The FC Bayern München and Germany No.1 is on the verge of his 311th Bundesliga win, which would give Neuer sole ownership of the league record, which he currently shares with his predecessor and current CEO Oliver Kahn. In this week’s interview, Neuer talks about the record, about Julian Nagelsmann and his future ambitions.
You are on the verge of your 311th Bundesliga win, which would be a new record, taking the honour you currently hold jointly with your CEO Oliver Kahn. Have you spoken with him about that?
No, but he’s very relaxed about it all. And I think he’s happy with me because he’s in charge here at the club, and as long as I’m breaking records, it means things are going well for the team. And obviously he benefits from that as well!”
You swapped your shirt for Köln coach Steffen Baumgart’s flat cap after the game there. Do you wear it?
No, I don’t wear it. It’s more of a memento. I think it was just a cool thing. He asked me for my shirt, and his cap is already pretty legendary. I think it’s cool he wears it.
Are you ever astonished by everything you’ve achieved?
I think that only comes after your career. I’m still in the here and now. And I’m not even thinking about retiring yet. Of course, that’s down to my body, whether I’m healthy and remain fit to play. But I think that analysis will only come after your career and maybe a realisation of what you’ve achieved because, like I’ve said before, I’m a competitive person. I am still hungry and want to achieve everything with the team and players. That’s why you don’t think you’ve achieved everything. It’s always a new endeavour for me. I’ve always got new ambitions. And like I said, it always starts from scratch.
Does that mean the next goal is a 10th Bundesliga title in a row?
That’s how it looks.
Uli Hoeneß recently said that you will extend your contract, which expires in 2023, and end your career at Bayern. Is he right?
First of all, it’s tough to disagree with Uli Hoeneß. But I feel good here, I know what I’ve got with the club. The club knows what it’s got with me. There’s nothing to argue against it.
Until what age will you play?
Age doesn’t matter to me. Even the number, whether I’m 35 or 36. It’s just about being healthy, how I’m living, being able to perform, am I needed? Those are the crucial questions.
Coach Julian Nagelsmann is a year younger than you. Have you ever thought that he’s still just a young man?
No, when you talk to him or look at him, you know he could still be a player. That’s obvious. But he’s got an aura as a coach, and he can impart his wisdom very well. He’s got a clear plan and a strategy, so both are true. Of course, he’s a bit younger, more dynamic – he is also eager to get stuck in during training, it’s clear that he would like to play with us sometimes. You notice that he’s sort of itching to do it, but that doesn’t stop us all having respect for him.
Have you ever taken a ride on Nagelsmann’s electric skateboard?
No, I’m more of a skier. I don’t get on boards.
You couldn’t play in the Leverkusen game due to injury. Does that annoy you?
Yes, of course. But throughout your career, you need to understand that there are days like this, where you can’t play. This is just part of it and it’s completely normal. I love seeing my guys in the changing room, getting them up for it, giving them high fives and wishing them all the best.