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Bayern Munich may be forced to sell Niklas Sule to prevent another Alaba situation

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The defender’s contract is expiring soon, and Bayern can’t afford to let him go for free.

FC Bayern Muenchen v 1. FSV Mainz 05 - Bundesliga Photo by Lukas Barth-Tuttas - Pool/Getty Images

Per a report from the print edition of Sport Bild (via Tz), Bayern Munich are seriously considering selling Niklas Sule this summer to prevent another David Alaba situation at the club. The defender, who’s coming out of a difficult season following an ACL tear, has a contract which expires next summer. Not extending him now would mean letting him leave for free next year, which the club cannot afford at the moment.

Sule has been the subject of some troubling hit-pieces by the media in the past, but this one seems completely plausible. The Bayern bosses may be reluctant to give Sule a big new contract based on his troubles this season, which the player may easily interpret as a lack of appreciation for his talents. Meanwhile, with Dayot Upamecano coming in and Lucas Hernandez settling well into the club, Sule’s importance becomes diminished as he is no longer a surefire starter in the back line.

Selling him this summer would give Bayern the funds to strengthen the roster, rather than losing him for free next year. Unfortunately, it’s likely that the transfer fee for selling him will be low, which makes replacing him difficult.

So far, we’ve had no rumors of any team being interested in Sule, showing that potential buyers may be few and far-between. Between that and his expiring contract, things don’t look good for a transfer fee. However, that would still be better than losing him for free to a European rival like Real Madrid, especially when Sule is still very young for a defender.

So instead of replacing Sule outright, Bayern may choose to bring back Chris Richards from his Hoffenheim loan, and have him and Tanguy Nianzou be the inexperienced backups to Upamecano and Hernandez. It’s another squad planning puzzle for Brazzo and co. to solve — one which may have severe repercussions on Julian Nagelsmann’s debut season.