'Tough pill to swallow' - Matthijs de Ligt reacts to Bayern sacking Julian Nagelsmann - and responds to dressing room rift reports

Matthijs de Ligt Bayern Munich 2022-23Getty
  • Nagelsmann fired by Bayern
  • Has been replaced by Thomas Tuchel
  • Decision came a shock to De Ligt

WHAT HAPPENED? Dutch defender De Ligt has opened up on recent events at Bayern, admitting he was not expecting to see Nagelsmann lose his job. The coach was dismissed following a 2-1 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen that saw Bayern knocked off the top of the table, with Thomas Tuchel drafted in as his replacement, and De Ligt says it's been a difficult decision to take.

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WHAT THEY SAID: "No, I didn't see it coming and I was surprised. We're second in the league, in the quarter-finals of the cup and in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Everything's still in there," the Netherlands international told NOS. "Those in charge decide who the coach is, but it was a tough pill to swallow. But I also believe that Tuchel is a coach who suits us."

AND WHAT'S MORE: De Ligt also played down talk of a dressing room rift and says he enjoyed a good relationship with Nagelsmann at Bayern.

"Ah, the German media – that says enough. I had a good relationship with the coach and his staff, so it was difficult for me," he added. "I got in touch with him, sent him a message and thanked him for everything he taught me. He really wanted me at the club and was important to me. Thanks to him, I've taken important steps in my development over the past few months."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Bayern opted to fire Nagelsmann as they were concerned about missing out on Tuchel once again. The German has since been confirmed as Bayern's new boss and had admitted he's hoping to exploit Bayern's current position and bring home three trophies this season.


De Ligt NagelsmannGettyMatthijs de Ligt 2022-23GettyThomas Tuchel FC BayernGetty

DID YOU KNOW? Tuchel is the eighth manager to coach both Borussia Dortmund and Bayern in the Bundesliga (after Ottmar Hitzfeld, Pal Csernai, Otto Rehhagel, Branko Zebec, Reinhard Saftig, Erich Ribbeck and Udo Lattek).

WHAT NEXT FOR BAYERN? The Bavarian giants begin life under Tuchel with a top-of-the-table clash against Dortmund in the Bundesliga on Saturday, April 1.