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Daily Schmankerl: News on James, Robben, and Pulisic; German protests; Luka Modrić claims Ballon d’Or; and MORE!

Arjen Robben’s future plans will be discussed intensely over the coming months...

Netherlands v Sweden - FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

FC Groningen shows interest in Robben (Fussball Transfers)

At least one club is throwing its hat into the mix to procure the services of Arjen Robben for 2019/2020: FC Groningen, the Dutchman’s home club.

According to the Dutch regional newspaper Dagblad Noorden, FC Groningen would welcome a return from Arjen Robben. “It would be the ultimate dream to end his active career at FC Groningen. And you can dream it?,” CEO Hans Nijland answers to the question of whether a seal comeback after his departure at Bayern would be realizable in the summer.

The report also states that Robben might consider (this appears to be pure speculation) PSV Eindhoven.

Juventus excited at prospect of James leaving Bayern (Calciomercato)

If James Rodriguez is truly paving a way out of Bavaria, Juventus would seemingly welcome the Colombian with open arms.

This is positive news for Juventus, who have been following James for months on the market. A potential move would also be very much facilitated by the presence of agent Jorge Mendes, who has a fantastic relationship with the Bianconeri, as he has already brought Joao Cancelo and especially Cristiano Ronaldo to the Allianz Stadium this summer.

Paulo Dybala could be included in possible negotiations for the Colombian international, despite the fact that he is considered not for sale by the Juventus management.

Chelsea reportedly makes low offer for Pulisic (Evening Standard)

Chelsea has allegedly made the first offer on Christian Pulisic, but it was below Borussia Dortmund’s supposed asking price of £70M.

Chelsea have made their first official approach to Borussia Dortmund to sign Christian Pulisic. Sources in Germany say Chelsea spoke with Dortmund on Friday about acquiring the 20-year-old winger. It is understood Chelsea made an offer for the USA star in an attempt to convince Dortmund to sell next month.

The German outfit want £70m for Pulisic, even though he has only 18 months left on his contract and is refusing to discuss an extension. Chelsea’s bid is believed to be below the asking price, while Dortmund say he will see out the season with them.

Robben reveals close call with Manchester United (Sports Mole)

Now that his tenure at Bayern Munich is drawing to a close, Robben is revealing a few stories on his career and just how it all developed. Prior to joining Chelsea, Robben almost signed with Manchester United...if only, they had offered him a deal during his meeting with the Red Devils. Sports Mole captured the interview by FourFourTwo from a couple of months back detailing how it all went down.

I had a very good conversation with [Ferguson] over dinner in Manchester and we spoke about football and life. I also went and had a good look around the training ground and everything was good, but after I went back to PSV nothing happened. There was no real contact and the deal didn’t happen. PSV were also negotiating with Chelsea at that time, so maybe they offered PSV more money? I don’t really know. I spoke to Chelsea and I liked their plans. We had one meeting and everything was done pretty quickly. Had Manchester United offered me a deal straight after I met them, I would have signed there, but it didn’t happen and I’ve got no regrets.

Luka Modrić won the Ballon d’Or (@francefootball)

German Third Division teams stage protest (@archiert1)

In an effort to show their anger over the DFB’s decision to expand relegation to four teams, every team in Germany’s third division didn’t play for one minute to start the game.

Looking to catch-up on the Bundesliga action from the weekend? I’ve got you covered (The Barrel)

For a capsule-style recap of the Bundesliga’s weekend fixtures, just click here.

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