By ESPNSTAR.com staff
Bayern Munich capped off last season with a second-place finish in the Champions League last season after losing to Chelsea in the final in addition to finishing second in the Bundesliga behind Borussia Dortmund. However, the Bavarians bounced back this season in spectacular fashion and are commanding a nine-point lead in the Bundesliga after easing through the group stage of the Champions League, where they will face Shakhtar Donetsk in the knockout stages.
Del Bosque believes that Bayern Munich are capable of genuinely challenging for the Champions League trophy this season under Jupp Heynckes, who has won the honour with Real Madrid in 1998.
"Together with Barcelona and Madrid, Bayern are the strongest team. Without a doubt," the trainer told Bild.
"We [Del Bosque and Heynckes] know each other and I respect him a lot. He did a great job as coach of Real Madrid.
"He earned the club their seventh Champions League victory in 1998 after the fans had to wait more than 30 years. He is doing well now."
Del Bosque also praised Germany coach Joachim Low for transforming the national side into a swift, dangerous and attacking team.
"I think his appearance and his style are very appealing. He is leading a project in which he gave German football a new game style, and he has done very well.
"In 2008 they were in the finals, semi-finals in 2010 and in 2012 they were back to the last four. Who would have thought that Spainw would win all three tournaments?
"The Germans can be proud of Low, even if they have not won a title with him yet."