The rumors began swirling late yesterday as the Telegraph sandwiched a quick tidbit about Dante in the latest edition of the Juan Mata transfer saga.
"Moyes will also monitor Max Kruse, Mönchengladbach's Germany striker, with Bayern defender Dante also likely to be assessed because of uncertainty the Brazilian's future at the Allianz Arena." - Telegraph
That was enough to set off a firestorm of rampant speculation and rumor in some of the less reputable corners of the media before the 30-year-old Brazilian's appearance on Fox Sports Brazil earlier today. While being interviewed the afro'd one was point blank asked about the rumored Manchester United interest and whether or not he had signed with the Red Devils to which he said ""Not yet. I am still a Bayern player. I appreciate Manchester United's interest. At the end of the month it will be resolved."
As you can imagine, that kind of statement gets everyone's attention and was further clarified by his agent, Marcus Marin.
"He has two more years on his contract and we are now in the race to make a new contract, but at the moment we have not found a solution so we are still waiting for Bayern," ... "We are not in touch with any other clubs at the moment but in football you never know.
"No, I know that they follow him and we were in touch with Manchester [United] two years ago before [Dante] went to Bayern Munich, but at the moment I know only that they watch him at games, but we haven't spoken to the club at the moment.
We have not found a solution [with Bayern], so we are still in the race, but England is very interesting, Manchester United are a big club so you never know." - Goal.com
Which is quite a bit less sensational than "Dante is going to Manchester United! OMG!". Of course, you can understand the pre-text of pushing that story. The Bayern-Munich-are-signing-all-the-world-class-centerbacks narrative has been one tabloids across the European continent have been ramming down the throats of everyone willing to give them a click. One of Bayern Munich's centerbacks leaving makes it all that much the easier to sell, and all the easier to believe. So naturally the inkling that Dante is going to the red side of Manchester is going to be a big deal to the media; even given that Dante is cup tied and would be a mostly nonsensical signing this season for a side still competing in the Champions League (and looking like their only way back is to win the whole kit and caboodle).
On the other side of that coin though is the fact that Dante is clearly positioning himself for a pay raise. He, and his agent, know he's a hot commodity for top sides across Europe. He's 30 years old with a contract that expires at the age of 32. This window is his shot at getting that last lucrative contract to tide him over well into his middle-aged years and Dante is giving Bayern Munich every shot at giving him the best offer they can. They're only working with Bayern Munich now but they're also drumming up interest in the event that Bayern Munich say "no".
Given the raise Dante and his agent are probably looking for, Bayern Munich may be best served by selling the Brazilian international. With 10 days left in the January transfer window and the fact that any suitable replacement would most likely be cup tied, seriously question whether anything actually comes of this before then. However, come this summer, expect the drama to really start unfurling.
To see all of Dante's interview with Fox Sport Brazil, visit Youtube where Bavarian Football Works contributor igorthebrave has put up a subtitled version of his interview.(be sure to turn closed captioning on)
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