It’s difficult from the outside looking in to determine just what, exactly, the relationship between Robert Lewandowski and Bayern Munich currently is, if there even still is a relationship at all. “My story at FC Bayern is over” were the stern words straight from the striker’s mouth during a Poland press conference last week ahead of their Nations League match against Wales and he’s made it clear that he wants to push for a move away from Bayern this summer. Presumably, Barcelona is the preferred destination for Lewandowski, but they’re currently have a bit of a financial conundrum as they would have to sell players to be able to afford funding a Lewandowski transfer.
Lothar Matthäus has been rather outspoken with his opinions surrounding Bayern’s handling of Lewandowski’s contract. They knew his contract was expiring next summer, but still touted the idea of trying to sign Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund, which is something Lewandowski didn’t take too kindly too. Of course, he’ll now be joining Manchester City, but that’s besides the fact. Matthäus held the belief that Bayern’s front office should’ve been proactive and engaging in open discussions with Lewandowski’s situation far sooner despite the fact that they are still financially recovering from financial losses from the coronavirus pandemic.
The sheer amount of players that needed to have their contracts negotiated at Bayern this season as the summer transfer window approaches has not made the Lewandowski situation any easier. Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, Thomas Muller, and Manuel Neuer have all signed new deals, but there’s also growing uncertainty with Serge Gnabry’s future. For Lewandowski, in a recent interview with kicker, Matthäus said that, as the club’s top scorer and best player, he should’ve been treated differently than the other players. “I understand Lewy, who deserved to be treated differently. He is a two-time world footballer and has scored well over 300 goals for Bayern: I deal differently with someone like that,” he sympathized.
A few seasons ago, Lewandowski’s agent was shopping him around to Real Madrid and the player himself had criticized Bayern’s inability to sign top class talents, but that was still not enough not to convince him to eventually sign a contract extension at Bayern. He certainly did not like the fact that Bayern had been pursuing Haaland without having opened discussions with him first, which is something Matthäus feels was the wrong move from Bayern’s front office. “I understand the disappointment with Lewy. I think Lewy missed being talked to openly. Bayern definitely made an effort for Haaland, not just informed him. His advisor Pini Zahavi is certainly no small caliber, on the other hand I understand the disappointment with Lewy. With such a mess you do not have to wonder that he no longer has any desire,” he explained.
As far as an outcome for this summer, Matthäus sees Lewandowski leaving as the most probable scenario to unfold. “It will come to the separation, that can no longer go well. Many players realize that the atmosphere at FC Bayern has changed and is no longer as good as it used to be,” he stressed.