News broke yesterday that Sandro Wagner had asked Hoffenheim to be released for a winter transfer, with Bild speculating that his intended destination was none other than Bayern Munich. Now Hoffenheim coach Julian Nagelsmann has confirmed the rumor: Sandro Wagner wants to join Bayern Munich this winter.
Nagelsmann stated, “That’s right. We have known it for longer than since yesterday.” As if savoring the fact of his own candidness, Nagelsmann added, “I’ve confirmed it. Now you have something very, very rare.”
The speculation about Wagner’s desire to return to his home, Munich, thus was justified. Wagner, who is under contract with Hoffenheim until 2020, was a member of Bayern’s youth academy from 1997 to 2006. He made his professional debut in the regional cup in 2007, and his family lives in the Munich suburb of Unterhaching.
The transfer will not come cheap for Bayern. A transfer fee of €10 million is one estimate, but Bayern will get a more than capable striker with a proven Bundesliga record to backup Lewandowski. It almost seems to good to be true.
For Wagner, the transition from starter to bench player also brings certain risks. Having nearly established himself as the first-choice traditional striker in the German national team - all but supplanting Mario Gomez - he may risk losing that position for lack of playing time. How the transfer plays out for all parties involved remains to be seen.