Leverkusen cool Heynckes talk
Former Bayern coach linked with return
By Thomas Zocher. Last Updated: 08/03/11 11:45am
Heynckes: Linked with Bayern post
Bayer Leverkusen have played down speculation manager Jupp Heynckes could leave for former club Bayern Munich in the summer.
Defending champions Bayern are reportedly already hunting for a coach to succeed current boss Louis van Gaal after confirming the Dutchman will depart the Bundesliga club at the end of the season.
That announcement followed a poor run of Bayern results, with the German giants failing to emulate the success of last season when they lifted their 22nd league trophy.
Heynckes, who is out of contract at Leverkusen in the summer, is one of a host of names being linked with the soon-to-be vacant post, having coached at the club twice before, most recently as caretaker boss in the 2008-09 season.
But Leverkusen spokesman Meinolf Sprink insists Bayern have not contacted the club about the role.
"Jupp Heynckes is under contract at our club," he told German newspaper tz.
"We have not been in touch with anyone regarding this, though we were pretty much unaware of these rumours."
Heynckes, a former German international, initially coached Bayern between 1987 and 1991, guiding the club to two back-to-back league titles during his time in Munich.
He returned as caretaker manager for a month in 2009 following the sacking of Jurgen Klinsmann before departing for Leverkusen.
The 65-year-old, who also won the UEFA Champions League managing Real Madrid in 1998, is one of several coaches reportedly in the frame to take over at Bayern.
Other names being linked with the post include former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez and ex-Tottenham and Ajax manager Martin Jol.