Sources in Germany are growing increasingly confident that Arsene Wenger will be appointed the next Bayern Munich manager with Niko Kovac staring down the barrel.
Bayern relinquished a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 with lowly Fortuna Dusseldorf on Saturday, their third consecutive game without victory. After a run of just two wins in their last eight matches, the champions are 5th in the table, nine points behind Borussia Dortmund.
Kovac, a summer appointment from Eintracht Frankfurt, is on the brink of being sacked, and German newspapers have already started speculating on who could replace him.
They compare the Frenchman to Ottmar Hitzfeld and Jupp Heynckes, both managers who won the Champions League and numerous Bundesliga titles at Bayern.
"The problem for Kovac in this context is the name Arsène Wenger. A guy like Hitzfeld and Heynckes, with aura and a knack for talent and super-stars - and currently available," the report said.
"The Bavarians know that Wenger is now an option for every troubled top club in Europe. So you have to be fast. That's why it could be over for Kovac very quickly."
The name of Arsène Wenger is discussed internally to replace Niko Kovac if the latter gets sacked. What speaks for Wenger is that he managed to rebuild Arsenal's team again and again, speaks perfect German and can deal with stars [Bild] pic.twitter.com/GB41JwZV0D— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) November 26, 2018
He has promised not to take another Premier League job and recently turned down the Fulham vacancy before Claudio Ranieri was appointed instead. But he is open to taking a managerial position in Europe and would surely jump at the chance to revive a club of Bayern's stature.