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Pitch perfect? Bayern Munich tried again to convince Robert Lewandowski and Pini Zahavi to stay

Brazzo may be feeling the pressure to deliver.

Hasan Salihamidžić with his arm around Robert Lewandowski, who looks away, as he leaves the field during a match against Bochum
Lewy doesn’t seem to be feeling it
Photo by Roland Krivec/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

When the Bayern Munich brass took public steps to clear the air with Robert Lewandowski, it was a gesture of acceptance and conciliation. Lewy’s departure seemed to FC Barcelona fait accompli, all the more so with Liverpool star Sadio Mané incoming. But sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidžić is apparently making one last push to convince the incumbent striker to stay.

Brazzo met with both the player and his agent Pini Zahavi in Mallorca last Wednesday, per Sky Sport DE: not with a new contract offer, apparently, but with a pitch for Lewy to fulfill his current contract ending in 2023.

Said Florian Plettenberg: “We hear it was a very valuable and detailed conversation.” Nevertheless, “it remains the same: Lewandowski wants to leave FC Bayern for FC Barcelona.”

Honestly? What could Brazzo have expected? Lewandowski has already agreed to terms with the Catalan club, and the soon-to-be 34-year-old may be looking for the stability of a longer stay for himself and his family. And with Barça’s improved offer on the way, the pressure will be back on Bayern to accede to their player’s wishes — which would be exactly the smooth process that facilitated the Mané signing.

It took a phone call to broker the present uneasy peace between the two camps. If these reports are accurate, Bayern re-asserting a hardline stance would be curious timing, indeed.

It’s curious, too, that this last-ditch effort is following Bayern finalizing terms on the Mané deal. First, it indicates that it would be within the club’s means — and sporting plans — to accommodate both relatively older stars for at least one year. Mané will reportedly earn €20m as well, matching Lewy’s position at the very top of the salary structure. Second, it suggests that Bayern’s striker hunt, including for players previously linked such as Stuttgart’s Saša Kalajdžić, will continue to be on indefinite hold while the Lewy situation sorts out.

Perhaps the most interesting nugget here is that Lewy, Pini, and Brazzo all got face-to-face to hash it out. Oh, to be a fly on that wall! One can imagine Pini telling Brazzo to pound sand and threatening to turn on the heat again. We can assume that’s how it happened.

But no one else was in the room where it happened.

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