The first of many? Hansi Flick (c.) got his hands on the UEFA Champions League trophy in Lisbon last weekend – but former Bayern Munich boss Ottmar Hitzfeld reckons it won’t be the last time the former Germany assistant boss does so. - © Frank Hoermann/ SVEN SIMON/SVEN SIMON/ Frank Hoermann/ Pool
The first of many? Hansi Flick (c.) got his hands on the UEFA Champions League trophy in Lisbon last weekend – but former Bayern Munich boss Ottmar Hitzfeld reckons it won’t be the last time the former Germany assistant boss does so. - © Frank Hoermann/ SVEN SIMON/SVEN SIMON/ Frank Hoermann/ Pool
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Ottmar Hitzfeld: Hansi Flick and Bayern Munich can replicate 1970s dominance

Former Bayern Munich head coach Ottmar Hitzfeld has backed the "sensational" Hansi Flick to guide the 2019/20 treble winners to a new era of dominance in the UEFA Champions League.

Flick took over at Bayern last November and led the club to a Bundesliga and DFB Cup double before watching them beat Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League final in Lisbon.

Hitzfeld, who was a European champion as coach of both Bayern and Borussia Dortmund, believes that a special team could now replicate what the club achieved in the 1970s by winning multiple European titles.

"He worked hard for everything and in his new position as head coach he's been sensational," Hitzfeld told Spox when discussing Flick's impact since stepping up to replace Niko Kovac.

"Hansi Flick has seized his chance and is the father of this success. Along with his sporting ability, what marks him out above all are his human qualities, because he’s an absolute team player and lends an ear to all of his colleagues.

Watch: Learn more about Bayern's treble triumph in 2019/20

"Flick can shape an era with this generation of Bayern players like we last saw with the European Cup triumphs of 1974, 1975, and 1976."

The Bayern side of the 1970s, which included stars like Franz Beckenbauer, Uli Hoeneß, Gerd Müller and current club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, delivered the record German champions' first three European Cup titles.

After helping Dortmund win that prize for the first time in their history in 1997, Hitzfeld then made Bayern kings of Europe for the fourth time in 2001.

He expects several of Bayern’s continental rivals to come back stronger in 2020/21, but feels the eight-in-a-row German champions have a "good chance" of defending the Champions League title.

Ottmar Hitzfeld (r.) was Bayern Munich head coach when Stefan Effenberg lifted the UEFA Champions League trophy in 2001 after a side that also included Hasan Salihamidzic and future club CEO Oliver Kahn beat Valencia on penalties. - /

"A golden generation is developing around the axis of [Manuel] Neuer, David Alaba, Thomas Müller and Robert Lewandowski," the 71-year-old said.

"A lot of young players like Joshua Kimmich and Serge Gnabry are already key players, and they’re incredibly steady for their age."

Hitzfeld said this demonstrated that Bayern have invested smartly in the transfer market in recent years, and he praised sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic for - among others - unearthing "a gem" like Canadian left-back Alphonso Davies.

But while the former Switzerland head coach is expecting Bayern to dominate on the European stage, he also feels that the recent success offers extra motivation for some of their domestic rivals.

"The Bundesliga has the best team in the world, and that will also inspire the other clubs in Germany," he said.