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Daily Schmankerl: Javi Martinez in talks with Athletic Bilbao, Jerome Boateng upset over fine, Pepe Reina’s coronavirus scare, and more!

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Javi Martinez’s agent is already talking with Athletic Bilbao, but Martinez may not be a perfect fit. In Bayern, Jerome Boateng vented to Bild his frustration over being fined for rushing to be with his sick son.

FC Bayern Muenchen v FC Augsburg - Bundesliga Photo by A. Beier/Getty Images for FC Bayern

Javi Martinez’s agent in talks with Athletic Bilbao (Sky Sport)

Javi Martinez may already be plotting the next, possibly last step in his distinguished career: according to Sky Sport, his agent is already in talks with his Basque home club, Athletic Bilbao. Javi has a strong advocate in the president of the club, Aitor Elizegi, but it is not entirely clear whether Bilbao really needs Martinez.

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Sky Sport says Javi could be an option in central defense or midfield, but he might overlap with center-back Unai Núñez (23) — a promising defender who has also been linked with Bayern Munich. FC Getafe is also looking for a defender and has shown interest in Javi. Bayern is ready for him to move on before he enters the final year of his contract.

Boateng upset after Bayern fines him for unauthorized trip (FCBayern.com, Bild)

Jerome Boateng was involved in an automobile accident earlier this week when his car went off the road into a guardrail as he was driving home to Munich. He had gone to see his son near Leipzig.

Bayern has responded by fining Boateng for making the trip without the club’s permission. In a press release, Bayern stated,

Boateng has transgressed the guidelines issued by the club by being too far away from his home. These guidelines govern the behaviour of the FC Bayern players in the current situation in line with the Bavarian state government’s directives on restrictions on movement and the recommendations of the health authorities. FC Bayern believes the club has a responsibility to be a role model.

The money from the fine will be donated to Munich hospitals. Boateng took issue with the club fine and defended his actions in a statement to Bild:

I’ll accept every punishment in the world if it’s justified. And I know that it undoubtedly was a mistake not to inform the club about my trip, but at the moment I had only my son in my head. He was not doing well with his health. When a son calls his father, then of course I’ll hit the road, no matter what time of day! For him, I’ll accept any punishment; he’s my son, after all. I’d like to see the father who doesn’t hit the road in such a moment to be by the side of his four-year-old son. If there’s a punishment for it, then respect. I think that’s sad.

Pepe Reina describes terrifying bout with coronavirus (Corriere dello Sport)

Veteran keeper Pepe Reina, who currently is playing first-team soccer for Aston Villa, gave a harrowing account of his battle with the coronavirus in an interview with the Corriere dello Sport. He told the paper, “I haven’t gone out for eighteen days.”

And with good reason:

I have been isolated since I felt the first symptoms of the virus. Fever, dry cough, a headache that never went a way, a feeling of fatigue... The only scare was when I couldn’t get any oxygen for twenty-five minutes, as if my throat had suddenly contracted and the air couldn’t pass through it...I spent the first six, eight days shut up in a room.

Reina now is recovering in the company of his wife, five children, and his in-laws. Gute Besserung, Pepe!

Street soccer in Brazil

Seriously, take a closer look. This is genius:

Bayern #StuckAtHomeChallenge

Are you ready to take the FC Bayern #StuckAtHomeChallenge? Who are you and what are you doing?

Bayern II highlights of the season (so far)

The kind folks over at FCBayern.com have put together a highlight video for the season-to-date in the 3.Liga for Bayern II. You can watch the video here. If you need a reminder where things stood when the season was halted, Bayern II had fought their way up into 7th place in the table, just SIX points out of first place.