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Daily Schmankerl: Real Madrid leaves Arsenal, Tottenham to duke it out for Bayern Munich’s Serge Gnabry; Bayern, Newcastle United battling for Hugo Ekitike?; Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic to Juventus; Carlo Ancelotti to...Canada (!?); and MORE!

Man...Pep Guardiola is going to have a hard time living that one down.

FC Bayern München v Borussia Dortmund - Bundesliga Photo by Simon Hofmann/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty Images

Madrid bails on Gnabry pursuit (The Hard Tackle)

Real Madrid has reportedly bailed out of its pursuit of Bayern Munich’s Serge Gnabry and will leave Arsenal FC and Tottenham Hotspur as the Germany international’s prime suitors:

According to reputed transfer expert Gianluca Di Marzio, as quoted by Defensa Central, Real Madrid will unlikely launch the offensive for Serge Gnabry, with Antonio Rudiger and Kylian Mbappe being their priorities. The Italian journalist further claimed that a move to Arsenal or Tottenham Hotspur could be on the cards for the Bayern Munich forward.

The interest from Real Madrid stems from the rampant uncertainties surrounding the futures of Eden Hazard and Marco Asensio. If the two disgruntled forwards leave Real Madrid, Los Blancos will need to invest in a wide attacker, making Gnabry a viable target.

As for Arsenal, Gnabry’s return could be a step in the right direction for an evolving team that will need a few players closer to their peak years. And with Nicolas Pepe’s Arsenal future up in the air, Gnabry has emerged as an option worth considering for the Gunners.

The Bayern Munich forward is also on Tottenham’s radar, which is hardly surprising, considering Steven Bergwijn could depart from the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in the summer. And according to Gianluca Di Marzio, Arsenal and Spurs will be in contention to sign Gnabry, with Real Madrid unlikely to pursue him in the coming transfer window.

Real Madrid’s priority is to complete the Bosman moves for Antonio Rudiger and Kylian Mbappe, with Di Marzio ruling out Gnabry’s transfer to the Santiago Bernabeu. It will be interesting to see if the 26-year-old German international looks to leave Bayern Munich this summer, bringing Arsenal and Tottenham into the picture.

Pulisic to Juve? (Sport1)

Chelsea FC’s Christian Pulisic could want out of London and Juventus might be willing to give the USMNT star a new home:

A frustrating situation for Christian Pulisic, who may be toying with a change. According to the Mirror, Juventus have their eye on the 23-year-old. Its market value is estimated at 45 million euros.

So far these are just rumours, but they could quickly become concrete if the situation for Pulisic doesn’t change soon.

Bavarian Podcast Works: Preview Show — Bayern Munich vs. VfB Stuttgart (Bavarian Football Works)

Simply put, this game means everything for VfB Stuttgart and absolutely nothing for the Ibiza Bunch...err, Bayern Munich.

I kid, I kid.

I could not care any less about the Ibiza trip, but the Bavarians will have to play much better — and will need to show more life — than they did last week. This is what we have on tap for this episode:

  • A look at where each squad is in the table.
  • A look at the recent form for both squads.
  • Some key players to watch for VfB Stuttgart.
  • Why this match could go a long way in determining if VfB Stuttgart gets relegated.
  • The after-effects of some youngsters being left out of the squad last week.
  • A guess at who Julian Nagelsmann might start (Hint: This could be a very veteran-laden lineup to start the match).
  • A prediction on the match.

Bayern leads on Lukaku (The Chelsea Chronicle)

Reports out of England state that Bayern Munich is the leader in the clubhouse to get Romelu Lukaku — but it remains to be seen if the Bavarians have any use for the Chelsea FC man now that they have repeatedly stated that they will not sell Robert Lewandowski this summer:

Bayern Munich is reportedly the number one destination for Romelu Lukaku permitted he cuts ties with Chelsea at the end of the season. According to TEAMtalk, the Bundesliga champions trump Inter and AC Milan in terms of teams who could snap up the struggling striker over the summer.

Barcelona have apparently made contact with the player’s agent, whilst Goal recently named AC Milan as a potential home of refuge for the centre-forward. However, TEAMtalk have waded in by naming Bayern as the club most likely to give Lukaku a lifeline after falling to his knees at Chelsea. The Bavarians are gearing up to possibly lose Robert Lewandowski in the next transfer window.

Bayern using Dumfries as contingency plan? (Football Italia)

Should something happen at the last minute with Ajax’s Noussair Mazraoui, Bayern Munich might have Denzel Dumfries holstered and ready to go:

Inter could be willing to sell Denzel Dumfries in the summer in case of an offer matching their valuation.

La Gazzetta dello Sport claim that since Inter signed the Dutchman for a fee of €12.5 million and to sell him, they would need about €30-€35 million in the summer. If an offer of that value is made, they would let the right wing-back leave.

Multiple clubs like him because of the relatively low asking price of a player who has a reputation in Europe. While Tottenham are interested, Bayern are also keeping an eye on the Dutchman. But they would only make a move if their move for Noussair Mazraoui falls through.

Inter would also have to identify a replacement before selling the player and while Ivan Perisic is expected to sign a new deal, he is seen as an option for the left wing-back role. If a club knocks on the door for Dumfries, Inter would then look for replacements and Nahuel Molina from Udinese, Dodo from Shakhtar Donetsk, Jonathan Clauss from Lens or Nordi Mukiele from Leipzig can be the players which can be considered.

Bayern’s move could affect Perisic (Sempre Milan)

If — and this is a big if — Bayern Munich made a move for Denzel Dumfries, 2019/20 treble-winner Ivan Perisic could shift out to play wing-back:

Ivan Perisic could be used at right wingback for Inter if Denzel Dumfries is sold in the summer, amid interest in the Dutchman from Bayern Munich.

This according to today’s print edition of Turin-based newspaper Tuttosport, who claim that the Nerazzurri would use the 33-year-old’s versatility to fill in the slot on the right in the event that Dumfries is sold.

Dumfries’s form this season has meant that he has started to attract significant transfer interest, with the German champions particularly keen on his signature.

The 26-year-old could be seen as the most expendable of the big name players by the Nerazzurri, who will have to bring in cash this summer with a major sale. In the event that Dumfries departs, Perisic could be used as a stopgap solution given that the Croat’s versatility and two-footedness mean that he can play on the right, while Robin Gosens would then become the main starter on the left.

Bayern eyeing Ekitike? (Shields Gazette)

Bayern Munich is rumored to be challenging Newcastle United for Reims striker Huge Ekitike:

Newcastle United target Hugo Ekitike has been linked with a move to Bayern Munich this summer with 90 Football (via GetFootballNewsFrance) reporting that the German giants are leading the race for the 19-year-old’s signature.

The Magpies attempted to sign Ekitike in January but the player opted to remain at Reims for the remainder of the 2021-22 season.

He has scored 10 goals in 24 matches for the French club in all competitions this season but has had his campaign cut short due to a hamstring injury.

Now Reims are looking to cash-in on the young striker for around £33million this summer, with president Jean-Pierre Caillot stating: “In Hugo’s case, he would waste time staying with us.

Ancelotti to...Canada??? (ESPN)

Carlo Ancelotti’s magical season at Real Madrid continued yesterday when his squad battled all the way back from a two-goal deficit (on aggregate) in the 90th minute — and then went on to win in extra time.

The former Bayern Munich boss might actually be thinking of bolting from Los Blancos after this campaign and moving on to coach the Canadian national team:

Ancelotti has won a joint-record three Champions League titles in a head-coaching career that dates back to 1995 and has seen him manage a host of European giants, including Juventus, AC Milan, Chelsea, Paris Saint-Germain and Madrid.

He has never coached a national team, however. And Ancelotti said he could be tempted by that prospect, with the Canada job holding a particular interest. Ancelotti’s wife Mariann Barrena McClay was born in Canada and the pair own a home in Vancouver.

“Certainly not for this World Cup. World Cup 2026, why not? I’d love to, sure. Canada has done very well.”