Lahm apologizes for critical interview

BY foxsports • November 9, 2009

Germany defender Philipp Lahm apologized to Bayern Munich on Monday for criticizing the management in a newspaper interview. The Bayern deputy captain already had been fined an undisclosed sum that the club said was unprecedented. German media speculated that it could have been ?50,000 ($75,000). Lahm appeared before the entire board Monday and apologized after what the club said had been a "very open, comprehensive and constructive talk." Lahm had criticized Bayern's transfer moves and coach Louis van Gaal's frequent formation changes in an interview published Saturday before the Bundesliga game against Schalke. The match ended in a 1-1 draw. A Bayern statement Sunday said Lahm had violated club rules in a "striking, unforgivable manner" and had broken an "absolute taboo" by publicly criticizing the club, coach and teammates. It is Bayern's policy that all interviews have to be cleared by the club, which was the case with Lahm. "Philipp realized that it would have been better to go to the board directly with his opinions," Bayern said, adding that the differences had been "settled." Italy striker Luca Toni was also fined an undisclosed sum Sunday for leaving the stadium at halftime after being substituted in the match against Schalke. Toni's departure from the stadium without permission was an "unacceptable lack of discipline," Bayern said, describing the Italian's fine as "substantial." Toni already had apologized to the club Sunday.