One of the longest-running transfer rumors at Bayern Munich has been the club’s interest in RB Leipzig midfielder Konrad Laimer.
Laimer, who is best known for his ability to win balls and provide a steady defensive presence, appears to want the move and the latest reports indicate that Bayern Munich might be eager to ink the Austrian to a deal shortly, which would allow him to transfer this summer as a free agent.
The most recent bit of information came from Sport Bild’s Christian Falk and Tobi Altschäffl on their Bayern Insider Podcast (as captured by @iMiaSanMia):
Bayern are close to completing the free transfer of Konrad Laimer for the summer. The move is getting more & more concrete. Laimer has rejected offers from England as well as a new deal at Leipzig. Bayern is his dream destination.
If true, what does it all mean? Let’s take a look at the possibilities:
If one comes in, does another have to go out? If so, who?
With Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, Marcel Sabitzer, and Ryan Gravenberch already in tow — plus Paul Wanner, who the club might or might not see as a No. 8-type of player, it would seem that the acquisition of Laimer might create a bit of a bigger logjam at a position where Julian Nagelsmann has already had trouble distributing playing time:
- Kimmich: He’s not going anywhere or seeing any playing time reduction. Verdict: Stays (duh).
- Goretzka: The Germany international just inked a new deal, but also seems not to be exactly what Nagelsmann wants from the position (in terms of being Kimmich’s partner) when Kimmich is already a mainstay. It is hard to imagine the two parties splitting up any time soon, but should Laimer usurp any of Goretzka’s playing time, it can be assumed that that it will not sit well with the former Schalke 04 player. Verdict: Stays, but this could have an adverse effect on Goretzka’s future soon enough.
- Sabitzer: Despite his very solid Hinrunde, it would appear that this Austrian is about to play his final months at the Allianz Arena. Verdict: Goes, Bayern Munich will try to sell him this upcoming summer.
- Gravenberch: Somehow, the Dutch youngster thought he was going to waltz into Säbener Straße and take on a lot of playing time. That has not happened — and he has also let the club know through the media that he is not happy about it. The lack of playing time might have had an adverse effect on Gravenberch’s ability to make the World Cup team for the Netherlands, which might have caused extra bitterness as well. While he is young and talented, he is also clearly unhappy. Adding another body into the mix, albeit one who is considered more defense than offensive, could add to the Dutchman’s discontent. Verdict: Stays, but could be sold after the 2023/24 season if he does not see a clear pathway to field time by that point.
- Wanner: The potential Austrian national team member has an abundance of ability, but it does not look as if Bayern Munich has decided on a position where he will get to put that talent on display. Wanner could be a No. 8...or a No. 10...or even a wing. His skillset translates to all of those spots. Adding Laimer might not directly take minutes from Wanner (he currently gets almost none anyway), but it will put another body into a quickly crowding mix. Verdict: Goes (on a loan assignment where he can get more playing time, which would be great for his development).
Would Laimer start or be a rotational player?
It is hard to think that a central midfield starting tandem of Kimmich and Goretzka could be broken up given how well they have played together, but perhaps Nagelsmann has a different vision for his midfield.
Laimer could also be considered a specialty player used as a substitute to help lock down games with his ball-winning and maybe as a spot-starter who can help fill the void left by injuries and rest days.
A more consistent rotation might actually help Kimmich reduce the career mileage he is putting on his body.
It is hard to pass up a talented, free transfer — especially one who has a history with the manager and a skillset that is not currently found on the roster. Yes, it would be a good, savvy move at a great price (free!). How that would all function together on a roster, though, might not always been smooth sailing for Nagelsmann to manage.
There would not seem to be any major roster movements at the position in the summer of 2023, but there could be a longer-term fallout. At this point, it just feels like the deal will be happening. I guess that would be one of those “good problems to have” type of deals, eh?
Bavarian Podcast Works: Weekend Warm-up Podcast Season 2, Episode 21
Bayern Munich’s luck has been pretty terrible at the World Cup. For Germany, is has not been much better, either.
For both club and country, Citizen King’s 1999 tune “Better Days” absolutely rings true (and yup, there may have been ample Thanksgiving beers consumed for me to remember that song).
Bayern Munich and Germany could use some new juju to change up the way things have been going and we’ll see if we can find some reason to get the optimism rolling.
This is what we have on tap for this episode:
- A look at what we can expect from a young and hungry Spain team against an inefficient and unsure Germany squad.
- Bayern’s rumored offer to Gladbach’s Marcus Thuram.
- Could Bayern Munich really expedite its pursuit of Florian Wirtz?
- What Bayern Munich’s backline will look like without Lucas Hernandez.
- Some final thoughts on the series finale of The Walking Dead.
Song of the Week: “Dylan’s Hard Rain” by Ryan Bingham
Released in 2009, “Dylan’s Hard Rain” was one of a string of very good songs by Ryan Bingham during that period. Again, I was turned on this one song during my early morning drives to work. Enjoy it — especially for the creative lyrics, which are just sung so matter-of-factly that it all just meshes in an awesome way:
Bingham’s overall catalog is very solid if this song piqued your interest.
I watched the finale of The Walking Dead and came away from the episode frustrated and here’s why:
- It felt extremely disingenuous to use the series finale (of what was once a great show) as a promotional platform for the spin-off shows. At this point, I don’t care about the spin-offs, I just wanted to see some sort of closure on the series in a meaningful way. Instead, we got what amounted to a no reason death for Rosita and a hell of a lot of openended plotlines.
- There was never a doubt that the protagonists were going to take Pamela down at The Commonwealth and escape the walker herd one last time. The show has been predictable for a long time, but even with a pre-determined outcome from the comics, the journey to getting to the end lost its way.
- The Maggie-Negan “makeup” was a nice moment (perhaps unrealistic in this universe based on the individual histories of the characters), but it lost its meaning because it was just used as a platform to promote a new show.
- Similarly, Daryl fought tooth-and-nail over the last two seasons to keep his people safe and to win back Alexandria. Now, he is just going to take off and create new adventures...in Europe? It just didn’t make sense. How the finale ended, it just seems like it was time for Daryl to take off the vest and settle in. Instead, he is off looking for more life-endangering adventures.
- In summary, the storyline surrounding The Commonwealth fell short of expectations and the finale — to me — was disappointing. It was a bit of a disservice to the actors who portrayed the characters and the fans who watched for so long. The show lost its true feel a long time ago, but there was a chance at redemption — which ironically was a major theme throughout the show’s history. Instead, the show limped out the door like an old rotter emerging from a vacated convenience store. It pains me to write that because at one point, this was a top five show for me. Those days, however, are long gone.
Bavarian Podcast Works: Postgame Show — Germany 1-2 Japan
Well here we go again. Another World Cup, and the same story for the German national team. Even with Hansi Flick and a whole host of Bayern Munich players on the roster, Germany have succumbed to Japan even after a fortuitous penalty gave them the lead in the first half. Now it looks like this tournament might be another write-off for the Germans.
Here are our talking points from the game:
- This loss is on Hansi Flick.
- Discussing the baffling lineup selection from the coach. Why didn’t Leon Goretzka start?
- Where was Sulinho? What happened to Musiala? The problem of players underperforming.
- The issues with the offense and creativity versus Japan.
- Did losing Leroy Sane sink Germany?
- What should Hansi Flick change versus Spain?
- Is Flick no longer the savior for Germany?
- Our closing thoughts on a final few topics — the new defense, Joshua Kimmich at right-back, Thomas Muller goals, and possible silver linings.
I will start by saying that I do not believe Spain is as good as they looked against Costa Rica and that Germany is not as hapless as they looked against Japan.
That said, I’ve been thrown from the #GermanyCanDoThisBus and landed in #ThisTeamIsFd Field. Though Germany has the talent to take down Spain and very well could make that happen, something does not feel right at the moment with this squad.
Prediction: (Pain) Spain 2-2 Germany
Other World Cup — Match Day 2 predictions include:
- Wales 2-1 Iran
- Qatar 0-4 Senegal
- Netherlands 2-0 Ecuador
- England 3-1 United States
- Tunisia 1-2 Australia
- Poland 2-1 Saudi Arabia
- France 3-0 Denmark
- Argentina 2-2 Mexico
- Japan 2-0 Costa Rica
- Belgium 3-0 Morocco
- Croatia 2-1 Canada
- Cameroon 1-3 Serbia
- South Korea 2-2 Ghana
- Brazil 2-2 Switzerland
- Portugal 2-1 Uruguay
- Last World Cup match day record: 11-5
- Last Bundesliga match day record: 4-5
- Overall Bundesliga record: 64-69
- DFL-Supercup record: 1-0
- DFB-Pokal record: 2-0
- Champions League record: 5-1
- World Cup record: 11-5
- WWU overall record: 83-77
- Guest predictions: 7-4