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Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich eyeing Real Madrid’s Federico Valverde; FC Barcelona holding a fire sale; Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, and Newcastle United competing for Joao Felix?; and MORE!

Here we go! We all made it to Friday!

FC Bayern München v FC Barcelona: Group E - UEFA Champions League Photo by Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Bayern eyeing Valverde? (The Hard Tackle)

Bayern Munich is reportedly pondering move for Real Madrid’s 23-year-old midfielder Federico Valverde:

Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich are reportedly keen on signing Federico Valverde from Real Madrid next summer. According to a report by Spanish outlet Fichajes, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich are interested in snapping up Federico Valverde in next summer’s transfer window. The Uruguayan midfielder is growing increasingly discontented with his position at Real Madrid.

I can’t see Bayern Munich doing this despite the — alleged — previous interest by the Bavarians in Valverde. It does seem that Joshua Kimmich’s status as unvaccinated has made the club wary. Now that Kimmich is battling lung issues due to COVID-19 as well, Bayern Munich could be re-thinking its plans at the position. Corentin Tolisso, Marc Roca, and Michael Cuisance are already rumored to be on their way out the door, which would totally strip down the club’s current depth chart.

Multitude of Bayern players recognized for UCL Group Stage Squad of the Week (WhoScored.com)

As expected, Bayern Munich dominated the “Group E” Best XI. Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Müller, Leroy Sane, Leon Goretzka, Joshua Kimmich, Kingsley Coman, Alphonso Davies, Dayot Upamecano, and Benjamin Pavard comprised nine of the 11 slots on the squad:

As for all of the groups mashed together, Lewandowski, Sane, and Upamecano got the nod:

Barca planning culture change with sales? (Gerard Romero via @BarcaTimes)

We covered this yesterday here, but it was so striking, I also wanted to address it in the Daily Schmankerl as well. FC Barcelona’s unceremonious exit from the Champions League might just trigger a roster upheaval and the ever-dreaded “culture change.” Marc-André ter Stegen, Frenkie de Jong, and Sergino Dest are all reportedly on the roster chopping block:

That is a terribly unflattering pic of De Jong. He looks...bloated. Perhaps he needs to hydrate more?

Anyway, all three players have been linked to Bayern Munich in the recent past. For the right price, De Jong and Dest could be on Bayern Munich’s radar. Ter Stegen, however, would need a rich club like Newcastle United to bring him in, pay the transfer fee, and fork over enough in salary to keep him happy. There might only be a handful of teams globally able to do that.

ICYMI: Bavarian Podcast Works: Postgame Show — Bayern Munich 3-0 Barcelona (Bavarian Football Works)

The group stage of the Champions League is over, and Bayern Munich have come out of it with a perfect record. 6/6 wins, 22 goals scored, only 3 conceded. FC Barcelona are, meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum — even with a new coach in Xavi, they find themselves haplessly knocked down into the inferior cup competition because they simply did not have the quality to stand toe to toe with the Bavarians.

Here are our talking points from the game:

  • A quick look at the lineups of both sides, including some points on the nuances of Xavi’s setup, including his use of Dembele, Araujo, and Sergino Dest.
  • How the game went — basic recap including the game state and the feel of the goals.
  • Why Barcelona didn’t manage to capitalize on their decent start.
  • How Benjamin Pavard and the Bayern defense actually had a GOOD game for a change!
  • A quick recap of the Bayern midfield, focusing on the performances of Jamal Musiala and Corentin Tolisso. Can this pivot be an option going forward?
  • A complaint on the nature of Bayern’s attack at the moment — too much emphasis on individual brilliance, and far too little use of Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller.
  • Closing thoughts on the game and the outro.

Müller has no chill when it comes to Barca (@esmuellert_)

Thomas Müller sure knows how to dig in, eh?

Suitors are lining up for Felix (The Hard Tackle)

At one point Bayern Munich was linked to Atletico Madrid star Joao Felix before he made the move to Los Colchoneros. Now, though, the Bavarians seem like one of the only power clubs not involved in trying to get Felix as Manchester United, Newcastle United, Arsenal, and Liverpool are rumored to have interest in the 22-year-old:

According to a report by Cadena SER, as relayed by Calciomercato, Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester United and Newcastle United are reportedly engaged in a transfer tussle to sign Joao Felix. The 22-year-old could be on his way out of Atletico Madrid soon.

Joao Felix joined Atletico Madrid on a big-money move from Benfica in the summer transfer window of 2019. Widely regarded as one of the most highly-rated footballers in the world, the Portuguese forward was expected to be a long-term successor for Antoine Griezmann. However, he has struggled to make an impression in the last two years and is yet to nail down a first-choice berth.

Felix probably needs to move to a squad with a more free-flowing system where he cn use his talents. From that mix above, he would be hard-pressed to do better than Liverpool, but playing time could be difficult to come by there as well.