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Daily Schmankerl: Newcastle United to battle Bayern Munich, Real Madrid for Nico Schlotterbeck; Erling Haaland to FC Barcelona?; Arsenal, Sevilla chasing Dejan Kulusevski; Robert Lewandowski’s doppelgänger; and MORE!

Uh...here we go?

FBL-GER-BUNDESLIGA-FREIBURG-DORTMUND Photo by THOMAS KIENZLE/AFP via Getty Images

NUFC to chase Schlotterbeck (HITC)

SC Freiburg defender and Germany international Nico Schlotterbeck is pretty darn good. So good, that Bayern Munich is rumored to have interest in the 22-year-old.

Now, though, Schlotterbeck’s star is starting to shine a little brighter as other clubs are getting involved with Europe’s highest rated defender. Newcastle United is among those clubs:

Newcastle United could turn their attention to Freiburg defender Nico Schlotterbeck if they can’t get a deal done for Lille’s Sven Botman. Speaking on Sky Sports News in their Transfer Show, reporter Dharmesh Sheth detailed Newcastle\s pursuit of Botman. Sheth suggested that Lille want around £60million for Botman, making Newcastle’s pursuit very difficult.

That means Newcastle are having to look towards other options, with Sheth claiming Schlotterbeck is on the radar. It seems pretty clear that Howe wants to sign a left-footed centre back this month, with Botman the top target. Schlotterbeck is a highly-rated defender in his own right. The 22-year-old joined the Freiburg ranks from Karlsruhe and hasn’t looked back since. Bayern Munich are interested in signing Schlotterbeck, highlighting just what a coup this would be for Newcastle. Whilst Botman will be the main focus, Schlotterbeck is now a name for Newcastle fans to keep an eye on.

Aside of Bayern Munich and Newcastle United, Real Madrid is also reportedly interested in Schlotterbeck, who has hinted he would like to play at a big Bundesliga club rather than moving abroad.

Haaland to Barca is heating up (@DeportesCuatro)

It appears that FC Barcelona has made Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland their priority for the summer transfer window:

Barcelona’s main objective is the signing of Erling Haaland next summer. Joan Laporta maintains a great relationship with his representative Mino Raiola, and he would have already laid the foundations for the operation. According to what Deportes Cuatro has been able to know, the president of Barcelona would have the word of the agent so that the Norwegian can see Barça if he gathers the necessary money.

There is also some word floating around that Haaland would like to avoid playing with Kylian Mbappe at Real Madrid (you know, should the Paris Saint-Germain star actually make the move to Spain), so FC Barcelona would be the next logical choice for the Norwegian.

Is it me, or does Haaland bear a slight resemblance to Chewbacca in that pic above?

Anyway, if Haaland has truly decided to move to Spain, his presence could immediately improve with of those two La Liga squads.

Tuchel hopeful for Rüdiger (@FabrizioRomano)

Antonio Rüdiger is speeding into free agency, but Thomas Tuchel would love to retain him:

This is pretty uncanny (@mxcchi)

Hugh Jackman with Robert Lewandowski’s haircut absolutely gives the two men a strong resemblance:

Piatek back to Genoa? (Gianluca DiMarzio)

At one point, Krzysztof Piatek was making such a name for himself in Serie A that he was linked to Bayern Munich.

Lately, though, things have not gone Piatek’s way.

When Piatek transferred from Genoa to Hertha Berlin, things never clicked. At time, Piatek has looked hapless and unconfident. Now, he’s mired on the bench and could be headed back to Genoa:

Genoa is looking for a striker to give Shevchenko to climb up the standings and is not only waiting for Atalanta’s ok for Miranchuk and Piccoli, but is working on Piatek’s return. The Rossoblù have reached an agreement for the return of the Pole with Herta Berlin, on the basis of an onerous loan with right of redemption for a total of 17 million euros. The last word is up to the player, who is considering whether to return to the Rossoblù after three years.

Here’s a little more on the situation:

Bürki to AS Saint-Etienne? (Sport1)

Roman Bürki’s fall from grace at Borussia Dortmund has been difficult to understand, but it looks like he could finally find a new home:

Will the Borussia Dortmund chapter soon be over for Roman Bürki? According to Sky information, the 31-year-old goalkeeper is being courted by the French first division club AS Saint-Etienne.

According to this, the French club are hoping for a loan, while BVB is aiming for a sale. As the third keeper behind Gregor Kobel and Marwin Hitz, Bürki no longer plays a role and has not played a competitive game this season.

Already last summer, BVB tried to delete the veteran from the payroll, but a transfer did not materialize. At Saint-Etienne, Bürki could now replace the injured goalkeeper Etienne Green.

Arsenal, Sevilla take lead on Kulusevski (Transfer Market Web)

While Bayern Munich was somehow tied to Juventus winger Dejan Kulusevski, it appears that noise has died down. Arsenal and Sevilla, however, are rumored to be in the mix for the Juventus man:

Already tracked by Arsenal, 21-year old Swedish international winger Dejan Kulusevski, according to Sport, has been targeted by Sevilla FC as well. Fending for Juventus since 2020/21, former Atalanta and Parma player has been set a 35 million euros transfer fee, a sum Rojiblancos can’t afford to pay at all.

Still on a deal with Bianconeri until June 2025, the 2000-born, fancied by Spanish club for a loan spell, might however end up staying put, and then properly put up for sale ahead of next summer.

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.

Lukaku going nowhere (Sport1)

For all of the nonsense and controversy that Romelu Lukaku created with his recent statements, there really is nothing that Chelsea FC can do about it. Lukaku is talented, but might be a dolt? The Belgian has time to fix this by performing on the pitch, but he has not lived up to the lofty expectations many people have had for him:

According to SPORT1 information, there is nothing to this speculation, Lukaku will definitely not leave Chelsea in the winter. The striker had a conversation with Tuchel on Monday that went well. At the moment, it looks like Lukaku will return to Chelsea’s squad in the next game. The Londoners meet Tottenham in the League Cup semi-finals on Wednesday.

To think, there were some pundits saying Lukaku was at Robert Lewandowski’s level.

Campus highlights (@fcbayerncampus)

If you wanted to see highlights from Bayern Munich II in 2021, well, here you go: