Bayern Munich yesterday turned 118, and have started the latest year of their existence in fitting fashion, as two of their biggest stars had an exceptionally petty row at their training ground. Mats Hummels and Robert Lewandowski - who played together with Borussia Dortmund before Hummels joined the Polish striker at the Allianz Arena - became involved in a heated exchange at training earlier today.
German newspaper Bild send a reporter to cover training at Bayern, and the outlet are reporting this evening that Hummels and Lewandowski spat insults at each other as the defender objected to Lewandowski's decision to stoop and tie his laces when faced with defensive responsibilities during a training drill.
Both were on the same side.
The Bild reporter overheard what was said, and it all seems very...petty.
MH - Lewy, are you serious? You're seriously tying your shoelaces? Fucking bullshit!
RL: You just lost the ball now!
MH: That was a mistake. With you, though, it’s your attitude.
RL: You constantly lose the ball. You just talk.
MH: Oh shut up! Get lost!
Neither shook hands at the end of training, and kept their distance from each other as they trooped to the dressing room after training.
These arguments probably happen at training grounds regularly, but it is symbolic of the intense focus on Bayern that this has wormed its way into the public eye. The idea that dysfunction in the Bayern squad could possibly corrupt their potential on the field is a tempting narrative for the rest of German football to clutch onto, as nobody else seems capable of beating them: they are nineteen points clear of second-placed Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga.