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David Alaba pondering a move to Spain

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According to Bild, Bayern’s left-back is seriously weighing his options—as the club drags its feet in extending his friend Franck Ribery.

David Alaba of Bayern Muenchen looks on during the Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Hertha BSC at Allianz Arena on February 24, 2018 in Munich, Germany.
David Alaba gazes into the unknowable future. February 24, 2018, Munich, Germany.
Photo by Sebastian Widmann/Bongarts/Getty Images

We all may have collectively shrugged off David Alaba’s recent statement to the Austrian newspaper Kurier

I am aware that one day I will have to make that decision. I still feel great here, but I can also imagine going a different way, taking the next step or seeking a new challenge.

But there apparently was more to that remark than first appeared.

According to a breaking story by Bild’s Philipp Kessler, Alaba really is pondering a move away from Bayern Munich, where he has played his entire professional career since transferring from Austria Vienna’s youth academy in 2008. He joined the first team in 2011—notably, the last product of Bayern’s youth academy to do so.

Under contract until 2021, Alaba is nonetheless weighing his options abroad, potentially in 2019 or even as soon as this summer. Real Madrid and FC Barcelona would appear to be the two most favored destinations.

The alleged reason for this newfound wanderlust is also surprising: Alaba is apparently disappointed by Bayern’s treatment of his best friend Franck Ribery, whose contract runs out at the end of the current season. Ribery wants to extend his contract another year, but Bayern have left Ribery hanging, insisting that they will not decide his and Arjen Robben’s contract situations until April.

Of course, all this may come to naught: Bild also claim to have information to the effect that the notion of seeing out his career at Bayern and one day becoming captain—following in the footsteps of Philipp Lahm and Manuel Neuer—also appeals to the Austrian.