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Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich linked to another FC Barcelona starlet; Tottenham Hotspur getting serious on Corentin Tolisso?; Newcastle United ready to overpay for Eden Hazard?; Ralf Ragnick denies bonus claims at Manchester United; and MORE!

The day of reckoning is here...DER KLASSIKER!

Dinamo Kiev v Bayern München: Group E - UEFA Champions League Photo by Alexander Hassenstein - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

Bayern eyeing Almeida (Fichajes)

A report out of Spain says that Bayern Munich is keeping close tabs on FC Barcelona center-back prospect Diego Almeida:

For those who are clueless and do not have Diego Almeida on their radar, we will try to examine him in the best possible way. Basically, Almeida is one of the biggest talents in the youth academy of Futbol Club Barcelona and a player from the South American school of soccer who has his sights set firmly on the Blaugrana first team in the future.

However, the unknown name of Diego Almeida had already been linked with Paris Saint-Germain in an operation very similar to the one carried out with Xavi Simons. But he will not be the only one, as another big European club such as Bayern Munich, where will be the short-term future of one of the best players of La Masia?

Almeida is well-regarded and while Barca might be looking to generate some revenue, it would be shocking if the club opted to sell off a valuable asset like Almeida when he could become far more valuable in just a few years,

As for Almeida’s fit with Bayern? Well, the pathway to playing time at center-back is not exactly clear in Bavaria.

Spurs-Tolisso rumors heating up (Abendzeitung)

The rumors linking Corentin Tolisso to Tottenham Hotspur are spiking again as the Frenchman’s time with Bayern Munich is slowing grinding to an end:

Corentin Tolisso will probably leave Bayern after five years at the end of this season. The French midfielder’s contract expires in the summer and an extension is unlikely.

According to a report by the Guardian , the 27-year-old could move to England after his contract expires. Accordingly, the Tottenham Hotspurs show interest in a free transfer commitment. Their coach Antonio Conte is said to be a big fan of the French and want to bring him to London by summer at the latest.

Tolisso will get another chance to prove himself this weekend. Should he put in a strong performance against Borussia Dortmund, his value will be enhanced. Of course, the only way that value matters to Bayern Munich is if the club can sell Tolisso this winter.

Otherwise, a strong performance from Tolisso will only be useful in helping bolster his own coffers.

BVB not interested in Perisic, won’t loan Moukoko (Sport1)

Borussia Dortmund has heard they rumors linking them to Ivan Perisic, but BVB does not sound like they have much interest, nor is the club currently thinking about loaning away Youssoufa Moukoko:

The rumors from Italy that Croatian international Ivan Perisic is about to return to the Bundesliga, namely to Borussia Dortmund, do not really want to die down.

Now BVB sporting director Michael Zorc has spoken plainly about the speculation surrounding the Croatian attacking player, who had been with the black-and-yellows from 2011 to 2012.

In an exclusive interview with SPORT1, Zorc explained: “Ivan is an old acquaintance. His commitment is not an issue.”

Zorc also took a clear stance on Youssoufa Moukoko. Asked if he would consider a loan deal for the 17-year-old, the BVB manager replied, “That’s not an issue at the moment either.”

ICYMI: Weekend Warm-up Podcast Season 1, Episode 27 (Bavarian Football Works)

What a week…

Bayern Munich was trapped in the middle of roughly a billion stories, but none were bigger than the botched Ballon d’Or.

That subject — and a few others — were the focus of this Weekend Warm-up Podcast. Here is what we have on tap:

  • The reality that Robert Lewandowski was, indeed, better than Lionel Messi in 2020 and 2021 — and why the fanboys and bots just need to get help.
  • The insane Pini Zahavi rumor mill that the super agent totally contrived in an attempt to put some early pressure on Bayern Munich to extend Robert Lewandowski.
  • A dive into Der Klassiker and what Bayern Munich might to try and cover for the potentially gaping hole on its midfield.

Nagelsmann shows he’s still got it (@FCBayernEN)

Julian Nagelsmann got caught in 4K flashing his skills:

Hazard to Newcastle for €40 million? (The Hard Tackle)

Newcastle United might be getting desperate before it is actually getting started. Real Madrid anxiously wants to find a sucker to unload Eden Hazard on and Newcastle appears ready to say, “Take my money!”:

According to a report from El Nacional, Newcastle United have offered a sum of €40 million to Real Madrid for the signing of Belgian wing-wizard Eden Hazard, but have been told to up their offer.

Hazard completed his dream move to Real Madrid in the summer of 2019 after a hugely successful spell at Chelsea, during which he won two Premier League titles and two UEFA Europa League trophies. However, since his move to Spain, the 30-year-old has looked a shadow of his brilliant former self and has struggled with fitness problems as well.

From weight issues to recurring injury problems, Hazard has spent more time out on the sidelines in the Spanish capital than on the football pitch. To date, the ex-Lille star has managed just 54 appearances for Los Blancos, in which he has a paltry return of five goals and nine assists. To put things into perspective, he has missed over 60 games due to injury and fitness woes in his time at the club.

I like Hazard, but €40 million for him at this point is the equivalent of a bailout to Real Madrid.

Rangnick denies bonus-based deal for big signings (Football 365)

Manchester United boss Ralf Rangnick is denying that he has an incentive-laden contract that would be bolstered by signing some big-name players:

Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick has dismissed the “nonsense” suggestion that he will be handed a bonus for securing the signing of Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund. Rangnick held his first press conference as United boss on Friday, revealing his “major target” at the club and why he snubbed Chelsea last season.

When asked whether he would receive a bonus for signing Haaland, as has been reported in some quarters, Rangnick pretended to shuffle through his contract, before dismissing the notion: “10 million for Erling Haaland, 10 million for Kylian Mbappe, 10 million for Robert Lewandowski, 10 million for Joshua Kimmich. Of course, this is nonsense, there is no such thing in my contract.”

Reports suggest Rangnick will be handed £100million in January to overhaul the squad, with Edinson Cavani set to lead a six-man exodus from Old Trafford.

ICYMI: Bavarian Podcast Works: Preview Show — Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich (Bavarian Football Works)

As another eventful year in football comes to a close, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund once again gear up for a game which is undoubtedly the biggest in German football. People may not like the name Der Klassiker because, technically, this game isn’t a classic derby — but you can’t deny that the fixture has a compelling enough history to be its own thing at this point. There’s never been a game between Bayern and BVB that is considered low-stakes, which is good for the fans because things never get boring.

Here are our talking points ahead of the game:

  • The situation with ghost games in Germany, and reports that the Klassiker may end up with limited capacity.
  • Key absentees for both Bayern Munich and BVB, especially the situation with Joshua Kimmich.
  • The return of Erling Haaland, and problems he could cause Bayern defense.
  • Bayern’s issues with the midfield for this game, including reports that both Goretzka AND Kimmich could be out — who replaces them and what should we worry about?
  • Why gegenpressing is Bayern’s kryptonite and how BVB could exploit that weakness.
  • How Dortmund has fared this season, including the disappointing performance of Marco Rose (especially in Europe).
  • A final scoreline prediction for the game.

Davies honored by Forbes (@FCBayernUS)

Alphonso Davies was recognized by Forbes on its “30 Under 30 — Sports” list: