Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic scathingly branded Serge Gnabry an “amateur” for using the day off to attend Paris Fashion Week before delivering a disappointing performance on Tuesday.
The Bundesliga champions drew 1-1 at home to Cologne, with Joshua Kimmich screaming in the 90th minute to save the point.
Gnabry started the match after being in the media spotlight, with Bayern manager Julian Nagelsmann saying his players could use their free time as they saw fit, even as he hinted at some degree of disappointment that the winger would go to Paris on Sunday.
But the German international was recalled at half-time after a disappointing first-half performance.
After the game, Salihamidzic was not shy about expressing his thoughts on the matter.
“This is amateurism,” Kicker quotes Salihamidzic. “That’s exactly what I don’t like. This is exactly what Bayern Munich is not.
“I need a day off to rest, to hit the gas again in the next game. We’ll talk about it.”
However, Nagelsmann was keen to clarify that Gnabry’s extracurricular activities had nothing to do with his departure.
“Now I’m not the type to deal with these tabloid issues. I evaluate what I see on the field and I evaluate what I have on the bench for outstanding players,” he told reporters.
“I had a feeling that we needed a breath of fresh air, also due to the change in the basic structure in Cologne, because it opened up a little more distance for the flankers.
“That’s why we switched places. It had nothing to do with everything else. I evaluate what I see and then try to make the right decision.”
The result means Bayern’s lead at the top of the table is four points to six on Tuesday before second-placed RB Leipzig thrashed Schalke 6-1.
Saved the best for last pic.twitter.com/TKxM1TpDaX
— FC Bayern Munich (@FCBayernEN) January 24, 2023
Bayern resumed the season last week with a 1-1 draw against Leipzig, leaving them with two out of six possible points in 2023.
And Captain Kimmich found it necessary to question the attitude of his teammates after this latest setback.
“The second half was a little better,” he told Sat1. “First half…we certainly have to talk about it in terms of approach, our readiness, our attitude.
“It’s relatively easy to change – it’s not about tactics, technique or physical form, but simply desire. I expect we can change that relatively quickly.”
Bayern will play on Saturday when they host Eintracht in Frankfurt.