Bayern Munich general manager Uli Hoeness has hinted that that Stuttgart coach Felix Magath could succeed Ottmar Hitzfeld as Bayern coach in 2005.

Hitzfeld’s contract expries in 2005 but it is unclear whether he will stay with Bayern beyond that date. Magath is regarded as an ideal replacement.

“I believe Felix Magath is free then,” Hoeness said when asked about the possibility of Hitzfeld quitting in 20005. .

President Franz Beckenbauer has already suggested that Magath would be suitable for the Munich position.

“Magath knows where his future could be,” declared Beckenbauer. ”

Stuttgart is certainly not his last managerial post.”

Magath guided Stuttgart to the runners-up spot behind Bayern last season and this season took his young side to the last 16 of the Champions League, where they lost 1-0 on aggregate to Chelsea.

“It is nice when our coach is focused upon,” said Stuttgart president Erwin Staudt.

“It emphasises his quality.”