FRANKFURT, Germany (Reuters) - Bayern Munich midfielder Joshua Kimmich and Germany coach Hansi Flick on Friday refused to comment on widespread reports that the German champions had surprisingly parted ways with coach Julian Nagelsmann.
German media widely reported on Friday that Bayern had sacked Nagelsmann, who took over in 2021, and that he would be succeeded by former Chelsea coach Thomas Tuchel.
The club and Nagelsmann have not commented on the reports as club bosses were meeting in Munich.
"We were very surprised by the headlines but until now Bayern have not said anything on the matter. I will not comment on it also as a sign of respect for Julian," Flick told a news conference ahead of Germany's friendly international against Peru on Saturday.
Nagelsmann, who succeeded Flick at Bayern, had signed a five-year deal and as recently as earlier this week had the backing of the club board.
But Bayern have not been as dominant in the league as in the past 10 seasons when they won the league title, and are currently in second place, a point behind Borussia Dortmund whom they face on April 1.
They also play Manchester City in the Champions League quarter-finals on April 11.
"I can only say that Julian is an outstanding coach. I've had many coaches in my career and he is easily in the top three," Bayern and Germany midfielder Kimmich said.
"But I cannot say anything on this issue and please respect it. Obviously it is understandable that it is a hot issue at the moment but the club have not confirmed anything."
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Christian Radnedge)