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'A good verdict for Germany's honest taxpayers' - Football world reacts to Hoeness sentence

While some leading figures within the game have expressed sympathy for the former West Germany international, others believe that justice has been done

Thursday's news that Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison for tax evasion has unsurprisingly sent shockwaves across the football world.

The reaction to the news has varied from satisfaction to dismay, with some leading figures within the game feeling that justice has been served, and others expressing their sympathy for the 62-year-old.

Former Wolfsburg defender Hans Sarpei tweeted: "A guilty verdict for Uli Hoeness, a good one for the many millions of honest taxpayers in Germany."

However, ex-Leverkusen coach Christoph Daum was quick to send his commiserations to Hoeness and his loved ones.

"My thoughts are with Uli Hoeness family and friends. I wish them all the strength that they will now need to get through this difficult time together."

Former Germany international defender Christoph Metzelder is also hoping that Hoeness will be allowed to serve his time in peace, tweeting: "Now that Justice has spoken, the malice [towards him] should stop."

German League Association president Dr. Reinhard Rauball also argued that the trial should not diminish what Hoeness achieved with Bayern both as a player and an administrator.

"The merits of Uli Hoeness to German football remain unaffected despite his misconduct."

Meanwhile, Eintracht Frankfurt CEO Heribert Bruchhagen is also of the opinion that Bayern's bid for a second successive treble will be derailed by the possible resignation of their club president, stating: "I do not think it will now have a negative effect on the football."

Ex-England striker Gary Lineker shares that view, whimsically tweeting: "Bayern President Uli Hoeness given 3.5 years in jail for tax evasion. There's an outside chance they could lose a game before his release."