Bayer Leverkusen boss Heiko Herrlich says he can handle the criticism that has come his way after his side’s poor start to the season.
Leverkusen have begun the campaign with two straight defeats and the pressure is on Herrlich ahead of Saturday’s tough clash against leaders and champions Bayern Munich.
Leverkusen were talked up as potential title rivals to Bayern this season but early defeats to Borussia Moenchengladbach and VfL Wolfsburg mean they are already playing catch-up and could be pointless after three games if they lose again this weekend.
Herrlich admits it’s been a very disappointing start but insists he can handle the flak.
“Even before the season got under way we were seen as finishing in second place. Now suddenly everything is bad,” he said. “We do have potential in the team and we need to show that.
“But I am happy that it was me who was on the receiving end of it and not the players. It is better like that because I can handle that.”
Leverkusen finished fifth last season and Herrlich wants his players to focus on their own game, rather than being worried about how dangerous their opponents are.
He added: “We have to start doing our own things well and not look too much at the opponent. In the switch we have to defend together, work together. We have to do that over 90 minutes.”