It wasn’t quite as prolonged as and dramatic as when Bayern Munich finally signed Leroy Sane from Manchester City, but the back-and-forth Bayern went through with Borussia Monchengladbach to land goalkeeper Yann Sommer this past winter packed its own dose of drama. The transfer narrative seemed to shift gears multiple times per week, but in the end, Bayern was able to bring in the man they wanted to act as Manuel Neuer’s replacement for the remainder of the season.
Sommer has accepted the fact that he will have to compete with Neuer for the number one keeper spot at Bayern once the latter returns from his broken leg and is fully fit. That was a condition that was perhaps off-putting to other potential candidates that were linked with Bayern. To add, Neuer’s recovery is reportedly on schedule, and he’s always maintained the belief that he’ll be ready for Bayern’s pre-season come July 1st.
Sommer’s relationship with Neuer dates back to when they were Bundesliga rivals. “We see each other almost every day and have very good contact. We’ve already known each other before, we often played against each other,” he recently told kicker (via @iMiaSanMia).
Sommer has often been the talisman of ‘Gladbach, Bayern’s bogey team, so much so that he set a record for saves in a single Bundesliga match in the two sides’ 1-1 draw in the Hinrunde. Since he’s joined Bayern, Sommer has recorded a total of four clean sheets, which is one more than he had recorded with ‘Gladbach this season prior to joining Bayern across all competitions.
Sommer’s exactly the solution that Bayern needed despite the club’s front office remaining adamant during their Neuer-replacement search that they didn’t want the keeper they signed to just be a stop gap, but rather, a long-term option. It’s an open secret that Neuer and Sommer will be competing for minutes when the former is back fit and healthy and it will remain to be seen how many minutes the non-starter will wind up getting.