anderlecht, Kompany moved to English second division club Burnley in 2022. There he managed to get promoted straight to the Premier League, but last season the “Clarets” were relegated straight back as second-to-last.

Despite the messed up season, people on the island speak highly of Kompany. He managed to turn a staid team into a functioning team that embodies attractive offensive football. One of his biggest advocates is Kompany’s former coach Pep Guardiola. “One day he will sit here and represent Manchester City,” said the Spaniard after a game against Burnley. It was Kompany’s “destination to become a coach here.” 

And indeed, it was at Manchester City that Kompany experienced his greatest moments as an active player. For eleven years he was a solid pillar in the Citizens’ central defense, won four English championship titles and led Guardiola’s star ensemble onto the field as captain. City’s former president Francis Lee described Kompany as “the best centre-back to ever play for the club”. After his retirement, the club even erected a statue of their icon in front of the Etihad Stadium.

Kompany once said that he learned the coaching trade during his years under Guardiola. The style of play he demands of his teams reflects this. Kompany relies on short passes, lots of possession, positional changes and an extremely offensive approach. All virtues that FC Bayern would like to stand for again, but which the club has rarely brought to the pitch in the past two years.

Kompany is considered to be extremely communicative when dealing with players. He speaks fluent French, English and German, which is known to be an important requirement for employment at Säbener Straße. The Bundesliga is not foreign territory for him either. Before his time in Manchester, he laced up his football boots for HSV. Between 2006 and 2008, the defender scored one goal and one assist in 29 Bundesliga games, and Kompany was also extremely popular with the Rothosen. Someone who takes people with him, a figure of identification.

Former Bayern striker Joshua Zirkzee, who was loaned to Anderlecht in the 2021/22 season, has high praise for his former coach. Kompany would “transfer his belief to the players” and ensure the team was hot every day. 

The novice sometimes uses clear words for this. In the VOOsport documentary series “Mauve”, which takes a look behind the scenes at RSC Anderlecht, he snaps at his team in front of the camera in one scene. The team has wasted its time, the coach shouts angrily in the scene. “It would have been better to send the U21s.” The clip went viral on social media after the documentary was released.

According to media reports, negotiations between sports director Max Eberl and Burnley owner Alan Pace are well advanced. Talks about a transfer fee have already been concluded. The personnel has not yet been decided, but in Munich they hope to finish the search for a coach by the end of the week.

Remaining doubts as to whether Kompany can lift the great FC Bayern back to the top of German football after a relegation season with Burnley are justified. In Munich, however, Kompany would be given the player caliber and confidence he needs for his courageous style of play. What at first glance seems like a last ditch effort could turn out to be a smart move after a long search.

Sources: Kicker, Sport 1,