It was Karl-Heinz Rummenigge’s turn to speak at length to the press today at the Philadelphia Eagles’ Lincoln Financial Field (Abendzeitung). The biggest news of the afternoon was that Paris Saint-Germain are negotiating with Jerome Boateng’s agents:
At the moment there is no direct contact between the clubs, but there is contact with the agents — Jerome has two, after all.
PSG has shown interest in Boateng from almost the moment former Borussia Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel succeeded Unai Emery. The moment now may be favorable for Bayern, since Manchester United are also reportedly interested in signing Boateng.
Manchester United and #PSG both showing interest in #Bayern Munich's Jerome Boateng with the German champions looking for 50-60 million Euros. No firm bids for the 2014 World Cup winner yet according to Kicker. #mufc— Mark Lovell (@LovellLowdown) July 22, 2018
Once the club agrees to terms with the player, Rummenigge indicated that it will still be necessary to negotiate a transfer fee that satisfies both parties:
Now we have to wait and see whether at the end of the day we find a basis on which we can agree on a transfer. We have to find a transfer fee that would be acceptable for both. In principle, we have enough players at this position, even if Jerome leaves.
It thus comes down to money — and perhaps PSG’s legendary bankroll will do Bayern a favor this time.
Rummenigge’s confidence that Bayern’s roster can compensate for the loss of Boateng, however, may surprise some observers. Niko Kovac has repeatedly suggested that he would like to play a system with three center-backs or at least be able to switch to such a system during a game.
At present, Bayern have three natural center-backs on the roster: Boateng, Mats Hummels, and Niklas Süle. Javi Martinez, David Alaba, and Joshua Kimmich have all played as center-backs in recent history — Alaba pairing up with Chris Richards against PSG just last week. Lars Lukas Mai, who was called up to the first team briefly late last season, did not travel with the team to the USA and appears destined for further seasoning with Bayern II.
Bayern have been heavily linked to Benjamin Pavard, but the club has not yet made a move to acquire him from VfB Stuttgart immediately, and it would be very unlike Rummenigge to count that poullet before he’s hatched.