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Kovac: ‘No chance’ of Renato Sanches exit

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The Bayern manager recently shut down rumors of Renato Sanches’ departure, but is it really his call to make?

FC Bayern Muenchen - Training Session and Press Conference Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

In Bayern Munich manager Niko Kovac’s press conference (via Bild) ahead of the match with VFB Stuttgart, the Croatian insisted Renato Sanches would remain in the Bavarian capital amid rumors of a potential swap deal with Paris-St Germain. In the hopes of enticing the record champions to part ways with the Portuguese international, PSG sporting director Antero Henrique has offered want-away midfielder Adrien Rabiot to sweeten the deal.

The Parisian club have been pursuing a deal for the former Golden Boy since the Summer of 2018, with new rumors emerging late in the January window. Despite the impending arrival of Leandro Paredes from Zenit St. Petersburg, Thomas Tuchel’s side remains starved for midfielders, especially considering Rabiot’s exile to reserve training.

When asked about the rumored swap deal that would bring Rabiot to Munich, Kovac insisted that this was the first he had heard of the rumor and asserted that, “There is no chance of a trade.”

Bayern’s tactician went on to address PSG’s midfield crisis and the development of the young midfielder:

It’s true that PSG were & are interested. But I said clearly that Renato will not leave. He is doing very well right now & I don’t want to let him go. I know that Paris are in need of midfielders but that’s not our problem.

It is clear that Kovac has a personal affinity for the Portuguese midfield dynamo, viewing him as a reclamation project of sorts. In limited minutes thus far, Sanches has impressed, but a midfield log jam will make it difficult for the youngster to feature prominently. Nevertheless Kovac made his intentions to play the European champion clear.

Renato will play a lot of games this season, especially in April when there will be nine games to play in that month. We experienced that in the first half of the season when we had some injured players. And we now can’t afford to lose any players... we have to stay competitive.

Although Kovac made his wishes clear in backing Bayern’s starlet, transfer decisions are left to the Bavarian brass. According to a report from Paris United, the Parisian giants are negotiating with Bayern and the player’s representatives to get a deal over the line in the final days of the transfer window and Henrique is desperate to include Rabiot in the deal.

As the Bayern leadership mull over a potential move, factoring in the French international’s history of indiscretions and unwillingness to play as a holding midfielder would be wise. In a locker room full of egos, bringing in a potentially cancerous force could prove devastating.

Do you think Bayern should make the deal?