Bayern Munich center-back prospect spent the 2020/2021 season on loan with SV Darmstadt 98, but the 21-year-old made a good enough impression to draw the interest of several clubs according to a report from kicker.
Mai, who was once thought to be one of the jewels of Bayern Munich’s campus, could be caught up in a numbers game along the backline in Bavaria:
Lars Lukas Mai has played his way into the field of vision of other clubs. The right-footer was loaned from FC Bayern to Darmstadt 98 last season and was a regular there. In his 29 second division appearances, Mai attracted employers such as Fortuna Düsseldorf, Hamburger SV and Schalke 04.
Not long ago, it was easy to think Mai and Chris Richards were headed for first-team roster spots in the center-back unit with Niklas Süle and Lucas Hernandez. Now, however, those visions have become a bit cloudy.
Bayern Munich let David Alaba and Jerome Boateng walk away, but brought in Tanguy Nianzou in 2020 and Dayot Upamecano will join the squad in the coming days. All of a sudden, prospects like Mai and Richards are caught up in a bit of a logjam.
In addition to those aforementioned players, there is also talk that newly-acquire Omar Richards has the capability to slide in centrally, while Benjamin Pavard reportedly also has a long-term plan to eventually shift inside to center-back.
While Süle’s name has been bandied about in transfer talks, the rest of the core group could remain in place even if Süle moves on. Whatever happens, the Bavarians will be making some key decisions on players like Mai and Richards in the coming weeks.
The biggest “x-factor”, of course, is whether Julian Nagelsmann uses a back-three or a back-four lineup. That decision alone will play a key role in determining who stays and who goes from Bayern Munich’s defensive corps.