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Daily Schmankerl: Real Madrid to battle Bayern Munich on SC Freiburg’s Nico Schlotterbeck; Mattias Ginter in advanced talks with Bayern?; FC Barcelona planning Erling Haaland move; Liverpool, Manchester United eyeing Denis Zakaria; and MORE!

I’m not going to lie...I’m still shaking off the holiday cobwebs.

1. FC Union Berlin v Sport-Club Freiburg - Bundesliga Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images

Madrid to battle Bayern on Schlotterbeck? (The Hard Tackle)

Real Madrid is reportedly going to engage in the bidding for rumored Bayern Munich transfer target Nico Schlotterbeck.

Schlotterbeck, who has been fantastic for SC Freiburg this season, was recently named the highest-rated defender in Europe’s top five leagues by WhoScored.com:

Real Madrid and Bayern Munich are reportedly keen on signing Nico Schlotterbeck, valued at around €20 million by Bundesliga club SC Freiburg.

According to a report by Spanish outlet Fichajes, Nico Schlotterbeck is the subject of interest from Real Madrid over a possible move in the summer transfer window. The 22-year-old defender is valued at around €20 million by SC Freiburg, with Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich also interested in him.

Zakaria not short on high-powered suitors (The Last Word on Sports)

Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder Denis Zakaria has Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Manchester United, and Liverpool all listed as interested parties:

Denis Zakaria’s next move may just be the most important one of his career. He wanted to step away from the comforts of Gladbach – where he has risen to stardom. And, now, he has the ultimate chance to do so.

As per Shrager, the options currently on the table are Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund, and Liverpool. With four such tempting options in their own right, choosing will be difficult. And that’s even if Gladbach allow Zakaria to leave this month. Either way, it’s best to assess the options.

Ginter in advanced talks with Bayern? (The Hard Tackle)

This does not seem correct, but reports out of Spain indicate that Borussia Mönchengladbach defender Matthias Ginter is in “advanced” talks to join Bayern Munich next summer:

Matthias Ginter is reportedly in advanced talks to join Bayern Munich and prefers arriving at the Allianz Arena instead of Barcelona.

According to a report by Catalan outlet El Nacional, Matthias Ginter is leaning towards joining Bayern Munich instead of Barcelona in the summer transfer window. The Borussia Monchengladbach defender is already in advanced talks with Die Roten over completing a free transfer.

This mostly seems unlikely because Bayern Munich has several open items on its agenda — including Niklas Süle — and sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidzic’s previous stance of being against a move for the Germany international.

Even with Brazzo not exactly being onboard, Ginter could have enough support at Bayern Munich for a deal to get done...the timing of these “advanced talks”, though, just does not seem feasible just yet.

ICYMI: Bavarian Podcast Works: Weekend Warm-up Podcast Season 1, Episode 31 (Bavarian Football Works)

Bayern Munich is not on the pitch, but that does not mean there is not a lot to talk about.

The big news has mostly revolved around the transfer market, but also with a former manager. Here is what we have on tap for the episode:

  • Chuck and Tom reuniting...and it felt so good!
  • A look at some of the biggest names that have been linked to Bayern Munich including Raphinha, Donny van de Beek, Denis Zakaria, Matthias Ginter, and more.
  • A look at Niko Kovac’s unfortunate situation with AS Monaco.
  • An appreciation of another fantastic season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. Seriously, it was awesome from start to finish.

Barca gearing up for big swing at Haaland (@FabrizioRomano)

FC Barcelona is dismissing its financial issues and plans on making a run at some big names on the transfer market — including Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland:

Spurs moving in on Griezmann? (Transfer Market Web)

Tottenham Hotspur could be plotting a move for Antoine Griezmann:

Purchased by Barcelona, from Atletico Madrid, back in summer 2019, on a 120 million euros transfer fee, 30-year old French international winger and forward Antoine Griezmann never managed to live up to the expectations set upon him, and had to join Colchoneros back, on a loan spell, four months ago.

To this end, Tottenham management, according to latest UK news, are ready to submit Blaugrana a 50 million euros transfer fee, in order to sign World Cup 2018 winner. Griezmann is currently earning a nearly 18 million euros annual salary.

A bientôt et au revoir Monsieur Cuisance (Bavarian Football Works)

The #StepOverKing never hit his potential with Bayern Munich, but his move to the club was essentially doomed from the start. A bit immature and perhaps a little (okay, maybe a lot) petulant, Cuisance was never going to be able to flash his silky skills at Bayern Munich because of the abundance of talent already on the depth chart.

Along the way, the Frenchman did not exactly endear himself to fans with his penchant for hurting teammates in practice, his boorish behavior on the bench, and his on-field antics. Still, Cuisance left a nice message to Bayern Munich fans on his Instagram account and finally got the move he needed to help his career.

When I think of Cuisance’s tenure, I’ll think of four things:

1 - The feeling of WTF when Bayern Munich announced they had signed him because they absolutely didn’t need a midfielder — especially a young one who was a bit high maintenance.

2 — His smooth footwork and skills (we didn’t gloss him the #StepOverKing for nothing).

3 — Going to Disney and not being recognized. This story will always crack me up.

4 — This goal...which was a beauty, no matter how you feel about him as a player:

In the end, he came, he stepped over, and he stepped out.