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Daily Schmankerl: The future plans for Bayern Munich’s current bench players; PSG inching closer to David Alaba; Is Bayern still scoping Pau Torres?; Why Douglas Costa didn’t join AC Milan; and MORE!

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Here we go! One more day until Der Klassiker!

SS Lazio v Bayern Muenchen - UEFA Champions League Round Of 16 Leg One Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Bild’s info on Bayern’s bench players (Bild)

Bild (behind the Bild+ paywall) has the latest scoop on Bayern Munich’s plans for some of its bench players. For a few of the players who were brought in last summer, it could be a quick turnaround on their exit from Bavaria:

  • Douglas Costa: As expected, Costa is going to return to Juventus, where The Old Lady is likely going to tell him to pack his bags once again. For Costa, there is interest from a few English clubs (namely Leeds United), so he could be on the move rather quickly.
  • Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting: Bayern Munich is going to keep Choupo-Moting around if a new deal can be reached. The club likes his versatility in being able to back-up multiple positions and he is also considered a good team player and locker room personality.
  • Marc Roca: Despite being buried on the depth chart and not really have the full confidence of manager Hansi Flick at this point, Roca and Bayern both seem keen to keep the relationship moving forward.
  • Tiago Dantas: Perhaps the most controversial of the bench players in terms of his value and potential, sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidzic is said to have not seen enough form the Portuguese midfielder to pull the trigger on his rumored €8 million purchase option. Despite the relatively cheap cost and an alleged big fan in Flick, Dantas could be on his way back to Benfica.
  • Bouna Sarr: Sarr has clearly not established himself and is absolutely the nuclear option for Flick at right-back at this stage. Bild says that Bayern Munich will either keep the player or take a loss in an effort to just move him out of town.
  • Alexander Nübel: As has been all over the news, Nübel could be heading out on a loan. Earlier this season both Bayern Munich and Nübel’s camp were reluctant to pursue a loan assignment, but now Nübel’s camp is said to be pushing for a move. Nübel had planned to play more than he has this season and that lack of game time has offset the initial excitement and satisfaction he felt in securing a tidy bonus and salary. There is even some speculation that there could be a clause in Nübel’s deal that guaranteed him 10 games or some kind of clause activated. As of now, though, that is just pure and total speculation and it is difficult to even ascertain whether it is true — and what exactly Bayern Munich’s “penalty” might be. Again, that should really only regarded as pure speculation by some pundits at this stage.

Looking back, it is hard to say Bayern Munich did as well as many thought during the summer transfer window. For many, the moves for Nübel, Sarr, and Costa were always a stretch, while Dantas and Roca were widely heralded and lauded. Of all the moves, Choupo-Moting seems to be the one that has hit the mark for the club. Roca has a legitimate chance to break through at some point, but it likely will not be as a starter. To think anyone will unseat Leon Goretzka or Joshua Kimmich any time soon is a pipe dream.

As for Dantas, it will probably come down to whether or not Bayern Munich thinks it can increase the market value of the youngster.

PSG getting close to Alaba (Transfer Market Web)

Every day I wake up and hope the David Alaba transfer saga ends...and every night I go to bed disappointed that it is still going on.

Okay, so maybe it doesn’t irritate me that much, but it surely has been a grind to cover. Now, Paris-Saint Germain might in the pole position to land Bayern Munich defender David Alaba:

Since PSG seem the only club around meaning to meet his financial demands, Austrian international defensive all-rounder David Alaba (28), according to Sport Bild, might be joining French giants, whom he defeated in last Champions League final match, bidding Bayern Munich farewell, on a free move, as expected. Allegedly on a pre-agreement with Real Madrid instead, Alaba is still tracked by most Premier League giants as well, namely Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester City.

Hopefully Alaba can nail down his next home soon and divert his focus back to the pitch with Bayern Munich. As long as he is on the roster, Hansi Flick is going to call his number. If the Bavarians are only going to get a few more months of the Austrian star, let’s hope it is the best possible effort he can offer.

Another Bayern link to Torres (Transfer Market Web)

I don’t understand the continued links between Bayern Munich and seemingly random defenders these days. We had previously heard about Bayern Munich taking a look at Villarreal’s Pau Torres, but those rumors are now cropping back up even after the Bavarians signed Dayot Upamecano. With Torres being a left-footed defender, is it possible Bayern Munich is thinking about bringing in some depth to compete with — or even back-up — Lucas Hernandez?

According to latest German news, Spanish international centre-back Pau Torres (24) has been targeted by Bayern Munich. Already tracked also by Barcelona FC, Real Madrid, and both Manchester giants, Villarreal powerhouse is meant to be on his way out on an about 45 million euros transfer fee.

So...€45 million feels way too steep for a depth piece.

ICYMI: BFW’s podcast preview for Der Klassiker (Bavarian Football Works)

If you are looking to kill a little time this morning, check out our podcast preview for Saturday’s Der Klassiker.

Why Costa didn’t join Milan (Calciomercato)

By all accounts, Douglas Costa’s stay in Munich will be short-lived, but he still has some clubs that want him:

Douglas Costa is a talented player, one of those who can determine with a single play. But the second experience at Bayern Munich is not going according to initial expectations. The Brazilian winger struggles to find a place in an extraordinary team capable of winning everything in the last calendar year. Little used by Flick but still an important resource for the Bavarian club in a second part of the season so full of close engagements.

In the January transfer market, Douglas Costa’s name was strongly associated with Milan. The Rossoneri club had indirectly obtained information, ready to take action on the player only in case of real opportunity. But Bayern Munich have never considered the idea of ​​early terminating the loan from Juventus.

It appears that Bayern Munich did not want to risk being caught too thin for the stretch run.