PSG won’t sell prized defensive prospect to Bayern Munich
Paris Saint-Germain is going to do whatever it can to keep highly-touted defensive prospect El Chadaille Bitshiabu per Foot Mercato.
Bayern Munich was said to have interest in Bitshiabu, but PSG does not appear likely to sell the youngster any time soon:
According to our information, the Parisian club has no intention of letting go its U17 international, seen twice with the pros in the French Cup. Paris has taken out the barbed wire and will not let go its prospect, whatever the price offered and whatever the interested club. This is clear.
Bayern Munich’s rumored shift to being a “selling club” likely means that it will be on the hunt for young players like Bitshiabu moving forward. PSG, which is probably still a bit bitter about losing Tanguy Nianzou to Bayern Munich, seems intent to not make losing defensive prospects to the Bavarians become a pattern.
Bitshiabu currently has a deal with PSG through 2024.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski wants to join FC Barcelona?; Chelsea’s Antonio Rüdiger too old for Bayern?; Atletico Madrid closing in on Boubacar Kamara; Barca, Liverpool battle for Raphinha; Hulk ref?; and MORE!
Lewy eyeing Barca move? (Forbes)
In a report from Sport that was captured by Forbes, the word is that Bayern Munich superstar Robert Lewandowski is ready to make the move to FC Barcelona:
Robert Lewandowski wishes to join FC Barcelona, who have an offer ready for the striker according to reports. The reigning two-time FIFA The Best winner is a free man in June 2023, which perhaps forces his current club Bayern Munich to offload him before next season so as not to lose their second all-time top scorer on a free transfer.
According to Sport, Barca will offer the Poland international a four-year contract until 2026 as they believe that the model professional can still perform at the top level despite already being aged 33.
Barca don’t think that reaching an agreement with the Ballon d’Or hopeful will be a problem either given president Joan Laporta’s strong relationship with the player’s agent Pini Zahivi – who has represented Lewandowski since 2018 when he left the man that took him to German football, Cezary Kucharski, in 2010.
Lewandowski’s contract situation and negotiations are allegedly up in the air at this point, but we do know that there is mutual interest in getting a deal done in Bavaria — and also that Bayern Munich CEO Oliver Kahn has recognized that he needs to take a more hands-on approach in dealing with his star players.
There have, however, been some hard feelings built up on Lewandowski’s end that have left him feeling a bit disrespected. How this all plays out when the two sides finally meet remains to be seen.
Report: Bayern Munich front office, coaching staff clashing on Tanguy Nianzou’s development
According to Sport Bild’s Christian Falk (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidzic is unhappy with manager Julian Nagelsmann because the coach has not given young defender Tanguy Nianzou much of an opportunity to play this season.
In fairness to Nagelsmann, Nianzou has not been good when called upon. Sloppy positionally and with his challenges, Nianzou has been mistake-prone. Given his age (19) and his vast potential, though, there is no reason for Bayern Munich to write Nianzou off just yet. In fact, it appears that the only way to truly get a feel for what the player can be as a professional is to send him off on a loan assignment to a club where he would be able to play on a regular basis.
Even with the upcoming exit of Niklas Süle, Nianzou is not assured of consistent playing time next season at Bayern Munich. For all parties, it appears that a loan should be the next step for the player’s development.
Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann irked by criticism over tactics
Julian Nagelsmann is getting tired of pundits dragging his players — and tactics — through the mud.
Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann has read and heard enough.
The former RB Leipzig and Hoffenheim manager is getting sick of everyone taking shots at his tactics, formation choice, and players.
“The question has come up for the 1,437th time recently — and it will also come up at the next press conference,” Nagelsmann said (per Abendzeitung).
The normally calm and composed coach seems to be letting the barrage of criticism get to him a bit — and maybe rightfully so. His squad is sitting atop the Bundesliga table and has not lost a game in the Champions League all season.
Recently, Sky pundit Didi Hamann, stated that Bayern was only playing with “only three and a half defensive players” with the back three of Benjamin Pavard, Niklas Süle and Lucas Hernández and defensive midfielder Joshua Kimmich, which really seemed to get under Nagelsmann’s skin a bit.
“I’ll discuss it with Didi again because I think it’s a bit unfair to the players when you see how hard-working Serge, King and Leroy are,” Nagelsmann said. “I always try to consult with my players. And they also have the clear idea that the best staff is currently playing in the way we are playing. And I agree with that.”
Nagelsmann, though, did try to lighten up what seemed to be some frustration by taking a jab at Hamann in a playful way.
“Maybe (Hamann) used to see himself as a very offensive eight and didn’t feel like defending,” Nagelsmann said. “Didi also understands what I’m saying. I find it disrespectful towards players like Gnabry or Coman. The whole world of journalists claim that they can’t defend. These are two world-class players, so defending is part of it, as they have shown.”
Bayern Munich’s Sven Ulreich doesn’t want to be left out in the cold…again
Bayern Munich back-up goalkeeper Sven Ulreich has likely heard the rumors linking the Rekordmeister to Arminia Bielefeld starter Stefan Ortega and the veteran might be getting a little antsy about his own future.
According to Sky journalist Florian Plettenberg, Ulreich has not met with Bayern Munich as of yet regarding a new deal, but the 33-year-old wants to know if the club has any plans for him in the future — by the end of this month.
For Ulreich, this makes sense from a career-planning perspective:
By all accounts, Ulreich is a popular, seasoned option to play behind starter Manuel Neuer. Moreover, the relationship between Neuer and his current understudy appears to be rock solid, which is important considering how little Bayern Munich’s back-up goalkeepers actually play.
For players seeking any type of consistent field time, being Neuer’s back-up is not exactly a desirable position. Ulreich, however, is content in the role, which differs from Neuer’s heir apparent Alexander Nübel.
Should Neuer sign a contract extension, Nübel is expected to look for a new club.
Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann wants to help Dayot Upamecano get back on track
Bayern Munich defender Dayot Upamecano turned in a decent effort against Bayer Leverkusen when it comes to statistics. The Frenchman completed 90% of his passes, won both aerial duels, won three of four ground duels, and had three tackles.
The one awful moment was an errant pass that left a bad impression on many watching the match — including Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann.
“I will talk to him and show him solutions. Upa knows he doesn’t have to play a back pass (to Ulreich) there. You’ve to play simple and clear the ball, send it to the third row, even if that’s not a very smart solution at that moment,” Nagelsmann said after the match (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia).
While extremely solid at times, Upamecano has been inconsistent at various points of the season. Signed with the expectation that he was ready for prime time, Upamecano has shown that he has the potential to be a good starter, but also that he might need more seasoning before he is ready to be the lead dog on Bayern Munich’s backline.
The timeline on how quickly needs to ramp up has undoubtedly been expedited given the upcoming exodus of Niklas Süle.
Bayern Munich star Niklas Süle laments failure against Bayer Leverkusen, won’t talk about Borussia Dortmund
Bayern Munich defender Niklas Süle scored in the 18th minute to give his club an early 1-0 lead over Bayer Leverkusen, but the soon-to-be Borussia Dortmund center-back saw his squad scuffle and eventually settle for a draw.
It was not exactly the result anyone was looking for.
“We played one of our best 30 minutes of the season. After the unfortunate equalizer, we lost focus and lost the ball too easily. We allowed the opponent to get back into the game. That must not happen to us,” Süle said (as captured by @iMiaSanMia). “We allowed two or three big chances within five minutes. In the second half we had more control. But of course we wanted more today. The 1-1 draw is not enough.”
As for the upcoming move to Borussia Dortmund, Süle is not ready to discuss that just yet and would rather focus on trying to win the two remaining titles that Bayern Munich still fighting for.
“I deliberately haven’t spoken out yet. I’m still a Bayern player. There are still two big titles to play for and I will give everything to make sure Dortmund finish second this season,” Süle said (as captured by @iMiaSanMia). “I’m nothing but grateful. I’ll give everything for this club until the last day, hopefully with two more titles. I believe in that. I’m grateful for the way people here are coping with my decision.”
Tottenham Hotspur leads Bayern Munich on Djed Spence
It seems like Bayern Munich might have to look elsewhere to fill a role on the right defensive flank.
On Thursday, we saw the rumor break that Bayern Munich was interested in Middlesbrough right-back Djed Spence. According to Goal, however, Tottenham Hotspur if the favorite to land the 21-year-old:
The highly-rated right-back has been catching the eye during a loan spell at Nottingham Forest and is expected to be on the move this summer. Tottenham are favourites to sign Middlesbrough right-back Djed Spence this summer, GOAL has learned, with the Nottingham Forest loanee attracting interest from across Europe.
There has been talk of Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich joining the race for the talented 21-year-old, with a number of teams in Germany said to be monitoring the buccaneering defender’s progress.
Sjed is just one of many names that have been linked to Bayern Munich, so it would not be shocking it the Rekordmeister’s alleged pursuit of the right-back was not much more than kicking the tires on a player who fits the positional profile.
Report: Bayern Munich interested in Noussair Mazraoui, warming to Benjamin Pavard as center-back
Ryan Gravenberch is not the only Ajax player that Bayern Munich has its eyes on.
According to Tz reporters Mano Bonke and Philipp Kessler (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), the Rekordmeister is scoping right-back Noussair Mazraoui as well.
The 24-year-old is deemed to be a “perfect fit” for Julian Nagelsmann’s system — which looks to feature a back-three.
Bayern Munich, however, is not alone in wanting Mazraoui, however. FC Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund, and AC Milan are also rumored to be interested in the Ajax defender.
Interestingly, Bayern Munich is also starting to think that Benjamin Pavard is looking like a more serious solution to be part of the center-back rotation next season. With Pavard, Lucas Hernandez, and Dayot Upamecano, the club would not have to feel as dire a need to bring in an expensive new center-back — though, Bayern Munich looks like it is still going to work through the available players on the market.
Options to replace Niklas Süle not thrilling Bayern Munich brass
With the news that Chelsea FC’s Andreas Christensen is closing in on a deal with FC Barcelona, the immediate thought for most Bayern Munich fans was…”who’s next?”
That’s a great question — and one that the Bayern Munich brass cannot easily answer because no one has been all that impressive to them.
According to a report from Sport Bild (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), Bayern Munich’s decision makers are not convinced by either Matthias Ginter and Nico Schlotterbeck.
At this point, the favored candidate is Torino’s Gleison Bremer, which is a bit shocking given Bremer’s name only recently began being linked to Bayern Munich.
Sport1’s Kerry Hau and P.J. Berger are reporting that Bremer is ahead of Ginter on Bayern Munich’s wish list and that the club is not “serious” about Ginter. At this stage, Ginter might be more interested in Bayern Munich than the club is in the player.
The primary issue with Bremer in the eyes of Bayern Munich is that the club would have to pay a fee to Torino for the Brazilian.
As for Christensen, it appears FC Barcelona is willing to meet his request to double his current pay, which is rumored to be €5 million per season.
Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich reacts to hard-fought victory over Eintracht Frankfurt
Bayern Munich star Joshua Kimmich helped his team secure a 1-0 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt
“It was a hard-fought win. I think we did well and should have taken the lead earlier. The way we got the win was also good. The last 10, 15 minutes, the way we pushed each other, that was good. A win like this is also fun,” Kimmich told Sky (as captured by @iMiaSanMia).
Kimmich would like to see the squad gain some momentum on this, but knows the road to a title in the Bundesliga is not easy.
“Today the attitude was great, we can build on that,” said Kimmich (as captured by Tz). “We always have a lot of offensive players on the field. But when I see how Sané or Gnabry defend. It’s not just up to the defensive players. Leipzig has stabilized, BVB has strength to chase us in the Bundesliga. Leverkusen also has good quality, young, strong players.”
How will Bayern Munich replace Thomas Müller vs. Eintracht Frankfurt?
Okay, so the week started with some horrible news. Mr. Bayern himself, Thomas Müller, has tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss out on Saturday’s trip to Eintracht Frankfurt. Judging from the fact that Bayern Munich haven’t won at Frankfurt in the past three years, and are currently on a two game losing streak to Die Adler, the outlook does not look good as of now.
But whatever the outlook is, we got a game to play, and Müller will not be there. There’s no getting around it. So how exactly will Bayern line up in Frankfurt? This shouldn’t be too big a deal, considering it’s just one player missing (apart from the long term absentees), but Thomas Müller is not a player you can simply replace with another. What’s more, coach Julian Nagelsmann has been known to switch up formations a lot nowadays, so this makes it even harder to predict a solid lineup. With that being said, let’s try to make our best guess.
Option A. 4-2-3-1
The 4-2-3-1 that so many fans (myself included) were yearning for made an appearance against Greuther Fürth last Sunday, and it wasn’t pretty. But maybe, just maybe, this time will be different. Let’s see how this could look.
As per a kicker report, Jamal Musiala, who recently recovered from a COVID bout himself, was likely to start against Frankfurt. The logical answer would be to slot Musiala into Müller’s usual spot at the 10, right behind Robert Lewandowski. Flank him with two out of Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sané, and Kingsley Coman, put Marcel Sabitzer and Joshua Kimmich behind them, and presto! After all, Hansi Flick utilized Musiala as a 10 when Müller was out back then, and it worked fine. Remember the Lazio game in the Champions League?
But this is Nagelsmann we’re talking about. His 4-2-3-1 is quite different from Flick’s, alternating between a 3-4-2-1 at times. This begs the question: can Musiala play that delicate role of attacking midfielder/auxiliary striker that Müller does so well? Hard to say. If not, Nagelsmann could opt to start all three wingers at once, allowing either Gnabry or Coman to play a slightly more advanced role than usual, and playing Sané in a more central, playmaking role. Of course, this is assuming that Coman is fit to play; he wasn’t in the squad against Fürth due to muscular problems.
Outlook: Ulreich – Pavard, Upamecano, Süle, Hernández – Kimmich, Sabitzer – Gnabry, Musiala, Sané – Lewandowski
Ulreich – Pavard, Upamecano, Süle, Hernández – Kimmich, Sabitzer – Gnabry, Sané, Coman – Lewandowski
Option B. 3-2-4-1 or 3-2-5
Ah, the almost suicidal, no wing-back back three. It’s provided a fair few heart attacks to Bayern fans around the world. Surprisingly enough, though, it’s also provided a few decent results. Considering the fact that the team showed improvement throughout the last few games when the formation was used, it would be foolish to discount it from the realm of possibilities. Plus, this is Nagelsmann. He loves back threes so much, he calls his wife that.
Now, the defense and half the midfield builds themselves. Three out of Bayern’s four available center backs will man the defense, while Kimmich will patrol the midfield. But wait! How does the rest of the team fit in?
Let’s assume that all three wingers will start as per usual (again, provided that Coman is fit). That leaves one spot in the attacking line, and one spot next to Kimmich. Musiala and Sabitzer are the clear candidates to fill those two spots. The question is, who fits in where? The aforementioned kicker report suggested that in light of Corentin Tolisso’s injury, Musiala was the prime candidate to start alongside Kimmich in midfield. That was before Müller’s COVID infection, though. Does this mean Musiala moves up into the attacking line, with Sabitzer taking his spot in midfield? Or vice versa? We’ve rarely seen Sabitzer in a highly advanced role after he arrived at Bayern, so it’s not that likely that Nagelsmann would start him right behind Lewandowski. But we’ve also seen him start as a winger against Fürth, so it could be a possibility. A small one, but still.
Outlook: Ulreich – Pavard, Süle, Hernández – Kimmich, Sabitzer – Gnabry, Musiala, Sané, Coman – Lewandowski
Option C. 3-4-1-2 or 3-5-2
I know, I know, who in their right mind would play twin strikers at Bayern? Well, it actually happened a lot more recently than expected. Let’s go back to the Fürth game again. The second half saw Nagelsmann introduce Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting in lieu of Omar Richards, playing the Cameroonian striker alongside Lewandowski. Müller slotted in right behind and between those two, and lo and behold, it resulted in four goals. Choupo was pretty productive in that role, bagging an assist and a goal. Of course, just because it worked against the worst team in the Bundesliga doesn’t guarantee that it’ll work against a much stronger Eintracht, but there’s also no reason it shouldn’t work again, right?
Again, either Musiala or Sabitzer could play that playmaker role behind the two strikers, with the other one partnering Kimmich in midfield. I’m going to assume that Musiala will play in front, just because he’s a more attack-oriented player than Sabitzer.
Outlook: Ulreich – Pavard, Süle, Hernández – Gnabry, Kimmich, Sabitzer, Sané – Musiala – Lewandowski, Choupo-Moting
Omar Richards talks move to Bayern Munich, Robert Lewandowski, Julian Nagelsmann’s cool demeanor
Omar Richards picked up a start against SpVgg Greuther Fürth during Bayern Munich’s 4-1 win and while the Englishman’s day was cut short by an early substitution to help spark the offense, the seldom-used left-back is soaking in the experience.
Despite not getting a ton of playing time this season, Richards appears very happy to be in Munich.
“I remember the first point of contact was in the big meeting room. I was sitting in there and had been early. All these people I’d seen on TV and played with on Fifa are all walking past high-fiving me. “I was thinking, ‘What is going on? I must be in some dream or something.’ My agent called and told me Bayern Munich are watching me, they’re interested, and I’m thinking, ‘What? This can’t be true.’ I almost put the phone down on him. I literally didn’t believe it until I got on a Zoom call with them,” Richards told The Times (as captured by @iMiaSanMia).
Richards knew moving to a club like Bayern Munich would be tough, but he said other players have been very helpful.
“From the first day, he (Joshua Kimmich) was really helpful to me, always checking in on me, like a big brother. He doesn’t have to do that. That’s so elite from him and, as a new person coming in, I’ll remember it for the rest of my life,” Richards said. “I’m in a team with superstars and some of the best players, and I’m still new to it. But, the thing is, I’m in the right place and I’m only getting better each day, so you never know what can happen.”
Richards is also happy to be playing for a manager like Julian Nagelsmann, who keeps an even keel.
“He comes into training sometimes on his motorbike, I think it’s a Harley-Davidson. He’s always proper cool, always happy and approachable,” Richards remarked. “After a while I realized everything he was making me do had a reason behind it. There’s new ideas all the time, everything is fresh and the training leads the way we play in games.”
Finally, Richards said he learned very quickly that Robert Lewandowski is always “on” and that you cannot ever tale him lightly in training.
“You can’t switch off at any moment when you’re around him. He’s very clinical, he’s good at everything, really. I would play FIFA with Lewandowski and now I’m playing alongside him. It’s really crazy,” Richards said.
Richards has played 448 minutes in 14 appearances across all competitions this season. The 24-year-old has one assist.
Bayern Munich putting together plans should two midfielders leave this summer
Earlier, we heard that things might not be looking good for Corentin Tolisso to sign a contract extension with Bayern Munich.
Now, however, it appears that the club is putting together contingency plans to cover the loss of two midfielders: Tolisso and Marc Roca per Sport1:
According to SPORT1 information, those responsible for the record champions are currently planning two departures in the central midfielder position for the new season! The hottest farewell candidates: Corentin Tolisso (27), who is trending towards free transfers after his muscle injury, and Marc Roca (25), who under coach Julian Nagelsmann, despite convincing performances around the turn of the year, does not have too rosy prospects for regular has playing time.
Interestingly, the planned replacements are two names we recently heard connect with midfield roles at Bayern Munich — one internal candidate and one external.
So it’s no wonder that FCB’s squad planners are already putting out feelers for possible midfield reinforcements. SPORT1 knows: The Dutch top talent Ryan Gravenberch (19) from Ajax Amsterdam arouses the interest of the people of Munich. The Dutch media reported about it first. And they are also heading for an internal solution in central midfield: Last week, SPORT1 reported on Bayern’s internal mind games to permanently retrain offensive talent Jamal Musiala (18). Not much would change if Gravenberch signed.
Sport1 did, however, acknowledge that it is curious if Gravenberch would be willing to accept a back-up role behind incumbent starters Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka:
It is questionable whether Bayern would want to spend so much on a perspective player with all their corona-related austerity measures, who would initially have to be content with the role of backup for established players such as Joshua Kimmich (27) or Leon Goretzka (27).
Whatever the case, the future is not exactly sounding rosy for either Tolisso or Roca in Munich.
Bayern Munich 4-1 Greuther Furth: Initial reactions and observations
Initial reactions and observations
The scoreline might not show it, but Greuther Furth gave Bayern Munich a serious scare. Some timely substitutions from Nagelsmann and a tweak in the tactics eventually took them down, but this kind of play leaves a lot to be desired.
Great performance by Marcel Sabitzer today, he was finally involved in the way we want him to be. Hopefully he starts showing his quality more often from here on out.
Lewandowski gets service, he gets goals. It really is that simple.
Serge Gnabry was much better in the second half once he stopped trying to constantly cut inside and dribble into the box. His assist to Choupo came off a well timed run and he created Lewandowski’s first goal as well. Not an amazing game, but definitely a step in the right direction for him.
Leroy Sane maybe shouldn’t play so far inside. He was more effective holding his wide left position.
Full time: Bayern Munich win 4-1.
90’+1’ — GOAL! Choupo-Moting makes it 4-1! Gnabry with the assist.
81’ — GOAL! Lewandowski makes it 3-1 from a corner, assist to Sule.
67’ — They’ve hit the post! This game isn’t over yet!
60’ — GOAL! Furth get an own goal, putting Bayern on 2-1.
46’ — GOAL! Lewandowski draws it level in the first minute of the 2nd half.
45’ — The second half is underway. Choupo-Moting is on for Richards.
42’ — Goal. Well, crap. A free kick is deflected in from Furth.
25’ — Sub: Gnabry on for Tolisso.
21’ — Tolisso looks like he’s injured, being reviewed on the sidelines.
Kickoff: We’re underway in Munich!
One hour until kickoff: We have lineups! Julian Nagelsmann chooses to field Bayern Munich in what looks like a 4-3-3 formation with Omar Richards and Marcel Sabitzer finally getting starts. Looks like Thomas Muller and Leroy Sane are the wingers today.
RB Salzburg vs Bayern Munich: Lineups, team news, returning to the back-three, and more!
Has Nagelsmann learned his lesson yet? We’ll have to wait and see.
Bayern Munich has a tendency to bounce back strongly from defeats, which is a good thing because you can’t afford slip ups in the Champions League. RB Salzburg may not be one of the tournament favorites, but they deserve their place among Europe’s top 16 teams, which is more than you can say for any of Bayern’s competitors in the Bundesliga.
Julian Nagelsmann knows he has to change tactics. But what, exactly, will he do?
Manuel Neuer (knee), Leon Goretzka (knee), and Alphonso Davies (myocarditis) are all ruled out of this game (and many others). Jamal Musiala is in quarantine after catching COVID so he’s out as well. That’s four key players who all could’ve started, which won’t help Nagelsmann choose a starting XI. Thankfully, he has a squad full of good (or at least decent) backups. It’s debatable whether he sees it that way, though.
As usual, we expect Thomas Muller and Robert Lewandowski to start up top. The lineup will probably be another variant of the back-three that we saw against RB Leipzig, so all three of Kingsley Coman, Serge Gnabry, and Leroy Sane will be expected to play. One will have to be a wingback in this setup, which is risky given Salzburg’s wealth of attacking options. However, Nagelsmann was adamant in his press conference that he wouldn’t compromise on his offense-first approach, so don’t expect Bayern to keep a clean sheet in tomorrow’s game.
The midfield is something of a mystery, given that there are no good options to partner up with Joshua Kimmich. Corentin Tolisso seems like the obvious choice, but Marcel Sabitzer has been improving in recent games and has a much better track record than the Frenchman if you disregard his Bayern performances. Marc Roca is somewhere in the mix, but very unlikely to start. Honestly, given that Champions League games are not the place where you want to experiment, we’ll assume that Kimmich and Tolisso will start together in midfield on Wednesday.
The defense is where all the problems lie at the moment, and it’s tough to see how it can get better. Nagelsmann will probably go with a back-three, which means putting Lucas Hernandez, Niklas Sule, and Benjamin Pavard together in the center. They’ll be tasked with containing Marcus Jaissle’s free-scoring Salzburg side, including the dangerous Karim Adeyemi. Dayot Upamecano, who’s currently in a bit of a rut, will probably sit this one out.
With Bayern missing their captain, Sven Ulreich will step up between the sticks. Here’s what the lineup should look like:
Bayern Munich to pursue Chelsea’s right-back César Azpilicueta?
Bayern Munich has been rumored to be looking for another option at right-back for almost two years, but according to Mundo Deportivo journalist Roger Torello, the Bavarians might have finally zeroed in a target: Chelsea FC’s Cesar Azpilicueta.
At 32-years-old, Azpilicueta is also rumored to be on the radar of FC Barcelona, but it is unclear at this stage if the veteran even wants to leave Chelsea. Per Torello (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), Azpilicueta wants to sit down with Chelsea again before making a decision on his future.
For Bayern Munich, Azpilicueta would not represent a long-term solution at right-back, but a player to come in and compete with Benjamin Pavard and Josip Stanisic. Again, though, should Julian Nagelsmann formally shift to a back-three, Azpilicueta would seemingly have the skill-set to play as more of a wing-back as well.
With Pavard seeking a move to center-back, Bayern Munich might have to start expediting its hunt for a right-back.
BARÇA NEWSBayern Munich ready to offer huge €11 million salary to Barcelona defensive target
Barcelona have been chasing the signing of Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen for quite a while now. However, things could get difficult in their pursuit of the Dane as Bayern Munich have also entered the race.
Christensen, who has been on the books of Chelsea since 2012, could be set for a parting of ways at the end of the season. The centre-back is in the final few months of his contract with the current European and World champions and could end up leaving on a free transfer in the summer.
Barça have been on his trails for a while and recent reports had even indicated that an agreement over a pre-contract could be on the horizon.
However, as per a report from Abendzeitung (h/t Calciomercato), Bayern Munich have also thrown their hat in the rings to sign the Denmark international.
The Bavarian giants are in the market to replace Niklas Sule, who will be joining Borussia Dortmund on a free transfer at the end of the season. While the German champions have been linked with Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger in the past, it seems like they have Christensen in their sights as well.
Bayern Munich has had a crazy week when it comes to its backline.
The club learned that Niklas Süle would be transferring to Borussia Dortmund, before seeing the backline play terrible against VfL Bochum.
Knowing reinforcements will be needed for next season, Bayern Munich is likely getting antsy to ensure that it can back-fill Süle’s role with a good player. According to Abendzeitung, the Bavarians could be looking to get really serious about a financial offer to Chelsea FC’s Andreas Christensen:
At FC Bayern, Andreas Christensen (25) is the absolute dream player to succeed Niklas Süle, who will leave in the summer. Although the signs for a free transfer of the Danish national player from Chelsea to Munich were actually very good, the “kicker” and the “Bild” are now reporting that the negotiations could prove difficult.
While it seems fairly certain that the centre-back will leave the ‘Blues’ in the summer and talks with the Londoners have stalled, can Bayern benefit from this? The tense relationship with coach Thomas Tuchel’s club is based on the fact that the club has already agreed with Christensen on an extension, but the Dane is said to have demanded a higher salary afterwards. An absurdity for Chelsea, who do not want to create a precedent for other players.
The topic of salary could now also become a problem at FC Bayern. Although those responsible for the club are absolutely convinced of the Danish central defender, they do not want to give up the corona-related austerity measures for Christensen. The German record champions are said to be ready to pay the 25-year-old an annual fee of eleven million, but whether Christensen will sign a contract with Munich for this amount is completely open.
The Danish national player is currently said to be earning almost five million euros in London, and his salary is said to have been increased to over 7.2 million in the offered contract extension.
More concerning might be that FC Barcelona is reportedly closing in on a deal with Christensen as well. Between the high salary and Barca’s current upper-hand, it does not seem all too likely that Christensen is going to be in Germany next season.
Daily Schmankerl: Borussia Dortmund adding Nico Schlotterbeck to join Bayern Munich’s Niklas Süle?; Robert Lewandowski is amazing; Liverpool pursuing Renato Sanches?; Newcastle United plotting strong push for Thomas Müller?; and MORE!
Schlotterbeck to join Süle at BVB? (kicker)
Is Borussia Dortmund building a completely German-engineered backline? With Bayern Munich’s Niklas Süle already on the roster for next season, BVB is reportedly considering an acquisition of SC Freiburg star and Germany international Nico Schlotterbeck:
In the event that Akanji decides to make a change, another position would have to be filled for the coming season: In addition to Süle, only Mats Hummels (33) would definitely be in the squad for 2022/23, with the injury -prone Dan-Axel Zagadou (22) running everything towards a new contract. Soumaila Coulibaly (18), who is now performing well in the U23s after tearing his cruciate ligament last summer, could move up to become number five central defender . A permanent commitment of the previously loaned Marin Pongracic (24) from VfL Wolfsburg is no longer an issue.
In addition to Süle, another German national player could become one: Nico Schlotterbeck (22) from SC Freiburg would be the type of player predestined for the idea of ??coach Marco Rose, both in a basic order with a three-man and four-man chain. There would be financial scope for this solution if Akanji were transferred.
And Freiburg is probably waving a full fee for Schlotterbeck for the last time this summer, according to kicker information, his working paper ends in 2023. Even if Schlotterbeck has not explicitly ruled out staying, the club’s efforts to extend the contract will not have much chance of success.
Adding both Süle and Schlotterbeck would certainly be an incredible set of moves for Borussia Dortmund. Does the club have the money to make it happen?
Nico Schlotterbeck won’t confirm, nor deny talks with Bayern Munich
Former coach says Christensen a fit for Bayern (Sport1)
Depending on who you believe, Bayern Munich is either fully in on Chelsea FC’s Andreas Christensen — or passing on the Dane because he wants too much money. Regardless, his old coach, André Schubert, thinks he would be a natural fit in Bavaria:
A supporter of a Bayern deal would be Christensen’s former coach at Borussia Mönchengladbach, André Schubert.
“Christensen would go well with Bayern and Julian Nagelsmann because he is very intelligent, strategically very, very good and clever and – as I just mentioned – has a very good positional play,” said Schubert, who played between September 2015 and December 2016 Danes coached at Gladbach, at Sky .
In the build-up game, Christensen “does what is expected of him. If he has to take more risks or dribble more often, he will do that too.” Schubert continues: “He’s someone who plays a back three, a back four and definitely also in front of the defence. I could well imagine that he could help Bayern.”
The imminent farewell to Niklas Süle leaves a gap in Bayern’s central defense. Should Christensen not extend his contract in London, he would be available on a free transfer – and that also brings FC Barcelona onto the scene. As reported by Sport from Spain, the 25-year-old is also in demand there. The financially troubled top club from La Liga invested a lot in the offensive in the winter, now the defense should be strengthened.
Report: Bayern Munich hunting for a center-back, right-back, and defensive midfielder
Can Bayern Munich afford three quality players this summer?
According to a report from Sport Bild (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), Bayern Munich will be scouring the transfer market for three positions this summer: center-back, right-back, and defensive midfield.
With the news that Niklas Süle would be departing for Borussia Dortmund breaking earlier this week, it is no surprise that the Bavarians would be eyeing up a replacement. In addition, Bayern Munich has been rumored to be in the market for a right-back for quite a while.
Given that Benjamin Pavard can occupy both positions, this news might not be such a good sign for his future. It will be fascinating to see how Pavard reacts should the club bring in both a center-back and a right-back. Though he has been much better of late, a poor decision with positioning cost Bayern Munich a goal against RB Leipzig last Saturday.
In addition, Sport Bild is reporting that even though Corentin Tolisso has recently put forth some quality performances, Bayern Munich is still expecting him to leave at the end of the season.
Herbert Hainer promises Neuer, Lewandowski, Muller to end careers at Bayern Munich
The trio of Bayern’s stars are all expected to sign contract extensions soon.
Navigating through contract situations has been a running theme at Bayern Munich this season. A handful of key players either had, or still have upcoming expiring contracts at the club, but Bayern has already been able to tie down Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, and Kingsley Coman to new deals. It has just been officially confirmed by the player himself that Niklas Sule will be joining Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund this summer, but it’s still expected that Manuel Neuer, Thomas Muller, and Robert Lewandowski will sign contract extensions at some point in the not-so-distant future.
For Neuer, Muller, and Lewandowski, all three of their current contracts are set to expire the summer of 2023, though it is fully expected all three will sign extensions. “I would be happy if all three would end their careers at FC Bayern. And I also firmly believe that this will happen,” Herbert Hainer said to Bild TV over the weekend (Abendzeitung). “The three know what they have in Bayern. We know what we have in these three players. Thomas Müller belongs to Bayern like the Frauenkirche belongs to Munich,” Bayern’s president continued.
Unlike the Sule to Dortmund situation, and likewise David Alaba leaving for Real Madrid last summer, Neuer, Muller, and Lewandowski have a little over a season left on their contracts, giving Bayern some time to get everything sorted. It would be absolutely devastating to lose any one of those three players on a free transfer in the event new deals were not agreed upon, without understating Sule’s importance to the club at all. It has just become increasingly clear over the past month that he would not be signing an extension and would be leaving this summer.
“We still have a little time, they have a contract until 2023. But as I said, I would be happy if all three of them ended their careers with us,” Hainer concluded on his TV appearance. For three players that have been so important to Bayern for so many years, it’s nearly impossible to imagine any of them playing for a different club, though there would never be a lack of suitors if a door were to open up for either of them. For now, though, Hainer’s remarks reinforce the desire of the club to tie them down to new deals before the summer of 2023.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich, Chelsea linked to Juventus star Matthijs de Ligt, Niklas Süle; Tottenham Hotspur also eyeing Süle; The Skynet Cafe (!?); Manchester City to make a strong play for Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland; and MORE!
Bayern, Chelsea linked to De Ligt, Süle to Spurs? (The Hard Tackle)
Bayern Munich and Chelsea FC are both being linked to Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt. At this stage it seems highly unlikely that Bayern Munich would be willing to spend what it would take to get De Ligt from Juventus, so Chelsea is likely the favorite in the race.
With Thomas Tuchel’s side also rumored to be monitoring Niklas Süle closely, could Chelsea be dreaming of the “all-chonk” backline? Both Süle and De Ligt have (unfairly) been labeled as having — or even potentially having — weight issues.
Süle once had to go as far as saying we was no “lard-arse”, while Manchester United once famously stopped pursuing De Ligt because they were — allegedly — scared he would end up fat because his dad was — reportedly — heavy.
Of course, we think the “fat” reports are completely insane and stupid, but this is the world we live in:
Chelsea are leading Bayern Munich in the race to sign wantaway Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt next summer.
According to Italian daily La Stampa, as relayed by Calciomercato.it, Matthijs de Ligt could be set for a move away from Juventus in the summer. The defender is not happy with his current club and is looking for a change of scenery as per his super-agent, Mino Raiola. It has now put multiple clubs on red alert as they look to prise him away from Turin at the end of the season.
Chelsea are among the clubs interested in the services of de Ligt and are even leading Bayern Munich in the race to sign the Dutchman next season. With Juventus open to receiving offers for the defender, the Premier League giants could be in a better position to match their demands as opposed to the Bavarian heavyweights, who are still reeling from the loss of significant revenue due to the pandemic.
Despite my desire to see De Ligt and Süle teamed up, Tottenham Hotspur could be making a push for the Germany international as well:
Bayern, though, are in the market for defensive reinforcements as they prepare for life without Niklas Sule. The German international is set to leave the club when his contract expires at the end of the season. Chelsea are also in contention to sign Sule next season, although they are set to face stiff competition from Tottenham.
Whatever the case, it does appear that De Ligt is at least somewhat serious about leaving Juventus (per Sky):
Mino Raiola is ready to look for a new club for Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt as the Serie A side’s management will not match Dusan Vlahovic’s contract in talks over fresh terms.
If Süle has to leave Bayern Munich, I’d love to see him teamed with De Ligt, but that is a longshot.
Bayern Munich’s Niklas Sule: “I’m no lard-arse”
Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt baffled by Manchester United thinking he’d get fat
More Süle to Chelsea talk (Football London)
Chelsea seems to be very serious about its pursuit of Süle, though it seems doubtful that the clubs will lose all three defenders listed below:
The real test regarding the strength of the board’s connection to the Blues boss will come in the summer with at least three moves expected to be completed.
Jules Kounde, Declan Rice and Aurelien Tchouameni are three names high up on the priority list according to The Athletic but on top of this, Niklas Sule could be an easy deal to complete if the six year plan was to be followed.
Two centre-halves and two midfielders on this list showcase the areas of need that require fixing in the summer.
At the back, currently all of Antonio Rudiger, Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen are going to walk out the door come the end of the season for free.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich and Manchester United still scoping Boubacar Kamara; Doubts on Niklas Süle’s speed refuted; Dusan Vlahovic signs with Juventus; Bayern players honored; and MORE!
Bayern, United still chasing Kamara (L’Equipe via @iMiaSanMia)
Bayern Munich and Manchester United are both still in pursuit of Olympique Marseille midfielder Boubacar Kamara, but the French club does not appear to be ready to let 22-year-old leave this winter.
In fact, Marseille seems more likely to take the chance that Kamara could leave for free in the summer.
Bayern Munich, Chelsea, and Barcelona holding talks with Marseille midfielder Boubacar Kamara
Süle’s criticism prompts pundit retort (@kevinhatchard)
Bayern Munich defender Niklas Süle has had a hell of week and is now dealing with the perception that he might be, well, slow.
Of course, some fans who are not overly familiar with the Germany international might look at the big fella and assume he is a lumbering oaf. Süle, though, is anything but that.
Kevin Hatchard was there to dispel any of those notions:
Bayern Munich Alumni: Niko Kovac might be in line to replace Adi Hütter at struggling Borussia Mönchengladbach
Borussia Mönchengladbach, currently in the midst of an ugly relegation battle, needs a coach to revive them much the way that Lucien Favre did years ago.
Former Bayern Munich manager, Niko Kovac might be headed back to the Bundesliga if Sport Bild is to be believed! Adi Hütter, capable of beating Bayern Munich and just about nobody else, not even 2.Bundesliga strugglers Hannover 96, might see his time at the club coming to an end.
Hütter was an expensive coach; this might be the primary reason why Gladbach has been reluctant to let him go for a while although the writing is on the wall. Max Eberl had made Gladbach a rather interesting club for a player to sign and of course, Gladbach’s own rich history speaks for itself.
However, due to COVID-19 and lack of attendance, Gladbach is losing money and relegation might turn out to be a very expensive proposition. I would have loved to see Lucien Favre back at the club but it seems that the Foals have reached out to the pragmatic Kovac.
Hütter apparently has two games to turn the fortunes of the club around. If he does not win the next two games against fellow strugglers Arminia Bielefeld and Augsburg, his time at the Foals might be coming to an end.
I, for one, will be happy to see him go. Gladbach deserves much better. And Kovac might be the perfect man for the job.
Report: Alexander Nübel will seek to leave Bayern Munich if Manuel Neuer signs deal through 2025
It seems as if Alexander Nübel has mapped out a “go forward” plan.
It has been a wild couple of weeks for Bayern Munich loanee Alexander Nübel.
The AS Monaco goalkeeper is pushing to get better every day, but the news that Manuel Neuer was expected to sign a contract extension probably left the 25-year-old confused.
Things might be clearing up, though — for better or worse.
According to Sky’s Florian Plettenberg, Bayern Munich informed Nübel’s representatives that the club would likely be extending the contract of Neuer:
Report: Niklas Süle has decided to leave Bayern Munich (update: confirmed)
According to Sport Bild and Sport1, the Germany international will leave Bavaria.
According to a report from Sport Bild’s Christian Falk, Niklas Süle has made the decision to leave Bayern Munich at the end of this season:
The decision has been made — and it hits FC Bayern very hard. Niklas Süle (26) is leaving the record champion at the end of the season!
BILD knows: The defender informed those responsible a few weeks ago that he would not extend his contract, which expires in the summer.
This news will absolutely create a difficult situation for the Bavarians. Not only does the club lose a top-notch defender, but it will lose him on a free transfer. The loss of such a valuable commodity for free is an awful business scenario in this market. Bild continues,
It was only on Sunday that President and Chairman of the Supervisory Board Herbert Hainer (67) said about Süle on Sky: “We have made an offer to Niklas. Now it’s up to him to accept it or not to accept it. Of course, it has to happen within a certain period of time, because then we have to position ourselves accordingly. I don’t know the exact date right now, but it will certainly be at some point in the foreseeable future that he will confess or even say what his wishes are. And then we will talk to him.”
Süle is said to have been surprised by this statement.
Because: Bavaria actually made Süle a new contract offer with an improved annual salary of around 10 million euros. However, Süle had long since rejected this when he let the club know about his decision.
If the report is true, Süle could join David Alaba, Jerome Boateng, and Javi Martinez, as recent free transfer that recently left Bayern Munich.
Per Falk, Bayern Munich is monitoring Chelsea FC’s Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rüdiger, along with Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Denis Zakaria as potential replacements for the summer transfer window. All three players would be free transfers.
Bayern Munich has also been linked to SC Freiburg’s Nico Schlotterbeck, Juventus’ Matthijs de Ligt, and Gladbach’s Matthias Ginter. Ginter would also come free, while Schlotterbeck and De Ligt are expected to command hefty transfer fees.
As for Süle, the defender’s most prominent suitors are FC Barcelona, Newcastle United, and Chelsea.
Match Awards from Bayern Munich’s 4:1 win against Hertha Berlin
Jersey Swap: Linus Gechter
It was a tough match in prospect for Hertha Berlin, and Bayern Munich dominated throughout the entire match. And without Linus Gechter and Alexander Schwolow, Bayern could have won with a double-digit number on the scoreboard. Gechter is a very young, 17-year-old defender who was solid today and even had a clearance on the goal-line. Schwolow was also great today, but he made an error that led to a goal. But overall, both of them were one of the best Hertha’s players on the pitch.
Der Kaiser: Niklas Süle
Bayern’s backline was solid tonight, up until Dayot Upamecano came in. But, if we forget that ‘minor’ mistake, the visiting team’s defenders were solid, and one of the best performers tonight was Niklas Süle. He was solid on the ground, won tons of duels, and had a couple of great passes. Süle immediately opened the match with a great pass for Gnabry. Süle made some crucial interceptions and tackles and was defensively on top of his game. He continues his spell of good matches, and hopefully, we will see him in Bayern’s jersey in the coming seasons.
Fußballgott: Leroy Sane
Leroy Sane has had a slow start to the match but gradually got better. As the second half began, he became very productive and had some brilliant moves. Sane also managed to pull off some impressive passes that created some dangerous counter-attacks for the Bavarians. He was also very active when Bayern pressed, and that’s how he got his goal tonight. He also scored another goal near the end of the match, but I’m still not sure whether it was justified to cancel his goal due to a handball. Nevertheless, a great match from Leroy, as he had 90% accurate passes as well as three key passes.
Corentin Tolisso also had a great match, and with his recent performances (and with Marcel Sabitzer’s performances), I wouldn’t be surprised if Brazzo offered him a new deal.
Der Bomber: Thomas Müller
Bayern Munich is going to have a hard time replacing the Raumdeuter. Under Hansi Flick and Julian Nagelsman, Muller almost pulls a goal or an assist per match. Thomas looks to get better each year, and this year is no different. He scored a weird goal today, but it was in his style. He almost got an assist in the first half, but unfortunately, Tolisso was offside. He also had two great chances in the second half — one a header and the second, a shot from about 5 meters from the goal, but Schwolow managed to save that one too.
Meister of the Match: Joshua Kimmich
A brilliant performance from Bayern’s versatile midfielder! You don’t see perfect performances very often, but what Joshua Kimmich produced tonight was, without a doubt — perfect! He was vital to tonight’s victory. Whenever Bayern moved forward, Kimmich was there to start the attack. And whenever Hertha attacked, he closely followed the attack and was involved in the defending. Just a perfect evening from Kimmich. He managed to get two assists, and he was also able to provide seven key passes. He had the most passes of all players on the pitch and managed to get 91% of them correct. Keep it up, Josh!
Kit Leak: Bayern Munich’s new home kit for 2022/23
This brings back some old memories.
There are still four more months to go until the end of the 2021/22 season, but that hasn’t stopped future kits from being leaked online. In this case, Bayern Munich’s home kit for the 2022/23 season has been leaked.
Note that this leak is not entirely accurate, as per Footy Headlines. However, they have confirmed a 95% accuracy, which implies that the kit that we see here will probably change very little, if at all, come next season:
Weekend Warm-up: Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski has a huge decision to make; Throwing it back to Stroke 9; What’s going on with Tanguy Nianzou; Bundesliga predictions; and MORE!
Watching the FC Bayern — Behind the Legend documentary has taught me a few things:
1 — It is so easy to see why so many Bayern Munich players would run through a wall for Hansi Flick.
2 — Thomas Müller is just as much a character as we all think he is.
3 — There was absolutely awkwardness between Flick and sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidzic.
4 — Robert Lewandowski’s sometimes steely exterior is like the shell of an M&M. It’s sort of hard, but that is not really similar to what is underneath.
What burst through the screen was not only that Lewandowski is insanely driven (partly from pain, partly from sheer will, partly from an unrelenting desire to be the best), but that he is not the high maintenance figure that can sometimes come across with his on-pitch persona.
- FC Köln v FC Bayern München – Bundesliga
Robert Lewandowski will have to make some decisions on his future in the coming weeks. Photo by Alexander Scheuber/Getty Images
There have been times where Lewandowski has come across poorly through stories in the media or if fans read too much into his gestures on the pitch, but Lewandowski’s personality within the documentary was humble, dedicated, and pretty much low key.
How much longer he wants to continue bringing his own special brand of desire to Bavaria could soon be decided.
Lewandowski’s contract ends in 2023 and at 33-years-old, both he and the club have a difficult decision to make. Does Lewandowski want to take this last opportunity to try and ply his trade at a different club to give himself that one last major challenge (and a huge pay day) for his career? Or does Lewandowski want to take a lesser contract (both in years and in pay) to stay with Bayern Munich where he still a fantastic opportunity to chase multiple trophies every season and some legendary records
Manchester United are still hesitant over signing a midfielder during the transfer window. The one name consistently linked is Denis Zakaria.
German outlet Sport1 reported last week United have been in touch with the Swiss midfielder’s representatives, with the midfielder for sale for just £6 million amid an expiring contract.
United may wish to step up interest, amid fresh reports from Germany that Bayern Munich are showing interest.
Fussball Transfers report Borussia Moenchengladbach’s preference is to sell Zakaria to United, because they would rather the midfielder does not join another German club, and the Red Devils are more likely to pay a fee.
Bayern’s approach is likely to be made on a free transfer in the summer, although ‘Gladbach may have to consider a bid from them if one is not forthcoming from United.
Bayern’s interest should tell United a lot
A report from The Athletic this week claimed United’s scouts were not convinced Zakaria is the right player, and have an eye on Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham in the summer.
These seem like ‘pie in the sky’ targets, each of who would cost £100 million, and may not even be available.
Zakaria’s availablity is very real, and he is available now, at just £6 million.
Bayern’s interest in Zakaria should tell United all there is to know about the midfielder’s quality. If the reigning Bundesliga champions want him, then he is more than good enough for United’s midfield.
Serge Gnabry is expected to extend his contract with Bayern Munich
Serge Gnabry is expected to join the list of Bayern stars who have extended their contracts this season.
Bayern Munich are expected to extend another star this season, and next on the list is Serge Gnabry. Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, and Kingsley Coman have all extended their contracts for long-term deals to stay in Munich and Serge Gnabry wants to join these names. With Bayern’s winger core almost all locked up to long-term deals, Gnabry’s signature would solidify Bayern’s wingers for at least a few years.
Bayern have reportedly offered €15 million per year, but the German winger wants a bit more. Considering Coman was given more, it is no surprise that Gnabry would want a higher salary. Gnabry is probably a better talent than Coman so it is surprising that Coman would have been offered a higher rate.
Gnabry has scored 58 goals and provided 37 assists in 152 appearances for Bayern Munich meanwhile Coman has scored 46 goals and provided 52 assists in 217 appearances. Coman’s contribution rate (0.45) compared to Gnabry’s is far weaker (0.63) so if Bayern can extend Gnabry for a rate similar to Coman’s it would be a great deal for Bayern. Hopefully, we see an announcement in the coming weeks.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski takes Leo Messi diss in stride; Karim Benzema threatens Real Madrid exit if Erling Haaland signs; Florian Wirtz is a bad dude; FC Barcelona and Ousmane Dembele to part ways?; and MORE!
Lewandowski takes Messi diss in stride (Goal)
Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski asked about Lionel Messi’s petty, weak, and spineless voting strategy regarding FIFA’s award for Best Men’s Player.
Messi, of course, inexplicably omitted Lewandowski from his ballot after offering some hollow words when Lewandowski was (wrongly) shutout from the Ballon d’Or in favor of Messi:
Surely, Lewandowski said all the right things publicly, but there is little doubt he probably feels like Messi’s actions were a farce.
Bayern Munich closely monitoring Adam Hlozek, but worried he won’t accept back-up role
Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund have their eyes on a young striker.
Bayern Munich is reportedly very interested in Sparta Prague striker Adam Hlozek. The Bavarians, however, are not alone.
Borussia Dortmund is also extremely interested in Hlozek and could offer the 19-year-old a more direct path to playing time. With BVB, Hlozek would be one of the players potentially vying to replace Erling Haaland. At Bayern Munich, the Czech Republic international would be a back-up to Robert Lewandowski (should the Polish Hitman not move on in the summer) according to Bild:
BILD found out: Both table leaders Munich and pursuers Dortmund are keen on striker Adam Hlozek (19) from Sparta Prague. The Czech high-flyer has a contract until 2024 and is already being celebrated as a new child prodigy in his homeland.
Should Haaland make the flutter at BVB in the summer, Hlozek is considered a hot replacement candidate. What Borussia could play into the cards: Dortmund’s former midfield star Tomas Rosicky (41) has been sports director at Sparta since 2018. Hlozek, who wants to take the next step in the summer, can leave Sparta for the fee of around €25m. BILD knows: Bayern manager Hasan Salihamidzic (45) has already dealt intensively with the national player (12 appearances/1 goal).
What makes Hlozek so valuable: Last season he scored 15 goals and eight assists in 19 first division games. This made him the top scorer. And this season he is apparently continuing his series seamlessly.
The Bavarians are not quite sure that Hlozek would want to accept a role as a back-up at this stage of his career, though. In addition, Hlozek is expected to cost €25 million, which would be a major investment for Bayern Munich at a time where the club is not exactly apt to spent on a position that they do not exactly need at this point.
Bayern Munich signs Hyunju Lee on loan from South Korea
The young Korean will join the FC Bayern’s second team on loan from Korean top-division side FC Pohang Steelers.
Bayern Munich have signed Hyunju Lee on a one-year loan from the Korean top-division side FC Pohang Steelers. The 18-year old Korean will join Bayern’s second team and will live on the FC Bayern Campus.
Jochen Sauer, head of the FC Bayern Campus had this to say about the signing of the young Korean talent, “After Oliver Batista-Meier left the club, we had now had a roster spot available in the amateur team. Hyunju had a convincing trial and we made the decision to sign him. We are excited that he can immediately get going with the amateurs and hope for a mutually-successful Rückrunde.”
On his move to FC Bayern, Hyunju Lee stated, “I am very thankful that I have signed my first contract with FC Bayern Munich. I would like to acclimate quickly, so that I can show my best performance on the field.”
Lee mentions signing his first contract with FC Bayern, showing his intent to stay at Bayern after his loan expires. As part of the agreement, Bayern will have an option to buy at the end of the loan period.
Daily Schmankerl: Chelsea chasing Bayern Munich alumnus Ivan Perisic?; Real Madrid out of the running for Erling Haaland?; Robin Gosens to Newcastle United?; Karim Adeyemi to Borussia Dortmund heating up; and MORE!
The weekend went by way too fast.
Chelsea chasing Perisic? (Sport1)
Former Bayern Munich winger Ivan Perisic has proven himself both in Bavaria and with Inter Milan over the past three seasons. Now, it looks like Thomas Tuchel would like to bring Perisic to Chelsea FC:
After leaving Bayern Munich in 2020, Ivan Perisic enjoyed a successful year and a half at Inter Milan. Last season he won the championship with the Italians – and this year Inter again greets from the top of the table.
Perisic made a significant contribution to this rise and is an undisputed regular player, first under Antonio Conte and now under Simone Inzaghi. So, it’s no wonder that the Champions League winner is personally trying to get Perisic. According to information from the Daily Mirror in England, Chelsea, coach Thomas Tuchel’s club, has put out feelers for the Croatian.
It is said that the Blues could use a winger after Ben Chilwell’s injury – someone who can play on both sides. That would apply to Perisic. The 32-year-old’s contract expires next summer. So it may be that Inter wants to sell him in winter to make money. Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are also interested, according to the Mirror. However, Chelsea are said to be favourites.
With Arsenal FC and Tottenham Hotspur also in the mix, it will be interesting to see if any of the Premier League clubs can land the Croatian.
Brazzo wanted to keep Ivan Perisic and Philippe Coutinho at Bayern Munich
Gosens to NUFC? (Sport 1)
Germany international Robin Gosens could be one of Newcastle United’s first big purchases. The Atalanta star appears to be on Newcastle’s radar for a winter move, though it is hard to say just how likely that would be:
As reported by Sky Italia , Robin Gosens has agreed on a change with Newcastle United.
The 27-year-old German national player has agreed a contract with the Scheich-Klub until 2025 and is said to earn 3.5 million euros net per year, which means a tripling of his previous salary at Atalanta Bergamo.
However, Gosens is still under contract with Atalanta until 2023, so both clubs would have to agree on a fee. There is also a question mark over the full-back’s health. Gosens has been out since September with a muscle injury.
However, if everything goes well in the next investigation, Newcastle wants to submit an official offer in January.
Three observations from Bayern Munich’s stylish victory over FC Köln
Julian Nagelsmann did not need a proper left-back to ensure his side’s victory over Köln.
Bayern Munich did not play poorly last week against Borussia Mönchengladbach but let that game slip away. Today, they left almost nothing to chance against Köln in a 0-4 victory. Here are the observations:
Too short, too long, too wide, too narrow … too toothless
Having watched a fair number of Köln games this season, I can tell you that their attack has been decent. However, Mark Uth getting caught offside has been a regular phenomenon this season and it happened again today. Florian Kainz, normally so accurate with his crossing, only really got going late on. Anthony Modeste, good with his head, squandered the few chances he got. Salih Ozcan was left far too alone at times.
I don’t know if a pairing of Sebastian Andersson and Mark Uth up front would have been more sensible rather than the more static Modeste – Uth pairing; regardless, Köln played far below their levels today and that is partially down to their error-strewn and nervy game.
Julian Nagelsmann’s surprising choice and the payoffs
Nagelsmann elected to retain Marcel Sabitzer at left-back which I thought was a gamble and a surprise. The more natural choice might have been the actual left-back, Omar Richards. Sabitzer had a better outing than last time, seemed more tenacious and willing to do the task and at the bare minimum, did what he had to do. While other options were available for right-back as Tanguy Nianzou was back in the squad, Nagelsmann opted to keep Joshua Kimmich there. This meant the defensive midfield pairing was Marc Roca-Corentin Tolisso; the pairing proved really effective today and the game flowed because of the effectiveness of the double pivot.
Nagelsmann also opted to keep Benjamin Pavard as a center-back, his natural position and the role he seems best suited to judging by another good performance.
Niklas Süle, Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Müller things
Süle has not yet inked pen to paper but Bayern should do absolutely everything in their power to keep him. Today was another quietly solid display and Süle has shown again and again that regardless of the opponent in front of him, he will produce.
On that note, Süle’s older colleagues, Lewandowski and Müller have contracts which are winding down. While Bayern rarely extends contracts of players the wrong side of 30 more than a year, they should make exceptions in both these players’ cases. Consistency from two players and an almost telepathic connection between the same two are hard to find; contrary to many who believe differently, I do not think the duo will slow down too much come 2025 and should get longer extensions.
Daily Schmankerl: Serge Gnabry set to get paid at Bayern Munich; Manchester United’s Donny van de Beek to Borussia Dortmund?; Bayern discouraged from Erling Haaland move; and MORE!
Gnabry to join Bayern’s top paid players (Sport Bild via @iMiaSanMia)
One thing that has become abundantly clear at Bayern Munich this week is that the club is likely going to have push Serge Gnabry’s salary into a similar stratosphere as fellow wingers Leroy Sane and Kingsley Coman.
On their Bayern Insider podcast, Sport Bild’s Christian Falk and Tobi Altschäffl detailed that there might not have been a bigger fan of the deals signed by Sane and Coman than Gnabry. With similar statistics in recent seasons as the two aforementioned players — and arguably just as impactful — Gnabry is going to demand a salary of €15 million per season, which would put him within striking distance of both Coman and Sane:
It was going to be inevitable that Gnabry would seek a little more money after seeing what his peers are pulling in. For Bayern Munich, there is not much the club can do. This was pretty much always going to happen.
There were some completely absurd thoughts that Gnabry would consider re-joining Arsenal FC (LOL), but it seems that is a part of Gnabry’s history he probably does not want to re-live.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich ahead of Real Madrid for Nico Schlotterbeck; Joshua Kimmich wins fan vote; Borussia Dortmund pursuing Chelsea’s Andreas Christensen; Liverpool sees light on Raphinha; and MORE!
Can Bayern Munich get back on track this weekend?
Madrid behind Bayern in race for Schlotterbeck (The Hard Tackle)
Per a report out of Spain, Bayern Munich is the leader in the clubhouse to land SC Freiburg star Nico Schlotterbeck. Real Madrid is said to be next in line, though Schlotterbeck has made it clear he sees his future in the Bundesliga:
Bayern Munich and Real Madrid are reportedly vying for SC Freiburg defender Nico Schlotterbeck, with the Bundesliga champions leading the race to sign him.
According to a report by Spanish outlet Fichajes, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid are embroiled in a transfer tussle to sign Nico Schlotterbeck in the summer transfer window. The Bundesliga champions are the front-runners to land the 22-year-old SC Freiburg defender.
I am starting to think that if Niklas Süle and Bayern Munich determine that he will be moving on, the Bavarians will not wait long to make SC Freiburg an offer on Schlotterbeck.
At this point, Antonio Rüdiger seems like a lock to re-up with Chelsea FC and Matthias Ginter’s primary attribute is the fact he would be a free transfer. Otherwise, the Gladbach man does not seem to have a ton of support at Bayern Munich — outside of Julian Nagelsmann.
Interestingly, a standoff on Ginter could be Nagelsmann first showdown with sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidizic.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich still eyeing Adam Hlozek?; Falk Flexing on Antonio Rüdiger, Nico Schlotterbeck, and Denis Zakaria; Jamie Lawrence to leave Bayern?; and MORE!
Bayern eyeing Hlozek? (Sport Bild via @iMiaSanMia)
We had already heard that Bayern Munich had interest in Sparta Prague star Adam Hlozek, but that could ramp up if the club is able to reach a deal with Robert Lewandowski on a contract extension.
At just 19-years-old, Hlozek is like not ready to start at a club like Bundesliga, but he could ne a prime candidate for an apprenticeship under the Polish Hitman:
Who is he shooshing in this picture? Me? BFW? Patrick Schick?
€1.8m in the black: Bayern Munich the only 2020/21 European league champ to turn a profit
While other European rivals at the top of their leagues suffered devastating losses, Bayern Munich managed to make a profit during the Coronavirus pandemic in 2020/21
According to “The European Champions Report 2022” by KPMG”, Bayern Munich was almost alone among 2020/21 major European league champions to make a profit, amid steep losses across Europe on account of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic (summary here). Bayern managed to net €1.8m against all odds.
The KPMG found the following: “The only exception are German champions FC Bayern München, who managed to achieve a consecutive 29th profitable year. The Bavarian club, who since three decades achieve balance between competitiveness on the pitch and financial sustainability, represent one of the best management models in European sports history.”
Bayern also managed to keep their staff costs-to-operating revenue ratio at 58%, the lowest among the eight clubs assessed in the report.
The net losses suffered elsewhere are staggering: Inter Milan and Atletico Madrid had the highest annual losses: €245.6 and €111.7 respectively. But even these numbers pale in comparison to the “historical record net loss … suffered by FC Barcelona in the same season.” Barca lost an incredible €481.3m.
Bayern’s financial stability was reflected in its retention of the Bundesliga championship: Bayern was the only champion in 2019/20 to do so again in 2020/21, winning its ninth Bundesliga trophy in a row.
The authors speculate that, “Bayern’s successful management might also explain why the club did not feel the need to participate in last year’s European Super League initiative.”
Bayern has been adamant about sustaining its business model with conservative yet significant investments in players and an emphasis on corporate revenue, which has witnessed growth over the pandemic. These policies have set Bayern apart from its domestic rivals, while they have kept the club in contention with its biggest European rivals.
Daily Schmankerl: Antony had a shot with Bayern Munich, but Kingsley Coman’s deal probably kills that; Borussia Dortmund bags Italian gem; Eden Hazard getting more heat over weight issues; and MORE!
Bayern has “loose” contact with Antony in the fall (Sport1)
Before it seemed like a lock that Bayern Munich would extend the contract of Kingsley Coman, the Bavarians had “loose contact” with Ajax winger Antony about a move to the club:
According to SPORT1 information, there had been loose contact with the Amsterdam right winger in autumn. Since then, there have been no concrete discussions because it became clear that Coman can again imagine a longer-term future in Munich.
Now that Coman seems certain to sign a new deal, the stories of Bayern Munich being interested in Antony, FC Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele, or Leeds United ace Raphinha should die down
What Kingsley Coman’s contract extension means for Bayern Munich’s squad planning, future formation
The recent news that Bayern Munich and Kingsley Coman are closing in on a contract extension should have a trickle down effect on the club’s squad planning and how Julian Nagelsmann aligns his squad.
Let’s take a brief look at how Coman’s (alleged) new deal will affect those areas:
With Coman, Sane, and Musiala all locked up — and Gnabry reportedly set to ink his own deal shortly — it would seem that wing position will be settled for years to come (if there is actually a wing position needed — more on that in the next section).
SS Lazio v Bayern Muenchen – UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg One
Bayern Munich has massive talent on the wings. Photo by Christina Pahnke – sampics/Corbis via Getty Images
So, what does that mean for the rumored pursuits of players like Leeds United star Raphinha, Juventus winger Federico Chiesa, or even former Bayern Munich academy product Wooyeong Jeong?
Those moves (dreams?) probably are not happening — there is a A LOT of money tied up in the position at Bayern Munich.
As for the youngsters in the academy, well, this signing could be a signal for many of them to start looking elsewhere:
18-year-old Amindo Sieb was recently denied a chance to move to Hannover 96 in favor of helping Bayern Munich II get back into 3. Liga. If successful, the club wants him to remain with the team to help the squad stay “up.” For an ambitious youngster — who no doubt has a crafty agent — the lip service about the club liking him likely will not hold much weight. Should other clubs start identifying Sieb as a potential first team player and have a first team spot to offer, the youngster will have to think hard about a transfer. Sieb’s current deal expires in 2023.
Nemanja Motika has exploded this season, but at 18 years old, he is nearing the point where he will be ready for first team football (if he is not already). That pathway at his position seems blocked to say the least and for a talent like Motika, waiting around is not always an easy task.
At 16 years old, Arijon Ibrahimovic is not in as pressing a situation as his slightly older teammates, but the youngster is considered a campus gem and on the accelerated track to the first team. Ibrahimovic has the ability to move across a few positions, but he could also be looking at the logjam ahead of him as well.
It seems like Sieb is being counted to stay with Bayern Munich II, while Motika could end up inking a new deal and then leaving on a loan to pursue first-team.
Daily Schmankerl: Rumored Bayern Munich target Nico Schlotterbeck rejects Newcastle United; FC Barcelona chasing Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes; Robert Lewandowski honored; and MORE!
Schlotterbeck slated to leave Freiburg in summer (@Plettigoal)
According to Sky journalist Florian Plettenberg, rumored Bayern Munich target Nico Schlotterbeck has drawn interest from Newcastle United, but the Germany international seems to be balking at the move.
Per Plettenberg, the price tag on Schlotterbeck is rising as any club approaching SC Freiburg will have to pay €20 million to €30 million for the highest rated center-back in Europe:
As noted by Plettenberg, Bayern Munich’s interest could spike or go away altogether depending on what happens with Niklas Süle.
Bayern Munich rejects Armindo Sieb loan offer; bosses think he can break through
Hannover 96 wanted the youngster, but Bayern Munich would not let him go.
By CSmith1919@TheBarrelBlog Jan 10, 2022, 2:00pm CET 1 Comment
According to Sky journalist Florian Plettenberg, Bayern Munich attacker Amindo Sieb had an offer to take a loan to Hannover 96, but the move was rejected by the Bavarians.
Why would the club not give the youngster a chance to play first team football on a consistent basis? Well, campus director Jochen Sauer believes the player will make his mark at Bayern Munich soon enough:
They don’t want to lose him on campus! According to information from Sky, Armindo Sieb could have been loaned to second division Hannover 96 in this winter transfer window. Other inquiries were also in the room. The 18-year-old top talent would have been ready for this step, but Jochen Sauer had something against it.
The campus director vehemently advocated the offensive all-rounder remaining and convinced him. The reason: Sauer trusts the eight-time German U19 international to make a breakthrough in Munich. Julian Nagelsmann also believes in the qualities of Sieb, who moved from Hoffenheim to Munich free of charge in the summer of 2020.
Primarily, it is believed that the bosses on campus are aiming for Bayern Munich II to get back in the third division — where Sieb would be desperately needed.
As far as his long-term prospects on the first team go, things are a little less clear. Should Bayern Munich II fail to make the third division, it is possible Sieb could be loaned out during the summer.
Realistically, not all of the prized youngsters are going to make it with Bayern Munich no matter how highly rated they are. Just this weekend we heard that Gabriel Vidovic and Paul Wanner were considered future first team players. Considering the club’s recent track record, it is hard to imagine that two or even three of the current crop of youth players will eventually break through with the club.
Sure, it is possible, but as players like Niklas Dorsch, Angelo Stiller, Milos Pantovic, and a few others have found out — they surely had the talent and drive to make it…just not into the deep and talented roster of Bayern Munich.
Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich will need to pay €25 to €30 million for FC Barcelona’s Sergino Dest; Bayern linked to Ousmane Dembele…again; Arsenal, AC Milan, Barca linked to Renato Sanches; and MORE!
Barca put price tag on Dest (Barca Universal)
If Bayern Munich really wants Sergino Dest this summer, it looks like it will have to pay €25 to €30 million:
Bayern Munich are still interested in signing Sergino Dest despite missing out on the former Ajax youngster back in 2020, reports Italian journalist and transfer market specialist Rudy Galetti.
Galetti says the 21-year-old is not in Xavi’s plans and that the club is willing to cash on him in order to register Ferran Torres. For that, though, Barcelona are requesting a fee in the region of around €25-30 million.
Apart from Bayern Munich, Chelsea seem to have registered an interest, although the Blues are only seeing him as a second option. Another team in line is La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid who are actively hunting a right-back following Kieran Trippier’s move to Newcastle United.
Bayern Munich interested in Hoffenheim’s Tom Bischof again?
Could Bayern Munich be looking at 16-year-old prospect Tom Bischof once more?
Last summer, we started to see rumors linking Bayern Munich to Hoffenheim youth midfielder Tom Bischof, who is considered one of the top, young prospects in all of Germany.
On an appearance with Christian Falk on Bild Live, former Bayern Munich technical director indicated that the Bavarians are still looking closely at the 16-year-old phenom.
“His contract at Hoffenheim is running out. Some German clubs are interested. And what we also know is that Julian Nagelsmann has a positive opinion about Tom,” said Reschke (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia). “The FC Bayern squad is never that big. As a talented young player, you can always get game time.”
That last part of the quote could be considered debatable, but there does seem to be enough of a pattern of interest to think that Bayern Munich could take a look at Bischof.
This is what kicker had to say about Bischoff in the summer:
Big clubs like Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund or RB Leipzig are already vying for Tom Bischof. But Hoffenheim is also fighting for its own generation and shows the talent the chances and possibilities to go into the professional field at TSG.
Bavaria’s new head coach Julian Nagelsmann is said to have intervened personally to make Tom Bischof a move from Hoffenheim to Munich. Where Bischof would also meet his ex-coach Danny Galm, who by the way, like Bischof, once emerged from the amateur club TSV Amorbach.
With all of those connections, it seems like Bayern Munich would be a natural choice for the youngster. Hoffenheim, however, would love to be able to convince Bischof to be a part of their next generations of stars
TSG is also fighting for its own product, which is already bound to Hoffenheim with a contract until 2022. Per kicker information, the U-17 player was now involved in the preparation of the Hoffenheim U-19 and should be able to get a taste of the professional training under head coach Sebastian Hoeneß at the beginning of July.
With Corentin Tolisso likely leaving, Marc Roca’s status uncertain, Marcel Sabitzer unable to get comfortable, and prized prospect Torben Rhein rumored to have fallen a bit out of favor, Bayern Munich could absolutely be in line to make a run at Bischof if the club sees him as a part of the future in the central midfield.
Bayern Munich wanted to send Michael Cuisance to Russia
Would CSKA Moscow have ponied up €10 million?
Michael Cuisance left Bayern Munich for Venezia FC earlier in the week, but the Serie A side did not offer up the best financial package for the Frenchman.
Not by a long shot.
Sport Bild’s Christian Falk detailed the story on his Bayern Insider podcast (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia). Falk indicated that CSKA Moscow actually offered Bayern Munich €10 million for Cuisance, but the Frenchman opted to transfer to Italy instead.
That figure, of course, is more than double than the €4.5 million Bayern Munich received from Venezia FC for the volatile Frenchman. This would seem to contradict some of the prior statements from CSKA Moscow chief scout Andrei Movsesian:
“We have a shortlist and there are negotiations. Cuisance? We do not comment on rumors. I read that CSKA allegedly offered 10 million for him,” said Movsesian to Match TV. “But if you ask me, that’s too much for a player who hasn’t played 60 minutes this season.”
In the transfer game, however, there is often not much difference from the truth and falsehoods. While Movsesian might have publicly trued to lower the bidding expectations, CSKA Moscow could have actually had €10 million as its “not to exceed” figure.
Whatever the case, Cuisance is gone and whether or not CSKA Moscow would have actually gone as high as €10 million is something we will never know. Cuisance wanted to go to Italy and off to “The Boot” he went.
Bayern Munich, PSG, Manchester City still among contenders for Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland
Despite what we might hear from Säbener Straße, rumors persist about Bayern Munich’s interested in Erling Haaland.
Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland has been most recently linked to FC Barcelona and Real Madrid as both La Liga clubs appear to be dead-set on signing the Norwegian.
Bayern Munich’s name has not been bandied about all that often of late as the club’s front office executives have tried to quiet the noise.
Per David Ornstein of The Athletic, though, the Bavarians, Manchester City, and Paris Saint-Germain are all still very much alive in the race for Haaland. In responding to a reader’s question, Ornstein gave this reply:
My understanding is that City’s first-choice target is Erling Haaland and while the competition for his signature is sure to be fierce, the reigning Premier League champions will push hard to secure the prolific Borussia Dortmund forward.
City are planning to hold meetings with Haaland’s representatives over the weeks and months ahead, yet whether or not the 21-year-old Norwegian opts for a move to the Etihad Stadium is a different matter.
There is a feeling that Real Madrid pose the biggest threat to City, but if the Spaniards manage to acquire Kylian Mbappe, it could dissuade Haaland from following suit. Multiple sources dismiss Barcelona’s ability to mount a serious challenge and although Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain are potential destinations, City may be confident of providing a more enticing proposition. Manchester United are thought to retain an interest in Haaland but there are doubts about whether the attraction is mutual.
If City do not land Haaland they will have other options; among them is believed to be Alexander Isak and they are also monitoring the progress of Dusan Vlahovic.
It is not impossible the pursuit of Harry Kane is revived if he becomes available for what City deem a fair price, which is looking improbable and another factor would be Kane’s age, as he turns 29 in July.
Bayern Munich’s focus is reportedly on an extension with Robert Lewandowski, but rumors still persist that the Polish Hitman could seek to leave Bavaria. Should Lewandowski actually leave (as doubtful as that might be), Haaland would surely be Bayern Munich’s first-choice to man the striker position.
Jersey Gate: Bayern Munich’s Jamal Musiala wore Corentin Tolisso’s name in the second half
A lot of things went wrong on the field for Bayern Munich against Borussia Monchengladbach on Friday, but something weird went wrong in the locker room too. At halftime, Jamal Musiala swapped out his shirt. Now this isn’t weird by itself — especially on a snowy night in Munich — but at a closer look, there was a different name printed on his jersey: Tolisso.
How can this happen? Most-likely as they were pressing names and numbers onto shirts, the 24 of Tolisso must have accidentally gotten mixed up to make 42 instead. The jerseys probably get divvied up and handed out by number. The equipment managers likely just put the 42-shirts at Musiala’s locker and he didn’t even think to look at the name.
Because of the team’s performance and resulting loss, the match itself won’t be very memorable and the mis-named jersey will likely be soon forgotten. However, can you imagine if Musiala would have scored a late-winner or a hat-trick? That jersey would have gone straight to the Bayern museum or been sold for a pretty penny.
What do you think Musiala should do with this unique jersey? Put your idea in the comments!
Bayern Munich, Chelsea, and Barcelona holding talks with Marseille midfielder Boubacar Kamara
With the pandemic financial crunch hitting clubs across Europe, everyone is on the lookout for quality free transfers. According to a report from FussballTransfers, Bayern Munich are one of three teams who have opened talks with Marseille midfielder Boubacar Kamara, who is set to become a free agent this summer. The Frenchman’s camp is also reportedly negotiating with Chelsea and FC Barcelona.
Kamara, who mainly plays in defensive midfield, would be an option to fill the gap left by the departures of Corentin Tolisso and Michael Cuisance. Much like Javi Martinez, he also has the ability to play center-back, which could come into play if Bayern fail to extend Niklas Sule onto a new contract.
However, if the reported interest from Chelsea and Barcelona is real, then it feels unlikely that Bayern will actually end up landing the 22-year-old. Free transfers are only good business as long as you don’t end up overpaying on the salary — something that Juventus painfully learned with the transfers of Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot. If the player’s salary demands grow too high, expect Bayern to pull out of any potential transfer. In that case, the club might look elsewhere, such as Borussia Monchengladbach’s Denis Zakaria, to fulfill their midfield needs.
Breaking: Alphonso Davies becomes 9th Bayern Munich player to test positive for Covid-19
The hits just keep on coming. Just minutes ago, it was announced that Bayern Munich defender Alphonso Davies has tested positive for Covid-19. Davies trained with his teammates today, which means the entire squad is at risk of potential infection.
Here is the official announcement from the club:
Davies becomes the 9th player to test positive at Bayern in the last week or so. The club have already requested that Friday’s Bundesliga return game against Gladbach be postponed. The DFL haven’t made a decision on that yet, but Davies is unlikely to be the last +ve case on this Bayern squad.
Per Bild, it could get worse though. If Davies has the Omicron variant, the health authorities could order Bayern’s entire squad into quarantine. This would not only affect the Gladbach game, but the Koln game right after.
Also, looking at this from the outside, it’s baffling how Davies was allowed to train with the team before the results of his Covid test were known. This is a massive oversight and it needs to be corrected immediately.
Update: Bayern Munich youngster Gabriel Vidovic sick, Leon Goretzka absence a “surprise”, Niklas Süle likely battling injury
By CSmith1919@TheBarrelBlog Updated Jan 5, 2022, 3:30pm CET
Update: 9:30AM EST
Leon Goretzka’s absence was deemed a “surprise” by Sky’s Florian Plettenberg, who also stated that Goretzka “seemed” to be ready to play on Friday. Plettenberg also said that Süle was tested for COVID-19:
Update: 6:45AM EST
Per Bild, Bayern Munich defender Niklas Süle’s absence is not related to COVID-19, but more likely is due to an injury. Süle missed the Wolfsburg game before the break with a back injury.
Regardless, a lingering back injury is a cause for concern for the big fella, who would seem set to play a major role — if healthy — should Bayern Munich actually square off with Gladbach on Friday.
Imagine you are a talented youngster like Bayern Munich’s Gabriel Vidovic.
You are a good prospect, but you just happen to be at one of the few clubs where the pathway to the first team is blocked by one mega-talent after another.
Now imagine that you are Vidovic — and through some crazy chain of events involving a pandemic and injuries — your pathway to a first team appearance just cleared up and you actually have a chance to prove your mettle as an 18-year-old…only you are hit with a nasty cold and probably cannot suit up for your golden opportunity.
Such is life on Säbener Straße these days.
With Vidovic potentially out of the picture, Bayern Munich does not have any other U-19 or U-23 players readily available. This seems like an oversight in player management as the squad returned to training on Monday.
With Bayern Munich’s players essentially off and traveling abroad for roughly two weeks, it seems like this was always going to be a possibility and the club could have called more youth players in as a precaution.
Regardless, the game on Friday against Borussia Mönchengladbach is now officially in doubt with Niklas Süle and Leon Goretzka missing the session. There was no official word released as to why those two players also missed the practice.
We know that Goretzka is battling an injury and Süle was also banged up before the team dispersed for the break, but have not received a status update on either player yet for today.
Breaking COVID-19 news: Bayern Munich’s Leroy Sane, Kathleen Krüger, Dayot Upamecano positive; Josip Stanisic clear
Bayern Munich’s Leroy Sane issue a statement via his Twitter account:
Update: 8:53AM EST
Bayern Munich has officially confirmed that both Leroy Sane and Dayot Upamecano have tested positive:
Leroy Sané and Dayot Upamecano have contracted the coronavirus. Both players are fine, they are in domestic isolation.
Update: 8:45AM EST
The hits keep coming. Per Bild, team manager Kathleen Krüger has joined the list of positive tests:
According to BILD information, team manager Kathleen Krüger (36) also tested positive on Monday.
According to Bild, the COVID-19 situation at Bayern Munich is getting worse.
Leroy Sane’s test was inconclusive yesterday, but now Sane has tested positive per the German outlet. In addition, Dayot Upamecano was not seen at practice, which has some wondering if the Frenchman has also tested positive. There has been no official word on his status as of yet. Team manager Kathleen Krüger’s condition is also in question as well due to her inconclusive test yesterday.
Report: Bayern Munich, Juventus, Real Madrid, PSG have “opened talks” with Chelsea’s Antonio Rüdiger
Could the Bavarians be ready to strike on the German defender?
In what seemed to pop out of thing air, Leeds United’s Brazilian winger Raphinha was linked with a potential move to Bayern Munich during the January transfer window for of a fee of around €50 million. Bayern’s front office had been adamant that there would more than likely not be any business done during the winter transfer window other than a few outgoing players, but Brazil based outlet TNT Sport Brasil had broken the story that a potential transfer was on the cards for either this winter or the summer.
Raphinha’s current contract with Leeds runs through June 2024, but The Athletic reported over the weekend that Leeds is working on a potential contract extension for their Brazilian winger. However, new information from Sky Sports Germany suggests that the topic of a potential transfer to Bayern is something that’s being seriously considered at the club in the event that Kingsley Coman doesn’t renew his contract and decides to leave. His current contract at Bayern runs through June 2023 and Bayern is making it their top priority during the winter transfer window to determine his future.
Per the new information from Sky, Bayern’s front office is open to going in for Raphinha if they can’t convince Coman to sign a contract extension, but even at that point, a transfer would still be a “long way” off. Much like Niklas Sule, Coman’s contract is under the proverbial microscope at Bayern, but for Coman’s case, there are important details that are likely being considered. He, along with his representatives, had made it pretty clear in the buildup to the last summer transfer window that he would be shopping around for a potential transfer to the Premier League in England. So much to the point that he temporarily hired Pini Zahavi to try to broker a move to a Premier League club, but he was fired after failing to do so before the transfer window closed.
On one hand, Coman has had a solid campaign under Julian Nagelsmann thus far, having scored five goals and provided two assists from a total of seventeen appearances across all competitions. Alongside Leroy Sane, Serge Gnabry, Jamal Musial, and Thomas Muller, Coman has put together a significant patch of form for most of the second half of the Hinrunde after recovering from a heart issue back in September. With how well he’s performed, there’s certainly signals for Bayern to do everything in their power to keep hold of him, but his previous track record can’t guarantee the front office that he wont try to look elsewhere again this summer. In that respect, closely monitoring Raphinha’s situation at Leeds is certainly something worth doing at this stage.
For Leeds so far this season, Raphinha has been a bright spot in what’s otherwise been a disappointing campaign for Marcelo Bielsa’s side. They currently sit in 16th placed in the table after a run of terrible injury and coronavirus luck. Their problems were typified by their recent, 4-1 loss to Arsenal at Elland Road when they had to start 15-year-old Archie Gray on the bench out of necessity due to so many players having been out injured or ill. Raphinha has found the back of the net eight times and has provided one assist from seventeen appearances this season, all of which coming in the Premier League. He’s had to carry a lot of the attacking weight for Leeds with the long-term absence of striker Patrick Bamford and Leeds will also be without captain Liam Cooper and midfield stalwart Kalvin Phillips for a while.
According to Sky, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Juventus, and Paris Saint-Germain have “opened talks” with Chelsea FC defender Antonio Rüdiger.
Manchester United is also listed in the report as a club that could get involved in the bidding fray as well. Sky says, however, that Rüdiger remains focused on staying with Chelsea:
Real Madrid, PSG, Bayern Munich and Juventus have opened talks with Antonio Rüdiger’s representatives over a pre-contract agreement this month. Rüdiger’s Chelsea contract is up in the summer. Chelsea want to extend Rüdiger’s contract. Staying at Chelsea has not been ruled out.
Chelsea’s last contract offer in the summer was not considered as it was worth half of what Chelsea’s top earners are on. Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick is a long term admirer of the defender and knows Rüdiger’s brother – and agent – very well.
Rüdiger remains 100 percent focused and committed to Chelsea and Thomas Tuchel continues to count on him. Rüdiger has started 20 Premier League games this season – the most of any Chelsea outfield player.
Bayern Munich’s interest in Rüdiger would seem to be contingent on the club’s ability to re-sign Niklas Süle, whose status is still in question.
Leon Goretzka thinks part of Bayern Munich’s success is derived from its camaraderie
Bayern Munich midfielder Leon Goretzka sat down with the club magazine, Säbener 51, for an extensive interview. One of the most intriguing parts of the interview was how Goretzka viewed the value of success and why the relationships within the squad were so important.
“We want to continue the most successful period that FC Bayern has ever had. We have already lost one title with the DFB Pokal, which annoys me a lot, but also motivates me,” said Goretzka. “To play for titles at this level, and with your friends and not just with football teammates. You can’t pay for that with any money in the world. I know that you can’t achieve something like that just by saying it, but I wanted to make it clear that I had a plan — and I have achieved my goal.”
The last part of Goretzka’s quote above was in reference to his previous statements about wanting to take on more responsibility. The Germany midfielder has certainly done that on — and off — the pitch.
Report: Michael Cuisance will bring Bayern Munich back €4 million from Venezia
They will not be singing songs of glory about Michael Cuisance in Bavaria any time soon.
Final details are starting to emerge in what looks to be a done deal between Bayern Munich and Venezia for midfielder Michael Cuisance.
While Cuisance was also linked to CSKA Moscow, the French midfielder is reportedly already in Italy, which means things could happen extremely quickly. Bild am Sonntag issued a report stating that Cuisance would not be at Monday’s training on Säbener Straße which @iMiaSanMia posted.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano then chimed in to confirm that Cuisance definitely would not be at training in Germany…because he is already in Italy:
Ousmane Dembele to Bayern Munich? New report suggests just that
According to a new report out of BILD, FC Barcelona is looking to Bayern and Juventus to unload their talented but oft-injured winger, Ousmane Dembélé
Based on a new report in Bild, Bayern Munich might just have themselves a new winger. As broken down in the tweet below from @iMiaSanMia, FC Barcelona has offered embattled winger Ousmane Dembélé to Bayern.
Given Barcelona’s absurdly broken finances and Dembélé’s outrageous wages, it is easy to believe the report of Hasan Salihamidžic and Bayern’s board of directors being far from accepting of this proposed move
Romelu Lukaku admits he only went to Chelsea because Bayern Munich wouldn’t go for him
In a hilariously frank interview with Sky Sports, Chelsea FC striker Romelu Lukaku has revealed that he never wanted to join the club in the first place. Nope, his actual target after leaving Inter was one of the “top” clubs in his view — either Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, or Bayern Munich. Lukaku only settled for moving to Chelsea because a move to one of those teams wasn’t available.
Don’t believe me? The whole thing is on VIDEO. I don’t have that on hand, but here’s a Fabrizio Romano tweet to confirm: