With all of Europe’s big clubs now starting to make splashes in the transfer market, Bayern Munich are already back on the beach with their feet up having gotten up early to try out the waves. They made decide to return to the water again, but for now, they’re happy to watch as everyone else fights for prime space.
Bayern have already brought in two new defenders, breaking their transfer record for one as they signed Lucas Hernandez (£0.69) and Benjamin Pavard (£0.75), while young striker Jann-Fiete Arp (£0.75) adds depth up front. With over €100m spent on new arrivals, Bayern need help balancing their squad and balancing their books so will look to offload some players this summer.
Arjen Robben (£0.17) and Franck Ribery (£0.31) looked like possible departures last year but both agreed one-year extensions to stay for the 2018-19 season and add another Bundesliga title to their CVs. This summer marks the end of ‘Robbery’, once the most potent wide duo in world football. However, both are in their mid-30s, so it is time to move on.
Robben has revealed he has a number of options for his next step, and has been linked with a return to the Netherlands. Former club Groningen are a definite option but may not be able to afford the 35-year-old. PSV and Ajax have been mentioned in German newspaper Bild, while his agent has been in contact with Benfica.
Bayern Munich boss Uli Hoeness put a €150 million pricetag on Ribery 10 years ago, but the French winger was allowed to leave on a free transfer this summer. Western Sydney Wanderers coach Markus Babbel wanted to bring Ribery to Australia but was put off by the cost. Qatar’s Al-Sadd Sport Club are on the lookout for a new marquee player after Xavi hung up his playing boots to become their manager.
Rafinha (£0.48) is the third of three veterans to leave for free this summer, but unlike Ribery and Robben, he has chosen his next club. Flamengo are set to announce his signature as the full-back returns to his native Brazil.
After two years on loan in Munich, James Rodriguez’s (£1.94) stint at Bayern has come to an end. The Colombian asked to leave the club with head coach Niko Kovac planning without him for next season. Bayern could have signed him for €42m as part of their loan agreement, but he could cost slightly more if Real Madrid sell him this summer. Real boss Zinedine Zidane is also not a huge admirer of James, so he is likely to be moved on as Madrid look to recoup some cash to spend on new signings after bringing in Luka Jovic for €60m.
James is probably out of the pricerange of many clubs in Europe, but he could find himself playing in Italy next season. Former Bayern Munich head coach Carlo Ancelotti would love to be re-united with the 27-year-old, and could do so at Napoli, especially if they need to replace some exiting stars of their own.
Jerome Boateng and Renato Sanches have both expressed disappointment at a lack of playing time under Kovac, with Boateng likely to leave the club this summer after negotiations with PSG fell through last year. PSG are still interested and Boateng could be a good signing for them or many other clubs as he is could be available for €20m.
Bayern want to keep Sanches as they do not feel they have enough depth in midfield to let him go, but the Portugal international is eager to get more gametime. A loan move would be likeliest, but clubs may not be willing to take a punt on him given his disappointing spell at Swansea in 2017-18.
Backup goalkeeper Sven Ulreich could also look to leave to play more often, while some of Bayern’s young stars might be loaned out to gain experience. Even though Bayern have done a lot of their transfer business already, they still should be busy with their own summer sales!