Hoeness confident of title prospects

Hoeness confident of title prospects

Published Feb. 23, 2010 1:00 p.m. ET

Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness expects his team to win the Bundesliga "by quite a distance" after hailing manager Louis van Gaal.

Last weekend's 1-1 draw against Nurnberg brought to an end a 10-game winning streak in the Bundesliga and, with Bayer Leverkusen also only drawing, it saw them miss the opportunity to move clear at the top of the table.

However, Hoeness does not expect it to be long before Bayern are sitting on top of the pile, and when they do get there, there will be no getting them down.

"We just have to remain patient," he said. "In the end, we will be German champions by quite a distance."

Nevertheless, Hoeness found words of praise for Leverkusen coach Jupp Heynckes, his close friend who he appointed to replace Jurgen Klinsmann for the last five matches of last season.

"Without Jupp, they would not be where they are now," Hoeness told the Bild newspaper.

"He is the key to their success. Now and again, I send him emails.

"Recently I wrote to him that the hunt is open, and signed it 'your hunting partner from the Tegernsee lake'."

Speaking at a congress in Munich on Monday, Hoeness praised van Gaal for the way he has defended and criticised the team in equal measures recently, saying he "reminds me of myself."

"After a game, there is always a lot of adrenaline there and the first reaction is to protect the players," explained Hoeness.

"And Louis is usually right. From what I saw on the television, we had plenty of chances (against Nurnberg).

"I was very pleased with the way he protected the team.

"He reminded me a bit of myself."