In fourteen league games so far this season, Real Madrid have been sloppy defensively and conceded a total of fourteen goals. With just two clean sheets in their domestic campaign so far, it is clear that the Merengues have holes in their back-line.
It is the fullback position, right-back, in particular, that seems oddly weak on paper. Dani Carvajal is no doubt a great player on his day, yet, his only real replacement trusted by Carlo Ancelotti is Lucas Vazquez, a makeshift fullback forced to employ his trade in defence.
Given their lack of options, Los Blancos identified Malo Gusto as a possible reinforcement in the coming windows. The Olympique Lyon starlet, at just 19 years of age, would be a long-term fix to the acute problem.
According to reports from TZ (h/t SPORT), the chances of Real Madrid signing the right-back have been hampered by Bayern Munich. The German club are on the lookout for a new defender in view of Benjamin Pavard’s uncertain future and Gusto is the chosen one. Furthermore, the Bavarians are said to have practically ‘tied down’ his signature.
Real Madrid are not the only Spanish club keeping tabs on Gusto, with Barcelona very much in the running. Given the high competition for the youngster, Real Madrid will be compelled to catalyse their negotiations with his party soon.
Bayern Munich’s right-back situation could get murky if Benjamin Pavard moves on. Noussair Mazraoui has shown flashes of what he can, but it would leave Josip Stanišić as the one backup for both right-back and left-back.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano says that Bayern Munich will be looking to sign Emiliano Martinez:
FC Bayern are not working to sign Dibu Emiliano Martínez despite links — no talks ongoing. #FCBayern— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) December 22, 2022
Alexander Nübel and Yann Sommer are the two options for Bayern to replace Manuel Neuer. Martinez, expected to stay at Aston Villa. #AVFC pic.twitter.com/TkbBDPB5k5
This is all good by me. #TeamSommer
Bavarian Podcast Works: Special Edition — Wrapping up the World Cup and breaking down Germany’s poor showing (Bavarian Football Works)
No Bayern Munich players walked out of Qatar with championship medal, but that does not mean the World Cup was uneventful or not worthwhile.
The tournament was a fun, rollicking, and sometimes unpredictable affair that ultimately saw Lionel Messi finalize his case to be known as the G.O.A.T., France make an unbelievable comeback in the finale led by its own superstar, Kylian Mbappe, and most pertinent here, Germany flail and fail its way home far earlier than it should have.
We dusted off former BFW podcaster/writer and current Daily Mail scribe Jake Fenner for a special edition to talk about the tourney’s big happenings. This is what we have on tap for this episode:
- A look at the fantastic finale — and why Argentina deserved to win.
- Lionel Messi’s strong claim to being the best ever.
- Kylian Mbappe’s growth as a leader.
- Germany’s massive flame out, where things go from here, and why some fans might have missed Timo Werner.
RB Leipzig is not going to be entertaining offers for defender Josko Gvardiol — even insanely rich proposals:
Apart from the scene when a certain Lionel Messi dizzily dribbled him, Josko Gvardiol played a strong World Cup. The centre-back was one of the factors that ensured Croatia finished third in Qatar. So it’s no wonder that Europe’s top clubs are vying for the RB Leipzig star.
If Max Eberl has his way, interested parties can save themselves the trouble of wanting to buy the 20-year-old out of his contract, which runs until 2026. When asked about any mail requests for Gvardiol, Eberl said with a wink: “They’re all in the spam folder. Gvardiol, offer, direct spam. So I haven’t received any so far,” said the new RB sports director on ServusTV.
If Gvardiol can continue to grow as a player, he is going to make Die Roten Bullen very rich at some point.
Manchester United does not appear to be giving up on its pursuit of FC Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong:
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag remains interested in Dutch midfielder Frenkie de Jong, and would still like to bring him to Old Trafford if he is to leave Barcelona in 2023. 90min understands Ten Hag has confirmed as such to the player’s representatives as he looks to continue building a squad capable of helping United challenge for titles.
De Jong was subject to the most public of unsuccessful transfer pursuits for over three months of the summer transfer window earlier this year, with United and Ten Hag making him their primary target. Ten Hag had identified De Jong as key to his team build having worked the player before at Ajax, and knowing his qualities in carrying or distributing the ball through midfield.
90min has learned De Jong and his camp remain intent on retrieving the outstanding amount in the future, or a rightful amount the camp feel he’s owed, despite Barcelona’s financial problems which will only worsen following their group stage exit from the Champions League.
What. A. Game. Was that the best game of football ever? Maybe. The 2022 FIFA World Cup comes to a close with an incredible 3-3 draw between France and Argentina in the final. For once, a Bayern Munich player will not be coming home with the trophy as Messi and his Argentina side triumphed on penalties to win a well-earned world champion title.
In this episode, Schnitzel and INNN talk about the following:
- What this World Cup final means for the two of us in India. Adding some cultural context for those who may not know.
- Our quick impressions about the final. Is Lionel Messi the greatest ever?
- Kylian Mbappe — what a player. The one player who always lives up to the hype.
- The incredible talent and quality of the French national team.
- Should Benjamin Pavard have played instead of Jules Kounde? The strange egotism of Pavard these days.
- The incredible performance of Dayot Upamecano — our only hope vs PSG.
- The implications of this final on Bayern’s upcoming Champions League clash vs PSG.
- How this World Cup seems to have completely derailed Bayern Munich’s season.
- Can Julian Nagelsmann pull back his players from this disappointment?
- If the worst happens, how should Nagelsmann be judged?
- How the goalkeeper search is going so far — our impressions.
- Closing out with a quick note about Bayern Frauen.
- A request — please do suggest topics to be discussed in the coming weeks.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s future seems to be getting closer to being settled. The latest reports indicate that the former Manchester United star is going to siugn with Al-Nassr:
Saudi Arabian side Al-Nassr ‘expect’ Cristiano Ronaldo to agree to join them on a free transfer before the end of the year. The Portugal forward remains without a club after leaving Manchester United.
Sure, you’ve seen these before, but maybe this is the one loan aside of Alexander Nübel’s to AS Monaco that is working out:
Never get tired watching this assist. Great determination and awareness from Malik Tillman. His ball control is superb. pic.twitter.com/WlUYP0PWmv— (@WATP72RFC) December 16, 2022