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Daily Schmankerl: Bayern Munich a shark circling FC Barcelona?; Leroy Sané to Liverpool? Eh...maybe not; Does Xabi Alonso “dream” of Liverpool gig?; PSG to get new stadium?; Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United eyeing Dutchman; + MORE!

Tension is building for Bayern Munich vs. Bayer Leverkusen…

FC Bayern München Training Session Photo by M. Donato/FC Bayern via Getty Images

Romano can’t see Sané-to-LFC move (CaughtOffside)

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano said that he saw the rumors linking Bayern Munich star Leroy Sané to Liverpool FC, but the journalist does not think there is much merit to them:

Liverpool have been linked again with a transfer interest in Bayern Munich winger Leroy Sané, and Fabrizio Romano has addressed those rumours in the latest edition of his Daily Briefing column.

Speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside for the piece, Romano explained that Sané now has a new agent, so it should soon be time for him to discuss a new contract with Bayern, with the transfer news expert seemingly not at all convinced by the links with Liverpool.

The Reds will surely be making changes to their squad soon as they prepare for life under a new manager, with Jurgen Klopp recently announcing that he’ll be stepping down at the end of the season. Still, that means Liverpool have to get their new sporting director in, as that will then be crucial to deciding the next manager and subsequent decisions on transfers both in and out of the club.

Sané makes sense as the kind of player LFC might want to have on their books, but for now it seems Romano thinks there’s not much to this story.

“Sane has new agent now, so it will be time to discuss his contract situation at Bayern again and with new person in charge soon,” Romano said. “Discussions will take place and the situation will be clarified. However, I don’t know where Liverpool links are coming from as they don’t have a director nor a manager in place for next season, and these appointments will be crucial before deciding transfer targets.”

Sharks circling? (ESPN)

Is there blood in the water?

Bayern Munich seems to think so.

With FC Barcelona struggling financially, the Bavarians could be seeking to take advantage of the Catalans and grab defender Ronald Araújo next summer:

Bayern Munich are ready to step-up their interest in Barcelona centre-back Ronald Araújo, according to Sport.

It is reported that the Bundesliga champions have already set-up a strategy to land the 24-year-old, with an offer expected to be in the region of €100 million.

While the Uruguay international is a key player for the LaLiga club, Bayern believes that Barca will have no choice but to accept the proposal to help their current financial situation.

Bayern manager Thomas Tuchel sees Araujo as a vital part of his future project, and the Allianz Arena hierarchy are prepared to make him their marquee signing this summer on a contract that could be “more than double” what the Blaugrana are prepared to offer him.

The defender, whose representatives have already been contacted by Die Roten, has made 25 appearances across all competitions this season and it looks as though Barca could soon face a difficult dilemma regarding his future.

Per RAC1 (as captured by 90Min.com), Barca might need to sell Araújo to really kickstart balancing its books — but even a potential nine figure transaction might not be enough to make things right:

Barcelona may have to shift multiple key players this summer in order to balance the books, and a proposed €100m sale of Ronald Araujo may not be enough on its own to take the club out of the red.

Bavarian Podcast Works: Preview Show — Bayer Leverkusen vs. Bayern Munich (Bavarian Football Works)

Bayern Munich vs. Bayer Leverkusen...it is finally that time.

If you were looking for a bigger match in the Bundesliga this season, you will not find it. The first place and second place teams are set to battle in a match that will have a massive effect on the league standings.

Why wait any long to get talking on this one? Let’s take a look at what we have on tap for this Preview Show:

  • A look at where each team is in the table.
  • The multitude of subplots between these two teams.
  • Some thoughts on Bayern Munich’s injury and absence situation, plus why this week will present Thomas Tuchel with some very, very difficult decisions for his starting XI.
  • An attempt to figure out Tuchel’s lineup for the game — and why common sense probably will not prevail.
  • A prediction on the match.

Alonso “dreams” of LFC gig (Football Transfers)

Bayer Leverkusen coach Xabi Alonso could be lining up his next job...at least in his head.

Former Bayern Munich and German national team star Bastian Schweinsteiger thinks Alonso is headed to the Premier League:

Bastian Schweinsteiger believes that Xabi Alonso is keen to become Liverpool’s next coach. The Reds are looking for a successor to Jurgen Klopp, who surprisingly announced in January that he will depart Liverpool at the end of the current campaign. Whoever comes in to replace the German has some massive shoes to fill and there aren’t many out there who seem ready for this challenge.

One of the favourites to replace Klopp is beloved former Reds star Xabi Alonso. The Spaniard is doing a brilliant job with Bayer Leverkusen, sitting top of the Bundesliga and masterminding a victory over a very good Stuttgart side in the DFB-Pokal quarter-final on Tuesday to keep up his club’s invincible record this season.

The former Bayern and Man Utd midfielder revealed that he would not be shocked to see Alonso take over at Liverpool, echoing what another ex-teammate, Claudio Pizarro, recently told FootballTransfers.

Speaking on ARD, Schweinsteiger said: “I know Xabi and I believe that it is his big dream to coach Liverpool one day. I certainly think it’s possible that he will move to Liverpool in the summer.”

“I want him to stay in the Bundesliga for a bit longer because he is a godsend for the Bundesliga. Were it not for Leverkusen being so good, Bayern would already be miles ahead in terms of points. Then the situation would be different. But because Leverkusen are so good, we have a title race.”

Uzun update (@Plettigoal)

FC Nürnberg youngster Can Uzun has become one of the most popular transfer targets in Germany and now it looks like there is some clarity regarding his status:

Bavarian Podcast Works — Weekend Warm-up Podcast: Season 3, Episode 31 (Bavarian Football Works)

IT’S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN!

Okay, now that you have Europe cued up, you are officially ready for the massive Bundesliga tilt between Bayern Munich and Bayer Leverkusen.

If that is not enough, let’s do a little more talking about the match, plus a lot more on this week’s edition of the Bavarian Podcast Works — Weekend Warm-up Podcast. Here is what we have on tap for this episode:

  • There is an excitement and tension building up for Bayern Munich vs. Bayer Leverkusen.
  • Frans Krätzig set off for FK Austrian Wien.
  • The rumors linking Bayern Munich to FC Barcelona’s Ronald Araújo could actually be legitimate, while Leroy Sané probably won’t be going to Liverpool.
  • Why the emergence of Aleksandar Pavlović matters.
  • Sky ran a fan poll to pick Germany’s starting XI...do you agree?

PSG angling for new stadium? (90Min.com)

Ah, something that American fans are all too familiar with. A team/club working over a city for a favorable stadium deal.

Extortion at its finest.

Paris Saint-Germain could be looking to move out of the Parc des Princes:

Paris-Saint Germain are sick of the stalemate surrounding their prospective purchase of the Parc des Princes and, following the latest move by Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo to shut down any sale, it is now more likely than not that PSG will move home.

Having first started discussions to own the Parc des Princes eight years ago, and following a recent 18-month public impasse over trying to buy their current home, 90min understands the French champions are now actively planning for alternative sites. Their preference is to do this as fast as is reasonably possible.

Arctos Sports Partners, who now own a stake of up to 12.5% in PSG, view a world-class stadium as a minimum requirement and made this clear during investment talks. They are helping fund all infrastructure costs at the club, and sources close to the private equity firm reveal they’d like clarity on PSG’s long-term home before the end of 2024.

Hidalgo recently insisted the Parc des Princes won’t be sold to PSG under any circumstances. “There will be no sale of the Parc des Princes,” she told Ouest-France. “It is the heritage of the Parisian people. The subject is closed.”

Of course, there are city politics at play (aren’t there always?), but PSG — which does not own Parc des Princes — wants a €500 million upgrade or it wants to move along:

Instead, PSG want urgent and modern upgrades done to the Parc des Princes if they are to stay, at an estimated cost of €500m. But they are not prepared to pay for these if still only tenants and not owners. The current lease expires in 2043 and PSG will only invest in the stadium’s infrastructure if they own it, having already spent around €85m on its maintenance to date.

PSG value the Parc des Princes between €80m and €100m and it is understood that ballpark was determined using Hidalgo’s own property valuers. Yet Hidalgo – despite her most recent ‘not-for-sale’ stance, which PSG argue has been inconsistent – has quoted numbers as high as €300m.

If PSG were to move, it wants an arena that can hold 75,000 fans. If the club does elect to move, a purchase of Stade Sebastien Charlety, which houses Paris FC, could be undertaken. With that, PSG would be buying the land, knocking down Stade Sebastien Charlety, and building a new stadium. Another possibility is Paris La Defense Arena.

United, Spurs wants Koopmeiners (Football Transfers)

Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are both eager to bring in Atalanta midfielder Teun Koopmeiners:

Both Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are keen on securing the arrival of Teun Koopmeiners, according to Italian media.

The Atalanta midfielder has been prominently linked with the likes of Liverpool and Juventus for some time. The latter club, however, are said to have dropped out of the race by now because the prospect of a bidding war with these three English superpowers is too much of a deterrent.

Bavarian Podcast Works — Flagship Show: Season 6, Episode 30 (Bavarians Football Works)

So Bayern Munich won against Gladbach, and head into a critical week where the team will look to overturn the two point deficit on Bayer Leverkusen. Thomas Tuchel has stumbled into a formula that works, but will he stick with it? And how will the winter signings impact the outcome of the season?

In this episode, INNN and Schnitzel discuss the following:

  • A full roundup of the winter transfer window now that all the signings have been secured.
  • Did Bayern Munich panic buy because of injuries?
  • Has Thomas Tuchel found his best XI? Will he stick to it?
  • Is Leroy Sané back in a rut? Should Bayern Munich consider moving on from him in the summer?
  • Why does Thomas Tuchel refuse to choose his best XI?
  • Is Aleksandar Pavlović the future of the midfield position at Bayern Munich? What does this mean for Joshua Kimmich?
  • How will Tuchel tackle the game against Bayer Leverkusen? What is his coaching philosophy?

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