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Mats Hummels denies being the Bayern Munich ‘king slayer’

The fallout from the sacking of Carlo Ancelotti continues at Bayern Munich, with Mats Hummels denying he plotted to oust the Italian coach. Hummels was widely reported to be one of five players who wanted Ancelotti out.

Bundesliga 7. Spieltag - Hertha Berlin vs Bayern München - Niederlage des FC - Hummels (picture-alliance/dpa/M. Kappeler)

In the days after Ancelotti was dismissed, Bayern president Uli Hoeness said the coach’s position had become untenable after five players turned against him. In subsequent days, Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery, Thomas Müller, Robert Lewandowski,  Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Kingsley Coman have been named by various sources as those thought to be in the frame.

Robben was reported in Kicker as saying that "there's better training at my son's youth team" than under Carlo Ancelotti, while in the Monday edition of the same publication, a raft of accusations were leveled at the Italian. These included suggestions that Xabi Alonso and Philipp Lahm were unhappy with his methods last season, Joshua Kimmich and Kingsley Coman felt they couldn’t progress under him and various players felt that their fitness training was insufficient.

Earlier in the season, Müller was also vocal in his criticism of the former Real Madrid boss: "I don't know exactly which qualities [Ancelotti] wants to see, but mine seem not to be 100 percent in demand," he said. Lewandowski has openly criticized the club's transfer policy.

With the exception of Lewandowski, who has no direct replacement in the squad, and Müller, all those suspected of agitating against Ancelotti were dropped for his last game in charge – the humbling 3-0 defeat against Paris Saint-Germain.

Bundesliga 7. Spieltag - Hertha Berlin vs Bayern München - Niederlage des FC - Robben (picture-alliance/nordphoto/Engler)

Arjen Robben has been critical of Ancelotti's methods

But after opening the scoring in the 2-2 draw with Hertha Berlin on Sunday, Hummels insisted he did not play a significant role in the downfall of his former boss.

“It was talked about by five people but I didn’t talk about being unhappy because I wasn’t playing or anything like that,” the center back said.

“I don’t think it’s ok to call me a king slayer. I don’t know where this information comes from or if it was [only] written because I didn’t play."

As well as the rifts that have come to light between the players and Ancelotti, there have been similar rumblings about disagreements at board level, with Hoeness and CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge reported to disagree over the club’s transfer policy.

The Bavarian club are known as FC Hollywood for a reason and off-pitch drama is nothing new but with a five point deficit in the Bundesliga, a struggle to replace their attacking stars and underperformance in the Champions League, whoever replaces Ancelotti will have to be as adept at ego management as he is at tactics.

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