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Daily Schmankerl: Barcelona’s Joan LaPorta relishes links to Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski, Liverpool’s Mo Salah; Bayern eyeing PSG’s Thilo Kehrer for 2023?; Gareth Bale to Cardiff City?; Arsenal eyeing Cody Gakpo; and MORE!

Ah, Bayern Munich is set to take on SC Freiburg this weekend. Being back to normal feels good, eh?

FC Liverpool - Bayern Munich Photo by Sven Hoppe/picture alliance via Getty Images

Laporta enjoying Lewy, Salah rumors (Abendzeitung)

Barcelona president Joan Laporta seems to be relishing the fact that his club has been linked to players like Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski and Liverpool’s Mo Salah:

A radio interview that caused a stir: club president Joan Laporta spoke late Monday evening on “RAC1”, among other things, about possible star transfers. While Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund) apparently lacks pure enthusiasm for Barça, things are probably different with Bayern striker Robert Lewandowski and Mo Salah (Liverpool FC).

Laporta: “They are great players. All good footballers want to come to Barça. I’m not going to go into detail. I don’t want to make things more difficult.” He fueled the rumors reported by the daily “Sport” that Lewandowski wanted to move to Catalonia. In conversation: a four-year contract, a transfer volume of around 60 million euros.

Bayern to exercise option on Scott, still might sell (Daily Record)

Bayern Munich prospect Christopher Scott has been linked to a move to Celtic or Brentford on a free transfer, but the Bavarians have an ace up their sleeve.

Bayern Munich will trigger their option to extend Scott’s deal, but will still be ready to sell him this summer if the right offer comes in. Essentially, Bayern Munich is able to prevent losing Scott via a free transfer with this move:

Celtic could land Christopher Scott for as little as £250,000 if they win the race for “one of the biggest talents in Germany”.

Record Sport can reveal that Bayern Munich WILL trigger the one-year option they have on his current contract, which ends in May, to ensure they don’t lose the teenager star for free.

But the Bundesliga giants are happy to let the attacking midfielder leave the Allianz Arena after that as the Germany Under-19 international searches for first team football.

A source close to the negotiations told Record Sport: “Bayern Munich has the option of extending Christopher’s contract by one more year and this is one-sided on the club’s part. Bayern Munich won’t let him go for free because he’s one of the biggest talents in Germany and it would cost around €300,000 to €400,000 for him. It’s about finding the best solution for a young player. The option for his contract is at the end of May and that will be taken up by Bayern Munich. Bayern Munich at the moment aren’t well known for bringing players into the first team and Christopher is looking for a new challenge. It’s clear that Glasgow Celtic would be a massive option for him and they have been in talks but the English Premier League is also an option for someone who is a massive talent. Celtic are serious contenders because they are a massive club and they are very serious about trying to sign him.”

Sky’s Florian Plettenberg thinks Bayern Munich could ask as much as €1 million for Scott:

Bavarian Podcast Works: Preview Show — Bayern Munich vs. SC Freiburg (Bavarian Football Works)

Right before the international break, Bayern Munich ousted Union Berlin in the Bundesliga, but there is no rest for the weary. The Bavarians will now face off with a pesky SC Freiburg side, who is looking to hang on to a top-six position.

Here is what we have on tap for this episode:

  • A look at where both teams sit in the Bundesliga table.
  • The amazing season (so far) for SC Freiburg.
  • Why German national team fans might want to keep an eye on Christian Gunter and Nico Schlotterbeck.
  • A rundown of who might be in this week for Bayern Munich and why some key players might get the conservative treatment from Julian Nagelsmann.
  • A guess on Nagelsmann’s lineup, why we are expecting the back-three to return, and how we might see Kingsley Coman at wing-back.
  • A prediction on the match.

Bayern eyeing Kehrer for 2023? (Abendzeitung)

Bayern Munich could be eyeing a move for Paris Saint-Germain defender and Germany international Thilo Kehrer in the summer of 2023:

His contract in the French capital expires in the summer of 2023, and at the moment it doesn’t look like Kehrer wants to extend it. FC Bayern has been dealing with him for a long time. The problem, however, is that any player who has spent a few years at PSG does not want to lose his very, very generous salary if he changes.

If the French still want to get a fee for Kehrer, they would have to sell him this summer. But the native of Tübingen doesn’t want to take any risks a few months before the Winter World Championships in Qatar. In addition, free transfer is the new “hot currency” of every professional. Maybe Kehrer would be an issue again for FC Bayern in 2023.

I’d take a hard pass on this. Kehrer might be versatile, but I don’t think he’s all that good.

Bavarian Podcast Works: Postgame Show — Netherlands 1-1 Germany (Bavarian Football Works)

It was an international friendly but it didn’t feel like it at times as Germany faced the Netherlands on their home turf in Amsterdam. Two former Bayern Munich coaches went head to head and ended up sharing spoils and both teams came out of the match with pros and cons to consider. Unlike with the Israel match, there was plenty to discuss this time.

Here are our talking points from the game:

  • Hansi Flick surprises everyone by not going with a back-three after using it against Israel.
  • How GOOD is Jamal Musiala? Just a looooong monologue on the amazing qualities of Germany’s golden boy.
  • Should Musiala displace Leon Goretzka from the starting XI? A question for both Bayern and Germany.
  • Reviewing the rest of the good performances — Leroy Sane, Thomas Muller, Timo Werner, and Nico Schlotterbeck.
  • Now looking at the bad — Florian Neuhaus, Julian Draxler, and Julian Brandt. Yikes.
  • Why Germany is nowhere near as deep as France and Hansi Flick should change up his selection decisions.
  • Changes that Hansi can make to the lineup for the Nations League, potentially putting Niklas Sule at right-back.
  • David Raum didn’t look anywhere near as hot as he did against Israel — who will be the starting LB at Qatar?

Bale to Cardiff City? (Sport1)

Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale could be considering a move to Cardiff City:

Gareth Bale has not played at Real Madrid for almost two years. The Welshman is currently not part of coach Carlo Ancelotti’s plans and will leave Real Madrid on a free transfer next summer.

As the English Sun now reports, Cardiff City is interested in signing the 32-year-old. The prerequisite for a move to his hometown is the World Cup qualification of the Welsh national team.

Should the ‘Dragons’ miss out, Bale is said to be retiring next summer. However, should they qualify for the final tournament, the four-time Champions League winners would like to sign a six-month contract in Cardiff in order to be fit for the World Cup in Qatar. At the latest after that he will hang up his shoes.

You know how I feel about it...if Bale would take a lesser salary, he can bring his clubs to Bavaria.

Bavarian Podcast Works Season 4, Episode 28 (Bavarian Football Works)

We’re halfway done with the international break and there’s not much for Bayern Munich fans to talk about at the moment. Good thing Germany exists, or we’d have to cancel this podcast. Hansi Flick just beat Israel 2-0 with a bunch of fringe players on the National Team, and with it being a World Cup year and the Netherlands game left to play, there’s a lot to talk about. Of course, there were some transfer rumors too.

In this episode, Tom and Ineednoname discuss:

  • Germany’s weird setup against Israel.
  • How individual players performed, especially guys like Havertz, Werner, Musiala, Raum, and Schlotterbeck.
  • Did Hansi Flick copy Julian Nagelsmann back-three style setup with Germany?
  • How will Hansi Flick line up the defense in Qatar? Who plays at right-back? Does Hansi have a problem with Baku?
  • What kind of a setup will we see for the Netherlands game? Should Julian Weigl keep playing for Germany?
  • Is Noussair Mazraoui worth the money Bayern are offering?
  • Bayern Munich’s newfound relationship with Raiola and how that affects transfers going forward.
  • Why Matthias Ginter doesn’t seem like a serious target for Bayern.
  • How Mazraoui would be used by Nagelsmann.

NUFC eyeing former Bayern target (@FabrizioRomano)

Bologna outside-back Aaron Hickey has been steadily linked to Bayern Munich, but could be receiving a nice package from Newcastle United:

Gakpo advised to pick Gunners over Bayern (Football London)

PSV Eindhoven’s Cody Gakpo could be ready to move on to Arsenal FC:

Regardless of the interest in him from the Allianz Arena, Gakpo has been urged to reject a switch to Bavaria in favour of a move to the Emirates Stadium by former PSV and Ajax star Kenneth Perez.

As quoted by ESPN, the Dane said: “That [Arsenal] would be a really good club for him. This is of course no longer the Arsenal of the past and they are between fifth and tenth place. They are still not there, but you just can’t look at league standings. Last year they finished tenth. If they have a good year, they will finish fourth.”

Sport1 added some additional context:

Arsenal are looking for reinforcements on the wing in the Dutch league.

The Gunners are interested in signing Cody Gakpo from PSV Eindhoven, Mail Online reports. The 22-year-old comes from the PSV youth team and has scored 16 goals and 15 other goals in 37 games this season.

According to the report, Eindhoven officials are ready to let Gakpo go for a suitable fee next summer. The left wing will cost almost 50 million euros. In addition to Arsenal, Liverpool and Barcelona are interested in the 22-year-old. According to Voetbal International , however, the ‘Gunners’ have the best chance of signing.

Gakpo would be and unnecessary expense at this point for Bayern Munich, so Arsenal seems like a better move and fit overall.