Bundesliga falling behind Premier League, warns Rummenigge

The Bayern Munich chief has lamented how the English league is ahead in terms of transfer activity, television money and successful marketing

Bayern Munich CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has urged the Bundesliga to step up if they are to avoid falling further behind the Premier League financially.

The English top flight sold the domestic television rights to matches for a record £5.136 billion in February for three seasons from 2016-17 - a 71 per cent increase on the previous deal in 2012.

Contrastingly, the Bundesliga receives an estimated £437 million per season for rights to air games within Germany, leaving the Premier League around four times better off.

Rummenigge lamented how Germany is being beaten by English opposition and is worried that the Bavarians and their domestic rivals will be stripped bare by Chelsea, Manchester United and their Premier League competitors.

"The Bundesliga has to finally act," he told Bild. "The English are overtaking us left, right and centre.

"When taking into account transfer market activity, in marketing terms, in TV money – anywhere, really. The Bundesliga has to be careful not to fall further behind, I think.

"Anyone who follows the transfer market at the moment, within which English clubs work, knows their clubs are being fully upgraded. The Bundesliga has to be careful that we're not emptied out."

Rummenigge was speaking at the start of Bayern's trip to China – which sees Pep Guardiola's men play three money-spinning matches in nine days – and he says such pre-season tours are a necessity in the modern footballing climate.

"We have to make these trips for economic reasons," he added. "These are not leisure trips, let's be realistic here.

"It would be possible to go to Austria or Switzerland to prepare, which would be easier on players and coaches, but if eight or nine German clubs do this then the Bundesliga wouldn't be able to continue.

"There's no fears that a trip to China affects our preparation, though. Last year was very different because we only had three and a half weeks of time to work with the players [because of the World Cup].

"This time, many internationals such as Thomas Muller and Manuel Neuer are already back in training, along with many others also. This year is much more relaxed."

Bayern kick-off their competitive season with a DFL-Supercup clash against Wolfsburg on August 1, with the Bundesliga getting under way 13 days later.