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Bavarian Loan Works: AFC Ajax interested in Bayern Munich’s Joshua Zirkzee

Joshua Zirkzee could be involved in a swap deal with Ajax for Ryan Gravenberch and Noussair Mazraoui.

KAA Gent v RSC Anderlecht - Croky Cup Final Photo by Jeroen Meuwsen/BSR Agency/Getty Images

Per a report from SPOX, AFC Ajax is interested in trying to sign Bayern Munich’s Joshua Zirkee, who is still currently on loan at RSC Anderlecht until the end of the season.

Bayern is currently close to signing both Ryan Gravenberch and Noussair Mazraoui from the Dutch club, so it is currently understood that Zirkzee could be used as a part of a potential swap deal. His stint with the Belgian outfit is going far better than his spell with Parma in Italy, as he’s tallied 15 goals and 8 assists from a total of 42 appearances across all competitions.

Earlier this year, Zirkzee all but ruled out a return to Bayern, where he knows he would struggle to find consistent minutes if Robert Lewandowski was to stay with the club this summer. “I get minutes to play here, that was my goal. I don’t think it makes much sense, to return to Bayern after a season in which I played a lot,” Zirkzee said.

Aside from the brief stint in the 2019/20 season under Hansi Flick when Lewandowski was injured, Zirkzee has never had a sustained run in the Bayern starting eleven.

RSC Anderlecht v KAS Eupen - Jupiler Pro League Photo by Joris Verwijst/BSR Agency/Getty Images

On the other side of the token, Sebastian Haller’s name has also been mentioned as a potential Lewandowski replacement if the Polish international does, in fact, leave Bayern this summer. With their heavy interest in Zirkzee, it seems that Ajax is already preparing for Haller’s sale this summer, as both Milan clubs are also interested in addition to Bayern. The former Eintracht Frankfurt striker might not be anywhere near Lewandowski in terms of the quality and value they possess, but he’s still an option nonetheless for Bayern.

Taking everything at surface value, Zirkzee is a powerful bargaining chip for Bayern. They want to complete moves for both Gravenberch and Mazraoui, so including Zirkzee in a swap deal would please both parties. Ideally for Bayern, this swap deal would take place and Lewandowski would sign a contract extension, staying at the club at least beyond this summer. Haller would not be the most ideal replacement should Lewandowski leave for Barcelona, so the former option seems like the best case scenario for Bayern.