Uli Hoeness Slams PSG's Antero Henrique After Failed Jerome Boateng Transfer

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistSeptember 3, 2018

MUNICH, GERMANY - MAY 12: President Uli Hoeness of Muenchen looks on prior to the Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Muenchen and VfB Stuttgart at Allianz Arena on May 12, 2018 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
TF-Images/Getty Images

Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has called on Paris Saint-Germain to replace their sporting director Antero Henrique after the French club's failed transfer pursuit of Jerome Boateng. 

The Bayern defender was linked with a move away from the Allianz Arena throughout the summer, with PSG consistently mentioned as potential suitors for the Germany international.

Hoeness has confirmed talks were held between the clubs about a possible transfer but was critical of the way PSG conducted the negotiations, per Kicker (h/t Sacha Pisani of Goal).

"I would advise PSG to replace their sporting director," he said. "The man is not a great figurehead for the club. PSG cannot afford to have such a sporting director if they want to be one the best clubs in the world. ... We asked for this fee [€50 million] because we do not want to hand over Jerome and assumed that Paris would not pay that amount."

Bayern Munich's German defender Jerome Boateng takes part in a discussion at the Bread and Butter B&B fashion fair on September 2, 2018 in Berlin. - Along with the Bread & Butter fair and the cultural platform 032c, Boateng presented a capsule collection

It was added by Hoeness that new Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac was keen to keep Boateng as part of his squad for the upcoming campaign.

As relayed by Ronan Murphy of Goal, Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic was also critical of the way PSG went about their business in pursuit of Boateng:

Ronan Murphy @swearimnotpaul

Hasan Salihamidzic on PSG's negotiations for Jerome Boateng to Sport1: "The tactics from the other side were funny. I don't want to offend anyone, I'm just saying that you can not do that kind of thing with Bayern Munich, especially when it comes to such a player," #FCBayern #PSG

In the end, Boateng stayed with the Bavarian giants, where he will battle for a place in the starting XI with the likes of Mats Hummels and Niklas Sule. 

The 30-year-old heads into this campaign following a challenging FIFA World Cup. As Germany suffered a shock exit at the group stage of the competition, Boateng struggled in matches against Mexico—when he was run ragged by speedy attackers—and Sweden.

However, it's clear Bayern still believe he has a roll to play at the club, as evidenced by the massive valuation placed upon him. Even so, with Sule establishing himself as an elite performer, he now faces a major fight for a starting spot at the Allianz Arena, as these numbers from Squawka show:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Niklas Süle vs. Mats Hummels vs. Jérôme Boateng per 90 in the league last season: Clearances: 2.6—2.3—2.7 Tackles: 1.6—2.5—1.4 Interceptions: 1.5—2.2—1.1 Pass acc.: 93%—87%—87% Each with their own strengths. 💪 https://t.co/oNXSaJyQ8s

Although Hoeness may have been critical of Henrique, last summer the PSG director did broker two of the biggest deals in the history of the game, as Neymar's world-record transfer was followed by the signing of Kylian Mbappe from domestic rivals Monaco.

This summer PSG eventually strengthened their defence with the acquisition of Thilo Kehrer from Schalke, who appears to be an excellent young prospect:

WhoScored.com @WhoScored

Thilo Kehrer: Only Santiago Ascacibar (91) made more tackles than @KehrerThilo (81) of players aged 21 and under in the Bundesliga last season For more player stats -- https://t.co/roMCpBTip3 https://t.co/cib7YY2gr8

In recent years PSG have made some shock signings in the transfer market, and as the man in charge of that process, Henrique deserves credit. However, there was some speculation about his future late last season, with L'Equipe (h/t Sport Witness) reporting that former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was being considered for the roll.

This year there'll be pressure on PSG to challenge for the UEFA Champions League, having fallen at the first knockout stage last term. If Mbappe and Neymnar can fire them to that prize, the work of Henrique will be vindicated.