Franz Beckenbauer believes Bayern Munich have shown they can compete with the best clubs in the world by securing Pep Guardiola as their next coach.
The Bavarian giants announced on Wednesday that Guardiola has agreed to take charge of the club when Jupp Heynckes steps down over the summer, ending months of speculation during which the former Barcelona boss has been linked with a host of top sides.
Beckenbauer feels die Roten have pulled off a major coup by beating the likes of Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea to the Spaniard's signature, telling Sky Sports News: "You have to say: 'hats off'.
"I have to congratulate FC Bayern. I'm sure Guardiola got showered with offers. It has become one of the best and most successful clubs of recent years and to get a coach like that, you can only congratulate them.
"It shows the standing that Bayern has with the biggest clubs - Real Madrid, FC Barcelona and Manchester United - and that they can compete with them.
"On the one hand I am a little surprised, on the other hand I'm not. When you look at Jupp Heynckes' quotes during the last few weeks, you could see a little hesitation. And as it currently runs with Bayern, you usually do not hesitate. Signs became more clear that he would leave in the summer. If [Heynckes] brings the season to an end with one or two titles, he has managed an excellent farewell."
Beckenbauer also said he believes that Guardiola will add a little more stability to the club, and can form the perfect partnership with sporting director Matthias Sammer at Allianz Arena.
"It is difficult to have an improvement," he said. "The way the first half of the season went, that was already very good.
"A little more stability has to be brought in there, this is what was missing a little bit during recent years. Matthias Sammer and Guardiola, I do not know where there is a better pair."