Bayern Munich’s pursuit of RB Leipzig midfielder Konrad Laimer appears to officially be dead.
Like totally dead.
RB Leipzig manager Domenico Tedesco said as much as the coach indicated that he has known for about a month now that Laimer was staying put:
Domenico Tedesco confirms that Konrad Laimer will stay in Leipzig: "It's understandable that Bayern wanted him, but now we've kept him."— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) August 21, 2022
When asked if Laimer is definitely staying, Tedesco added: "That's been clear to me since 4 weeks"
The interesting caveat to this news is that with Laimer out of the mix, Monday’s report about Bayern Munich’s interest in FC Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong might hold a bit of water (how much is debatable — bear with me, though, and humor some rationale as to why it could actually happen):
- Barca needs to unload salary and take any transfer/loan money it can get to register Jules Koundé.
- De Jong has been vilified by his current club regarding his refusal to cut his pay — but has always been on the radar of Bayern Munich.
- Sending De Jong away on loan — as long as Bayern Munich pays his salary — buys time for Barca to either push off a decision on De Jong until next season or give Bayern Munich an option to buy De Jong and take the Dutchman’s salary off the books for good.
- More than anything, though, is this theory: Perhaps the bosses at Säbener Straße are sensing this existing group might be special — and adding a relatively cheap loaner like De Jong could be just the type of insurance piece needed to have the best roster in the world.
It still feels like longshot at this point for Bayern Munich to get De Jong, but there is at least some narrative that could make it conceivable…or is it?
Update: 6:10AM EST — The Germans say nope on this rumor
Once the German journalists dug into to Gerard Romero’s news, they couldn’t fire up Twitter fast enough to kill off the rumor.
Sky’s Florian Plettenberg:
❗️News #DeJong: Still no topic! He won’t join FC Bayern in this window. The club counts on Kimmich & Co. Especially on Gravenberch. They are totally happy with his development. He is a possible starter in the next weeks. @SkySportDE https://t.co/3i1sYAPPJs— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) August 23, 2022
Sport Bild’s Christian Falk:
the renewed rumours about an interest of @FCBayern in Frenkie de Jong this summer are NOT TRUE ❌— Christian Falk (@cfbayern) August 23, 2022
There is nothing like a little game of cat-and-mouse between the Spanish and German media.
Update: 7:05AM EST — Another La Liga journo runs with Bayern/De Jong story
Backing up Romero’s initial report, Gabriel Sans also said Bayern Munich made a late offer to take De Jong on loan:
In the past few hours, Bayern have appeared again in the scene for Frenkie de Jong - trying to put on the table a loan offer with option to buy. Manchester United are not giving up and will also make an attempt for the Dutchman, despite having already signed Casemiro [@gbsans] pic.twitter.com/XTagJ4zCRx— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) August 23, 2022
This...came out of nowhere. Manchester United is said to be keen on Eintracht Frankfurt goalkeeper and Germany international Kevin Trapp:
News #Trapp: Yes, #MUFC is interested & have deposited the interest in Kevin. BILD reported first. Frankfurt is aware of the interest. At this stage: No agreement with the player, no negotiations between the clubs. Eintracht wants to extend his contract. @Sky_Marc @SkySportDE— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) August 22, 2022
Manchester United was also rumored to be interested in Borussia Mönchengladbach starter Yann Sommer as well. Both players are too good to transfer to England just to be an understudy on the Red Devils.
Check out our preview for this weekend’s VfL Bochum matchup, along with a review of Bayern’s Matchday 2 dispatching of VfL Wolfsburg in a hard-fought contest.
There was plenty to talk about. On tap:
- Tanguy Nianzou’s surprise exit and how the defense it setting up for this season.
- A contract extension for sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidžić and how he has evolved as an executive.
- Robert Lewandowski’s tough start for FC Barcelona.
- Leroy Sané’s form has landed him on the B team for training.
- Serge Gnabry’s injury is an opportunity for Kingsley Coman.
- A dive into the Better Call Saul final, my thoughts, why I am a selfish viewer, and potentially a bad person!
Kingsley Coman, Joshua Kimmich, Sadio Mané, and Leroy Sané were all selected by WhoScored.com’s “Bundesliga Team of the Week”:
Meanwhile, Coman and Sané were named to kicker’s “Bundesliga Team of the Week”:
Coman and Hernandez were selected by L’Equipe for the “Best XI of French Players” for this week:
L'équipe type des Français du week-end : Saint-Maximin excellent, Mbappé triple buteur— L'ÉQUIPE (@lequipe) August 22, 2022
Saint-Maximin, Mbappé, Saliba... plusieurs Français ont brillé ce week-end, en France comme dans les autres grands Championnats européens. https://t.co/5DIwiSJc8N pic.twitter.com/wqK8MAp55Q
So...Liverpool had its hands full with Manchester United on Monday and many folks are saying that the absence of Sadio Mané has left a gaping hole in the squad, including former Arsenal FC player Paul Merson.
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — Sadio Mané is a huge loss for Liverpool,” Merson wrote on Sportskeeda (as captured by Sport Bible). “Why sell him for £30 million when you could’ve kept him around for a year and once again fought on all fronts, like they did last Premier League season?”
Bayern Munich are off to a record-breaking start in the league and things look so good it’s almost magical. The combination of the 4-2-2-2 formation and the newfound chemistry between all of Bayern’s forwards makes every single game an unprecedented goal fest. Of course new challenges await over the horizon, with the Champions League group stage draw set to take place later this week.
In this episode, INNN and Samrin discuss:
- Whether the departure of Robert Lewandowski is responsible for the incredible upswing in performances from Bayern Munich this season.
- Why Julian Nagelsmann’s philosophy seems to work better without a true striker in the system.
- How the addition of Sadio Mane has made Bayern’s attack much stronger overall.
- Why this current system wouldn’t work under another coach such as Hansi Flick.
- Thomas Muller’s new playing style in Lewandowski’s absence.
- Did the board let Lewandowski leave ... on purpose?
- Concerns about the defense, and the number of chances conceded in each game.
- A discussion about Champions League groups — who is our preferred opponent and why is it Liverpool FC?
- Our preferred picks from Pot 2 in order. Chelsea, Barcelona, Tottenham, etc.
- A look at Pot 3 and the best teams available — Inter, Napoli, and Salzburg.
- Why an easy team from Pot 4 would be better for Bayern.
- How the rest of the Bundesliga teams might fare in the CL group stages this season.
With Bayern Munich out of the picture (for now) on him, VfB Stuttgart star Borna Sosa could be headed to Atalanta per Sky’s Florian Plettenberg:
❗️Excl. News #Sosa: Verbal agreement with Bergamo! Player said YES & wants to join them. But Atalanta has to sell players. Negotiations have not yet started between the clubs. VfB wants €20m with bonuses. VfB would sell Sosa AND Kalajdzic! @Sky_Marc @DiMarzio @SkySportDE— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) August 22, 2022
Sosa would be a tremendous fit at Bayern Munich, but with Alphonso Davies on the roster, a move would create unnecessary redundancies. At Atalanta, Sosa would figure to stabilize the left flank of the defense, which has not been the same since Germany international Robin Gosens left for Inter Milan.
Bayern Munich continued their outstanding start to the campaign with an unbelievable 7-0 thrashing of VFL Bochum. There were points during the game when I felt sorry for the Ruhr outfit, which looked bereft of ideas. Bayern had 5 different scorers, and the team was sizzling tonight. Everyone played their role to near perfection, barring a shaky start for both Upamecano and Neuer. The latter became his usual self as the game progressed, which may or may not be attributed to the banana he consumed early in the second half.
There were a lot of positives and a lot to discuss, so here’s a synopsis of the major talking points in the podcast:
- The lineups, and Bochum’s tactics and gameplan.
- How Nagelsmann set his team up (taking into account the absences).
- Bayern’s attack and THAT performance.
- Leroy Sane, Kingsley Coman, Sadio Mane, and how the attack clicked.
- Serge Gnabry the super sub.
- That midfield machine.
- Superb defending, plus a clean sheet :)
- #Bananeuer the legend.