Bayern Munich have responded to Wesley Sneijder’s accusations that the club has not been supportive of Arjen Robben following his penalty miss in the Champions League final defeat to Chelsea, particularly since the winger was jeered by some fans in a home friendly against Netherlands.
Tuesday night’s exhibition match saw Bayern’s Robben don his national team colors and every time he touched the ball, sections of the crowd voiced their disapproval by whistling at him.
While he looked frustrated, Robben maintained his composure in a match that was scheduled as the farewell day for many of his club teammates and a warm-up for his compatriots.
Sneijder was one of the three Dutchmen who took exception to the treatment that Robben received, accusing Bayern of not defending the 28-year old in the face of adversity.
“The reaction from the fans was scandalous. Not only that, but over the last few days no-one at Bayern has defended him. By doing that, they’re shutting him out,” Sneijder said in his post-match interview.
Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge dismissed that notion and argued that only a minority of the crowd jeered the recently re-signed Robben. Nevertheless, he also took the opportunity to publicly support Robben during this difficult stretch.
“Some fans were clearly disappointed that Arjen Robben was playing in the Holland team and not in a Bayern Munich shirt just three days after the lost Champions League final. This, however, does not give anybody the right to boo one of our players,” Rummenigge remarked assertively.
He added: “Arjen Robben is, like all of the players, fans and friends of Bayern Munich, disappointed and deeply hurt by the unlucky and undeserved defeat in a penalty shoot-out in the Champions League final against Chelsea.
“But the style of FC Bayern and our fans is to reach out and help those who are lying on the ground, like the majority of the 33,000 fans did by chanting Arjen Robben’s name. We have received lots of reaction from our fans today, who want to apologise to Arjen Robben on behalf of those [few] who whistled.”
Former Bayern midfielder Mark Van Bommel was also shocked by the treatment dished out to Robben and although he joined Sneijder and coach Bert van Marwijk in urging Arjen to reconsider his future, the former Barcelona and Milan star also hinted that a transfer would be unlikely due to the player’s tough mindset.
“Arjen is very strong mentally, and comes back stronger each time after every setback. I don’t know what Arjen is going to do but this is a disgrace,” he concluded.