Bayern Munich is very close to completing the signing of SSC Napoli center back Kim Min-jae, as they’ll be beating out a bevy of clubs across Europe to his signature. Bayern is the club that he wants to join and the official deal being completed is not too far off at this juncture. It’s been reported that Bayern will be activating the €50 million release clause that’s in his current contact with Napoli, who just clinched their first Scudetto in 33 years.
For Bayern, they’re losing Lucas Hernandez to Paris Saint-Germain as the French World Cup winner made it very clear that he did not want stay and accept a new contract offer. Instead, he’ll be joining the reigning Ligue 1 champions for a fee of somewhere between €48 to €50 million euros, but Bayern will be handily replacing him with Min-jae. Unlike Hernandez, Min-jae’s injury history, or lack thereof, bodes quite well for Bayern, as the south Korean international only missed two matches across all competitions for Napoli this past season, and both of those occasions were due to a yellow card suspension.
Per information from Sport1’s Kerry Hau, it is also understood that Bayern does not plan on going for anymore center-backs after the Min-jae deal is done (via @iMiaSanMia). They could, in theory, still get Kyle Walker from Manchester City, who has played in the middle of a back three for both City and England, but he is a right-back by trade. In addition to Hernandez, it’s also expected that Benjamin Pavard will leave this season, who also deputized often at center-back for Bayern.
Before Aston Villa signed him, Bayern was also interested in Villarreal’s Pau Torres, but the Birmingham-based club had a lot of pull for the Spanish international with Unai Emery being Villa boss and having previously managed Villarreal. He was a viable option for Bayern alongside Min-jae, but they are seriously focusing the rest of their transfer efforts on trying to bring in a top-class striker with Harry Kane and Victor Osimhen at the top of the list right now.
There were also be a focus on integrating more homegrown talents at Bayern like Josip Stanisic and Tarek Buchmann, who just recently signed his first professional contract that keeps him at Bayern through 2026.