Rummenigge Ruins Pranjic Transfer

It’s been known for some time now that Danijel Pranjic isn’t happy in Munich anymore, he even announced that he’ll leave the club at the end of the season. Now it turns out that this could’ve happened 6 months earlier if it wasn’t for Karl-Heinz Rummenigge who essentially ruined the transfer by asking for too much. Let me explain why this is a stupid move.

285 – the number of minutes Danijel Pranjic has played for Bayern this season. If you exclude the 90 minutes he played for the reserve team and the 90 minutes of the absolutely meaningless Champions League match in Manchester, we’re talking about a mere 105 minutes, 93 of those collected in cup matches against inferior opponents.

Now you know how important Pranjic is this season. Granted, it wasn’t always like that. To compare, he played 2943 minutes (10-11) and 1820 minutes (09-10) in the other two seasons since joining Bayern in 2009. Very respectable numbers, Pranjic was a regular without anyone really noticing.

These numbers also make it obvious why he isn’t happy anymore. The Croatian, while never truly brilliant, always was absolutely solid, you could always rely on Pranjic to take care of business. Now he’s not needed anymore. Not wanted anymore. Almost ignored. Of course you can hardly blame Jupp Heynckes for that. Why let him play when you have the same only 11 years younger with David Alaba? So the announcement that the player and the club would part ways at the end of the season, when his contract expires, was no surprise, not to say inevitable. Heynckes’ decision that nobody can leave the club during the winter break also made sense, let’s not forget that Bayern’s squad is one of the smallest around.

But Heynckes’ mind has changed, apparently. It is reported that Danijel Pranjic came to an agreement with Everton. Exactly the kind of club he should play for, perfect for his abilities. The coach allegedly agreed and thought letting Pranjic go wouldn’t be a massive loss and also the right thing to do since the player always gave it everything and played wherever the coaches wanted him to play (left-back, central midfield, left midfield, offensive midfield, occasionally even right midfield) without complaining.

So why did the deal not happen? Because Karl-Heinz Rummenigge asked for €2m, that’s why. Quite an amount for a club like Everton (yes, there are Premier League clubs that aren’t wealthy). And this is exactly what I disagree with. Had Rummenigge said that nobody leaves the club, I might’ve understood it, although it’s already debatable if he should have any say and overrule the coach’s opinion that the squad would be good enough even without Pranjic. That however is not what he said. This wasn’t a fundamental decision, it wasn’t about whether the squad is big enough or not. This was just about money.

Almost exactly a year ago, Mark van Bommel left Bayern to join Milan. The new club didn’t have to pay a cent. Half a year earlier, Luca Toni joined Genoa. Again, Bayern didn’t ask for any fee. These are the moments that make Bayern different, that underline the mentality of being a family instead of a football club. The players worked hard for years, now they’re not needed anymore, so let them go for free instead of risking that a potential deal fails because of the fee being too high. Basically, a little “thank you for your services”. One million more or less don’t matter that much in Munich, not to mention that you save money by not having to pay the player’s salary anymore. A perfect win-win situation.

Why did it not happen this time? I have no explanation. Pranjic will leave the club in July, everybody knows this. It would be a surprise if he makes it past 500 minutes this season. This was a perfect opportunity to get rid of an unneeded employee who gets paid a respectable amount of money every year while being anything but ungrateful. Danijel Pranjic paid almost €1m of the transfer fee back then because Heerenveen asked for more than Bayern was ready to give and, now that his career in Munich is over, Rummenigge thinks it’s a good idea to ask for €2m? (Which, by the way, unless my information is inaccurate, isn’t less than what the club will now have to pay him as salary)

You could’ve saved money. You could’ve proved that you’re more than just another club, that your employees matter. You could’ve made a man happy by increasing his chances to play at what might be one of his last major international tournaments. Instead, you decide that you want another 2m. You go crazy over what is basically just peanuts for this club. You let the greed rule. Simply put: you did not act Bayern-like.

 

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8 Responses to Rummenigge Ruins Pranjic Transfer

  1. Anonymous says:

    A really good piece and I hope this never happens again as you said it’s not like Bayern to do that.
    Well it was really just Rummenigge !
    Thanks for this. 🙂

  2. I’m still angry about all this, even hours later.

    Also, I’ve been wondering… if KHR came to his senses after all, would it be possible to just terminate the contract so he’s free to go and sign for Everton? Blackburn did this earlier today and I was hoping that not all is lost.

  3. Much as I love Kalle he has started to screw his business head on a lot more tightly. This is a good thing in many respects, but here he makes him look like a bit of a fool – and a greedy one at that.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Pranjic is a victim of circumstance here. Bayern is not greedy IMO. It’s a football decision to not let him go. He may even be used again as a LB ( highly unlikely) given the injuries and suspension on defense. Nevertheless, this is more of an indication of Bayern’s catastrophic transfer policy and squad management.

    Breno is iffy at best. Contento is hurt, DvB is hurt, Boateng has had injury issues in the past (none so far at Bayern). If you take a close look at the roster, we have 9-10 guys that get penciled in every time by Heynckes because they are much better than their replacement. After that nobody on the bench or the rest of the squad scares anyone. That is why Pranjic is not let go.

    Bayern could have saved money? Hardly. They would need to buy a replacement, definitely pay a fee during the winter break, and pay the player a salary probably equivalent or higher than Pranjic’s. Also, Pranjic signed the contract himself. He wanted to come to Bayern. One should not forget that he is a LvG guy. He was brought in by him and if it were not for LvG Bayern may have never signed him in the first place.

    Lastly, MvB was let go because Bayern already had the player to replace him – Gustavo. Toni was let go because Bayern had a surplus of forwards for one position up front. In addition, Bayern saved 10M in salary for someone who would never have played. Pranjic’s case does not compare in the slightest to those two.

    • Red Robbery says:

      I disagree with the last part. While you’re right about van Bommel and Toni (especially Toni’s salary was massive, this was almost the only chance to get rid of him), I think that Pranjic’s situation can be compared. At left-back, there are Lahm, Contento, Alaba, Gustavo and even Boateng and Badstuber who can play the position. The central midfield has Schweinsteiger, Kroos, Tymoshchuk, Gustavo and Alaba. Left midfield: Ribery, Alaba, Müller, Olic, Kroos (Usami).
      Is the squad not big enough? Certainly. But as small as it is, Pranjic is dispensable. Heynckes has found the elite of maybe 15 guys who play, the rest hardly matters and Pranjic matters even less than most of those. To keep him because “we might need him if 6 similar players are injured” is weird.

  5. Cris says:

    Pranjic is a victim of circumstance here. Bayern is not greedy IMO. It’s a football decision to not let him go. He may even be used again as a LB ( highly unlikely) given the injuries and suspension on defense. Nevertheless, this is more of an indication of Bayern’s catastrophic transfer policy and squad management.

    Breno is iffy at best. Contento is hurt, DvB is hurt, Boateng has had injury issues in the past (none so far at Bayern). If you take a close look at the roster, we have 9-10 guys that get penciled in every time by Heynckes because they are much better than their replacement. After that nobody on the bench or the rest of the squad scares anyone. That is why Pranjic is not let go.

    Bayern could have saved money? Hardly. They would need to buy a replacement, definitely pay a fee during the winter break, and pay the player a salary probably equivalent or higher than Pranjic’s. Also, Pranjic signed the contract himself. He wanted to come to Bayern. One should not forget that he is a LvG guy. He was brought in by him and if it were not for LvG Bayern may have never signed him in the first place.

    Lastly, MvB was let go because Bayern already had the player to replace him – Gustavo. Toni was let go because Bayern had a surplus of forwards for one position up front. In addition, Bayern saved 10M in salary for someone who would never have played. Pranjic’s case does not compare in the slightest to those two.

  6. KarryFCB says:

    Great piece. More opinion pieces would be kickass. Thanks.

  7. Pingback: Croatian Sports

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