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Julian Nagelsmann reacts to criticism over Bayern’s Covid outbreak

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Bayern have suffered a Covid outbreak ahead of their upcoming match against Monchengladbach.

Bayern Munich announced nine of their first-team players have tested positive for COVID-19. The club also have other players on the sidelines due to fitness problems.

Bayern have the worst Covid tally among the Bundesliga sides. The Bavarians have received criticism from German media for their poor handling of the Covid situation. However, Julian Nagelsmann says he does not regret giving his players the freedom to go abroad.

He said (via SportsMax): “I have a clear opinion about this topic. I’m not a teacher, I’m a coach,

“Our players are all adults. My players are responsible for their own lives. We have the same rules and recommendations that we’ve had the last two years.

“You want to remain healthy. There’s no option to suggest to a player that he can’t go on holiday, if the law doesn’t prevent that. There’s psychological recovery. If you look at Upamecano, he flew to Senegal to see his family. If I don’t let him do that then I can’t let another player go 10 miles down the road to see his family.

“Every employee was allowed to go on holiday. You can’t tell a player not to go, to stay home. With Omar Richards, once we found out that England was a high-risk area we got him back from England. 

“I don’t know why we have more infected players than others. It’s unfortunate, but the players have the same rules that have worked very well. There are other clubs that don’t do PCR tests, they do fast tests that aren’t as sensitive. So there’s a couple of elements, we have to make the best of the situation.

“I was very happy with the players, the U23s and U19s players that joined us. I am not the type of coach to complain. We can discuss if these rules make sense. I went out for a meal and was infected. I rarely go out, but I went out once and got coronavirus. It happens, I don’t know exactly why.”

Will the game get postponed?

Asked about the possibility of DFB postponing the game, Nagelsmann responded: I can’t answer that with 100 per cent accuracy. My job, and the job of the players, is to prepare as if it is going to take place.

“That’s what we’re operating on, that’s what we’re expecting. We’ve prepared all week for this game to take place. 

“It’s a challenging situation, but as a coach it’s an interesting challenge, you have to adapt, change your tactics to turn your problem into a strength.”

Bayern’s Covid cases are: Manuel Neuer, Lucas Hernandez, Dayot Upamecano, Tanguy Nianzou, Omar Richards, Corentin Tolisso, Kingsley Coman, Leroy Sane and Alphonso Davies.

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and Bouna Sarr have travelled to Cameroon for the Africa Cup of Nations. Niklas Sule is doubtful with a back injury, while Leon Goretzka and Josip Stanisic are out of action with injuries.