Coach Louis van Gaal will extend his contract at FC Bayern München by a year until summer 2012 after leading the club to a German double – and the UEFA Champions League final – in his first term in Bavaria.
Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, chairman of the Bayern board, said: "We have agreed a contract extension. Nothing is signed yet, but that is only a formality." The decision follows Bayern's 2-1 home loss to 1. FSV Mainz 05 on Saturday, a result that leaves them ninth in the Bundesliga table.
Commenting on the timing of the announcement, Rummenigge added: "I prefer to do things that are not expected. Anyone can get a contract extension after a win. That is why it is a good sign that even after the defeat by Mainz we still know how high the coach's standing is. He is doing a great job, day in, day out, and we have recognised that by extending his contract."
The Dutchman, 59, signed a two-year deal when he replaced Jupp Heynckes as Bayern boss in summer 2009, fresh from lifting the Eredivisie crown with AZ Alkmaar. Speaking ahead of Bayern's UEFA Champions League visit to FC Basel 1893 on Tuesday, Van Gaal said: "I'm glad I will stay in Munich for another year. We have begun something here I wish to continue. I could not wish for better chemistry with my players. My relationship with the board is also good.
"You learn a lot during difficult times," Van Gaal added. "We are going through a difficult moment and the board has shown great confidence in us." Bayern vice-captain Philipp Lahm was pleased to see the former AFC Ajax and FC Barcelona coach renew his commitment to Bayern and said: "We have seen how meticulous the coach is and the progress we have made."
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