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Bayern set to win the James sweepstakes no matter what

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Should he stay or leave, Bayern is in the catbird seat.

FC Bayern Muenchen And Paulaner Photo Session Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images for Paulaner

When Bayern Munich acquired James Rodriguez from Real Madrid in July of 2017, it turned some heads and not all of them in a good way. After all, James, the once Colombian wunderkind, had been relegated to Real’s bench. Needless to say, some of the shine had come off of James’ star.

But the Bayern brass, savvy investors the lot of them, saw a fixer upper with a lot of potential. Much like a house with good bones that just needs a little TLC, they realized that this investment could pay dividends down the road.

After James turned in a fantastic performance last season with Bayern to go with a strong showing at the World Cup before it was unfortunately truncated by injury, demand for the 27-year old began to skyrocket as it once did when Real first acquired him AS Monaco in 2014. With Bayern having a two-year loan option, it seemed all but certain that Real were going to call him home at the end of that spell. If they decide they want him badly enough, a contract clause in the James deal will certainly prove costly.

Bayern has an exclusive option to buy James at the price of 42 million euros in its back pocket. Right now, the estimated transfer price on James would be around 80 million according to transfermarkt, whose estimates are often proven to be on the conservative side. All Bayern would have to do is exercise the option and then sell him back to Real should Los Blancos want him badly enough.

The coaching staff and the front office for Bayern have both made it abundantly clear that they each want James to remain in Munich where he has proven to be formidable in the midfield. James has enjoyed a career resurgence with Die Roten and one would have to think that at least a part of him wouldn’t want to give up a good thing. Should he desire a move back to Madrid, however, Bayern is due for a big windfall.