Jupp Heynckes tightens the screw on Bayern Munich

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BERLIN. February 19. KAZINFORM Jupp Heynckes was not happy. The Bayern Munich manager had seen something he found unacceptable. Weisse Socken. White socks. Unbelievable. Had he not told the entire squad to wear black socks for this particular training session in Qatar?

And yet there were Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos in white socks. "We have a joint goal we are working towards," he barked at the players. "We need discipline. And that starts with having the same socks."

The manager even wanted to fine the two players. The club captain, Philipp Lahm, was told to collect the money but in the end they arrived at a truce. Heynckes, however, had made his point. Schweinsteiger and Kroos, needless to say, wore black socks for the afternoon session. "Did our manager overreact? No, I think he did the right thing," said the Bayern chief executive, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

The incident happened in January, by which time the manager already knew he was leaving at the end of the season. The Bundesliga club, who face Arsenal in the Champions League last 16 first leg on Tuesday, were pursuing Pep Guardiola but the 67-year-old German was not going to go quietly. Inside him raged an incredible determination to make up for that gruesome night last May when his team had dominated Chelsea in the Champions League final but still, somehow, managed to lose on penalties. At their own home. After missing a penalty in extra time. Schweinsteiger, for one, was in tears after missing his spot-kick, Kazinform has learnt from the Guardian.

Up in the stands in the Allianz Arena on that May evening sat Uli Hoeness, completely expressionless. The Bayern president cannot stand defeats. He talked after the game about "this not being the time to criticise anyone", but he was already thinking about the ruthless decisions needed to make Bayern winners again. "We used to laugh about Leverkusen always finishing second. Now that is us," he said pointedly.

Hoeness's first victim was the sporting director, Christian Nerlinger. The former midfielder had annoyed the president in March 2012 when he had conceded the title to Dortmund after a defeat against Leverkusen that left Bayern seven points behind the leaders. "When a sporting director says that the title is lost when nothing has been decided then I am of the opinion that someone in the club must say: 'No, no, that is actually not the case'," Hoeness told die Abendzeitung in October. "It gives the wrong signal to the team, when the club lies on its back and puts its four legs up in the air.

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