MUNICH, GERMANY - MAY 19: Bastian Schweinsteiger of FC Bayern Muenchen gestures while his team mates Arjen Robben (R) and Franck Ribery (3rd R) argue with the referee Pedro Proenca during UEFA Champions League Final between FC Bayern Muenchen and Chelsea at the Fussball Arena München on May 19, 2012 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Bayern Munich failed to win a trophy for the second straight season last year. There's no way that will happen again, right?
Team: FC Bayern Munich
Manager: Jupp Heynckes
Key Additions: Dante, Xherdan Shaqiri, Claudio Pizarro, Mario Mandzukic, Tom Starke
Key Losses: Ivica Olic, Danijel Pranjic, Hans-Jörg Butt
2011-2012 Finish: Bundesliga 2nd
2012-2013 Prediction: Bayern were the ultimate runners up last year finishing second in the Bundesliga, DFB Pokal, and Champions League. The loss to Chelsea cemented a second straight season without a trophy for Bayern. The Board went into action immediately which saw sporting director Christian Nerlinger leave his post, and Matthias Sammer replace him. The message was clear: The status quo wasn't acceptable.
Rumors circulated that Bayern had offered Pep Guardiola all the moneys in the world to take over the head coaching job at the end of this season. While those rumors are unsubstantiated at this time, Jupp Heynckes was always going to go into this season as the head coach. The length of his leash will be interesting. Sammer is a competent enough manager having won the Bundesliga and UEFA Cup with Borussia Dortmund in the 2001-2002 season. Sammer can step in and fill the role of caretaker manager if necessary.
Bayern was quick to act in the transfer market. After failing to gain the signature of Borussia Mönchengladbach's Marco Reus, they moved quickly to the signature of FC Basel's Xherdan Shaqiri. The young Swiss midfielder was coming off of a blistering performance in the group stages of the Champions League, where he put on fantastic displays against Manchester United. Bayern were able to get a Gladbach player in Dante to add some depth to the centerback position. Claudio Pizarro and Mario Mandzukic were brought in to challenge Mario Gomez for the starting role at center forward. Tom Starke will replace Jörg Butt as Manuel Neuer's backup. They're trying to sign Javi Martinez from Athletic Bilbao at this time. The transfer is not complete at this time but could be done at any time.
The player to keep an eye for Bayern will be Bastian Schweinsteiger. He missed some significant time after breaking his collarbone last December, and he again missed time after injuring his ankle late in the year. Schweinsteiger rushed himself back from this injury, and he wasn't the same player in the Champions League Final or the European Championship for Germany. Bayern will come into the season with their eyes set on winning the treble, but they can't accomplish it without a fully functioning Schweinsteiger. When he's healthy, he's one of the best midfielders in the world, but he hasn't been healthy in a while. Schweinsteiger has already missed time in the preseason due to injuries, and he needs to get healthy for Bayern to overcome Borussia Dortmund.
I really like the moves that Bayern made this summer to add some much needed depth to their squad. They'll have their work cut out for them to overcome BVB in the league. They have the depth to compete on all three fronts this season and be successful. I think Bayern finds some glory this season, I'm just not sure which trophy will be theirs.