Bayern Munich pursuing Alexander Sörloth, the next big Norwegian striker? (TZ)
After failing to make an impression at Crystal Palace, Alexander Sörloth has lit up the Turkish Süper Lig, scoring 25 goals for Trabzonspor and providing another 7 assists. Those numbers have generated interest across Europe. In addition to AC Milan and Real Madrid, Bayern Munich is also reportedly interested.
Sörloth was asked about the transfer rumors and admitted he is flattered to be linked with prominent clubs. After admitting he would be happy to play for Real Madrid, he said,
That is also true of Bayern. The fact that they compare me to Lewandowski is an honor for me. But first Trabzon has to be convinced. Because I am at a club that values and respects me, and which I value and respect very much in turn.
Bayern has not thus far signed a formal backup for Robert Lewandowski, relying instead on Serge Gnabry, who can play at striker, with youngsters Joshua Zirkzee and Fiete Arp also available.
Hansi Flick’s next right-hand man? Meet Danny Röhl (SPORT1)
SPORT1 profiled 30-year-old Danny Röhl, one of Hansi Flick’s assistant coaches. Röhl ended his playing career in 2010 after an ACL injury, becoming RB Leipzig’s U16 coach that year. Four years later, he moved up to the pros, specializing in analysis and working under a succession of prominent coaches.
He follows Ralph Hasenhüttl to England, joining Southampton in 2018, where he served as the Austrian’s assistant. Niko Kovac brought him to Bayern last year, with Hansi Flick’s blessing, and there he has stayed.
Röhl told SPORT1, “It means very much to me to be able to work for such a successful European top club and to support it with my abilities and previous experience.”
Röhl initially specialized in video analysis at Bayern, but quickly won the respect of the players. SPORT1 relates that players like Thiago and Robert Lewandowski consult him personally with questions concerning game match analysis and tactics.
The club apparently is deliberating about promoting Röhl already to Flick’s first assistant. Röhl’s current contract expires in 2021, but he is likely to receive an extension keeping him by Flick’s side until 2023.
”Ich bin einer der Assistenten von Hansi Flick und versuche ihn in seiner täglichen Arbeit bestmöglich zu unterstützen.”
Football Leaks’ Rui Pinto released from prison (Spiegel)
If you don’t know who Rui Pinto is, you should: he is the man behind the Football Leaks revelations that shook the soccer world over a year ago. After over a year in a Portuguese prison, half of it in solitary confinement, Pinto was surprisingly released into house arrest after apparently reaching an agreement with Portuguese prosecutors.
Pinto had offered to cooperate with authorities for some time, and at last high-ranking officials in Portugal’s department of justice have changed their positions. Spiegel speculates that two prominent cases have changed the authorities’ minds about Pinto: one is the investigation into the scandal surrounding the richest woman of Africa, Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of the former president of Angola. Dos Santos faces corruption charges and could lose must of her accumulated billions.
The other case Pinto may be collaborating with concerns an investigation into several Portuguese soccer clubs that are being investigated for tax evasion and money laundering. Cristiano Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes and his lawyer Carlos Osório are among those being investigated.
If Pinto now collaborates with the authorities, releasing his encrypted data to them, more revelations about the soccer world may come to light.
David Alaba happy to give you a buzz
Does Length of Gnabry’s hair (reddit)
A reddit user going by the handle “braidcuck” tackled an important question relevant to Bayern’s offense: does Serge Gnabry perform better with or without an afro? Apparently, “a handful of Bayern fans” were pro-fro, arguing that Gnabry performs better with an afro. At the end of a statistical analysis of Gnabry’s games for Bayern, braidcuck confirmed the impression of that eye-test, but disputed its statistical significance. I post the conclusion in full:
He played a total of 77 competitive games for Bayern in 2 seasons so far.
He has a 0.7 G+A/ game in general.
Without an Afro he has a 0.62 G+A/game.
WITH an Afro he has a 0.8 G+A/game.
A independent samples t-Test on this data reveals a F-value of 2.442 and a significance level of p=0.399. Thus, the length of Gnabry’s hair does NOT affect his performance, despite the averages with and without an Afro indicating otherwise at first.
Statistics don’t mean shit, Gnabry should never cut his hair.
Six board members resigned on Thursday at FC Barcelona in protest of the management of club president Josep Maria Bartomeu. Bartomeu is nearing the end of two terms as club president and has thus far rejected calls to move up the election of a successor, scheduled for 2021.
ESPN reports that Bartomeu himself had asked four of the people in question to resign. Bartomeu apparently only wants “people he can trust” for his final year as president.
Be that as it may, things are hardly cheery behind the scenes. ESPN writes,
One source told ESPN on Wednesday that life behind the scenes at Camp Nou is like the television drama “Game of Thrones,” explaining that everyone is vying to position themselves ahead of next summer’s presidential elections.
I for one am grateful that Bayern Munich takes such pains to maintain a united, responsible front office.
Dynamo Brest improves matchday experience with paper cut-outs
Belarus is the only European league that is still playing. The show has gone on but without fans. All those empty seats look so lonely, though. Dynomo Brest found a novel way to liven up the atmosphere.
Belarussian side @dynamobrest, who are still playing during the coronavirus pandemic, are trying to boost the atmosphere inside their stadium by using cut-out fans.— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) April 9, 2020
Supporters can buy virtual tickets online and in return, their faces are put on mannequins. pic.twitter.com/svjna14F4b