Former Leeds United coach lands new role at German champions one year on from Elland Road exit

Ex-Leeds United assistant coach René Marić has been named Bayern Munich Under-19 boss shortly after joining the Bundesliga champions in a separate academy role.

Marić reunited with former Red Bull Salzburg sporting director Christoph Freund late last year to undertake responsibility for coaching development and playing philosophy at Bayern, but has now been promoted to U19s head coach.

The ex-Leeds coach was part of Jesse Marsch's backroom staff at Elland Road, departing in February 2023 at the same time as Marsch exited the club. Highly-regarded in coaching circles, Marić will now lead Bayern's youngsters in the UEFA Youth League knockout rounds and U19 Bundesliga, in which they sit seventh with six wins from 15 games this season.

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A statement released by Bayern on Monday read: "FC Bayern has released U19 coach Michael Hartmann with immediate effect. This was the result of a detailed analysis of the situation on Monday. Hartmann's successor is René Marić. The 31-year-old soccer teacher has been working on campus as team leader for coach development and game philosophy since the fall and led the team training for the first time on Monday evening."

Meanwhile, sporting director Freund said of Marić's appointment: "René Marić has so far completed a great job in our academy as team leader for coaching development and playing philosophy. We are very happy that he has now agreed at short notice to also take over the U19 team. We wish him much success in his tasks over the next few months.”

Marić admitted his surprise at the development but expressed his delight at being able to take the team under his wing. It is the Austrian's first official coaching role since his Elland Road exit.

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