Bayern powerless to prevent Lewandowski leaving for Real Madrid, warns Effenberg

Bayern Munich will have to “open the doors” for Robert Lewandowski should the Poland international tell them he wants to leave for Real Madrid, according to Stefan Effenberg.

Lewandowski has been strongly linked with a move to La Liga in recent months, signing with renowned agent Pini Zahavi reportedly in order to make the transfer happen.

As revealed by Goal, Bayern have insisted they see no reason to sell Lewandowski and would see such a move as weakening themselves given the Polish striker is among the finest attackers in world football.

But Effenberg, who enjoyed two spells at Bayern in the 1990s and early 2000s, says they will have to let Lewandowski get his own way if he does tell them he wants out.

“I understand that some other English team is also going for him,” Effenberg told AS. “When Robert says he wants to leave, the club will have to open the doors.

[embedded content]

“What he wants is to win the Champions League and at Bayern he has every chance of doing it.”

Bayern host Madrid in the Champions League semi-final first leg on Wednesday and Effenberg spoke of his admiration for the Spanish side’s centre-back Sergio Ramos, who he believes has been crucial to their successes in recent years.

“I would not have liked to face him,” Effenberg said of Ramos. “I do not lie when I say that Madrid would not have won so many titles without Ramos.

Article continues below

“The same goes for [Toni] Kroos. His signing for Madrid helped him to give the final pass to the world’s elite.

“Ramos, Kroos and Cristiano [Ronaldo] form a backbone that, being one hundred percent, will require Bayern to get the most out of themselves.

“They [Madrid players] are all good. [Dani] Carvajal, for example, he already amazed me when I saw him at Leverkusen, but in Madrid even more so. Cristiano is very good, yes, but they have others too.”


Champions League Betting: Cristiano Ronaldo 5/2 to outscore Robert Lewandowski in Munich

The two highest-scoring Champions League semi-finalists go head-to-head on Wednesday night as Bayern Munich welcome Real Madrid to the Allianz Arena.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s 13 strikes in the final four of the competition are by far the most at this stage, with Robert Lewandowski second in the list with six.

These prolific scorers have a storied history against each other and are offering a market on which forward comes out on top in the first leg.

Latest odds

Robert Lewandowski, Bayern Munich

The online bookmaker has made Lewandowski 7/4 (2.75) to outscore Ronaldo in Munich, whilst the Portuguese is 5/2 (3.50).

Backing them both to score the same amount is 5/4 (2.25), and is something that has occurred in three of the five matches that the pair have faced off in.

More goals for Ronaldo

Ronaldo’s insatiable form in the Champions League this season has seen him net 15 times in the competition, and his streak of scoring in 11 consecutive games (dating back to last season’s final) is a record.

Ronaldo Lewandowski graphic

The 33-year-old also has nine goals against Bayern in his career, including a hat-trick in the semi-final last term, which is the second-most for a player against any opponent in the Champions League – behind his 10 versus Juventus.

Lewandowski to strike

However, Lewandowski is not to be forgotten, and his stunning four-goal salvo in the semi-finals for Borussia Dortmund against Real back in 2013 firmly established him as one of the best strikers in the world.

In fact, his six goals against Los Blancos are the most he has scored against any side in the Champions League, whilst all six of his semi-final strikes have come against Spanish opposition.

 Champions League footer


Transfer news & rumours LIVE: Rose still a Man Utd target

Man Utd still want Rose

Tottenham’s Danny Rose remains a transfer target for Manchester United, the Evening Standard reports.

The England international has struggled for game time since recovering from a serious knee injury, but Jose Mourinho is still keen to sign the full-back.

Additionally, it is said that the Portuguese boss is willing to listen to offers for out of favour defenders Matteo Darmian and Luke Shaw ahead of the new season.

Spurs, meanwhile, have placed Fulham’s Ryan Sessegnon high on their own summer wishlist.

Batshuayi interested in Dortmund talks

Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi is interested in discussing a summer permanent move to Borussia Dortmund, Goal understands.

The Bundesliga’s efforts to secure an option to buy on their loan deal were rejected outright in January by Chelsea, but Batshuayi’s nine goals in 14 games have only strengthened Dortmund’s resolve to make a deal happen.

Chelsea will likely wait until after the World Cup to begin talks and could ask for as much as £50 million, as they aim to profit on the growing value of their loan star.

Read the full story on Goal!

Gazidis wants Arteta to replace Wenger

Arsenal’s chief executive Ivan Gazidis believes Mikel Arteta could be the right man to replace Arsene Wenger at Arsenal, Sky Sports   claims.

Arteta, a former Gunners captain, has been working alongside Pep Guardiola at Manchester City and has seen his stock as a potential manager rise as a result.

Raul Sanllehi, head of football operations at the club, is said to prefer former Barcelona coach Luis Enrique, while head of recruitment Sven Mislintat has eyes for Hoffenheim manager Julian Nagelsmann and Schalke’s Domenico Tedesco.

‘Man Utd were looking at Germany trio’

Manchester United had identified Mats Hummels, Marco Reus and Ilkay Gundogan as potential transfer targets prior to Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure, claims Rene Meulensteen.

Ferguson was stepped down as United manager on the back of a 13th Premier League title triumph, David Moyes was appointed as his successor and attention shifted elsewhere in the recruitment market.

That change in direction led the Red Devils away from three star turns in Germany who were all on the books of Borussia Dortmund at the time.

Read the full story on Goal!

City allow Stones to leave

Manchester City will allow defender John Stones to leave the club this summer, according to  The Sun .

The England international has not started a Premier League game since January having fallen down the pecking order under Pep Guardiola.

Both Arsenal and Liverpool have been touted as potential destinations, with City keen to recoup most of the £47.5 million they spent on the centre-back in 2016.

Man Utd defender to stay at Villa

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is prepared to let Axel Tuanzebe spend another season on loan at Aston Villa, according to The Sun .

Tuanzebe joined Villa on loan in the January transfer window, but has made just five appearances for the Championship club.

However, Mourinho wants Tuanzebe to continue his development at Villa next season, irrespective of whether Steve Bruce’s side clinch promotion to the Premier League.

Fee holding up Rafinha move

Barcelona’s transfer fee demands are holding up a permanent move to Inter for Rafinha, Calciomercato   reports.

The midfielder has stated he is happy in Milan and would like to stay, but the player’s buyout clause of €35 million plus an additional €3m in bonuses is proving an issue for the Serie A club.

The Brazilian is said not to feature in Ernesto Valverde’s plans for the Blaugrana, but sporting director Robert Fernandez is a keen admirer of the 25-year-old and will not settle for a cut-price deal.

Valverde considering Barca future

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde is considering leaving Camp Nou this summer, according to  AS .

Despite guiding the Blaugrana to the Copa del Rey and managing them to the verge of an unbeaten Liga season, the former Athletic boss could yet walk away at the end of his first season in charge.

The 54-year-old is at odds with the Barca board following their quarter-final exit from Champions League and could now walk away.

Messi tells Neymar: Join Man Utd!

Lionel Messi has told former Barcelona team-mate Neymar to join Manchester United this summer, according to  Don Balon .

Neymar is set to leave Paris Saint-Germain and has two offers – one from United and one from Real Madrid.

Messi, though, is keen for the Brazil international not to sign for Barca’s main rivals and instead has advised him to move to Old Trafford.

New Arsenal boss given limited funds

Arsene Wenger’s managerial replacement at Arsenal will only have around £50 million to spend on their squad this summer, according to the  Daily Telegraph .

With Wenger set to step down at the end of the season, the hunt is on for a new coach to take the reins at the Emirates Stadium.

But following the club-record arrivals of Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang over the past 12 months, funds are tight at the Gunners.

West Ham make massive Isco bid

West Ham have had a huge €90 million offer for Isco accepted by Real Madrid, according to  Don Balon .

The Spain international has not always been first choice at Santiago Bernabeu this season and could look to leave this summer.

Manchester City have shown an interest but have not offered anywhere near the same amount as the London Stadium outfit.

Mou to give up De Gea for Ronaldo

Jose Mourinho is willing to use David de Gea as part of a swap deal to bring Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United, according to  Diario Gol .

Mourinho is keen to reunite with Ronaldo, whom he managed at Real Madrid, and is willing to allow De Gea to leave given his goalkeeper’s urge to move to Santiago Bernabeu.

Should Madrid reject that, however, then Paul Pogba could be offered instead of De Gea.

Bale holds Inter talks

Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale has held talks with Inter regarding a move this summer, according to  Don Balon .

The Wales international is set to leave Santiago Bernabeu following a frustrating season with injuries and a lack of form.

And the San Siro outfit want to unite Bale with Mauro Icardi as they look to make a splash both domestically and in Europe once again.

Athletic keen on Llorente reunion

Athletic Club are keen on bringing Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente back to Spain this summer, according to the  Daily Mirror .

The Spain international has struggled to establish himself at Spurs given the form of Harry Kane up front.

And Llorente, who left Athletic for Juventus in 2013, would be open to making the move back to Bilbao.

Leipzig asked for Alexander-Arnold

RB Leipzig were keen to take Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold to Germany back in January, according to  The Times .

The full-back has impressed during his first full season in the first team at Anfield, with some even calling for him to go to the World Cup with England.

And it has been revealed Leipzig asked for the youngster to be included after Liverpool bid to bring Naby Keita to Merseyside at the turn of the year rather than wait until the summer.

Man City close to Jorginho

Manchester City are closing in on a deal for Napoli’s £50 million-rated midfielder Jorginho and are ready to splash the cash on a marquee signing if the possibility presents itself.

Goal understands City want to make just two signings this summer as they look to build on their Premier League-winning campaign. 

They are pursuing a deep-lying midfielder – now likely to be Jorginho – and a forward; the same positions they attempted to strengthen in January.

Read the full story on Goal!

Bayern to block Lewandowski sale

Bayern Munich are set to block Real Madrid’s move for striker Robert Lewandowski this summer.

The Poland international is keen to move on from the Bundesliga champions this summer.

And Madrd see him as an upgrade on Karim Benzema as they aim to bolster their forward line.

Read the full story on Goal!

Liverpool told ‘sack of money’ won’t land Alisson

Liverpool and Real Madrid have been warned by Roma president James Pallotta that “a sack of money” will not be enough to land in-demand goalkeeper Alisson.

Article continues below

The Brazil international has become a much sought-after commodity on the back of his consistent showings for club and country.

But Roma have maintained throughout the regular rounds of transfer talk that they have no intention of selling .

Read the full story on Goal!


‘Goal machine’ Ronaldo is more complete than Messi – Kimmich

Joshua Kimmich is preparing to go up against the world’s most “complete” player in Cristiano Ronaldo when Bayern Munich face Real Madrid.

Bayern host the Champions League holders in Wednesday’s semi-final first leg, seeking revenge for last season’s quarter-final elimination.

Ronaldo scored a hat-trick in the second leg of that tie and they will have to pay him close attention once again, with the Portugal star in remarkable form having scored 15 times in 10 Champions League games this season.

And Bayern youngster Kimmich believes such “insane” goal-scoring exploits make Ronaldo more of an all-round threat than his Barcelona rival Lionel Messi.

“When it comes to goal quotas, Ronaldo is in the lead,” Kimmich told Bild. “Especially with regards to the goals in the Champions League.

Article continues below

[embedded content]

“Messi is a completely different type of player. Ronaldo is perhaps more complete in terms of skills themselves.

“Messi is more a dribbler, Ronaldo the final player. I cannot say this one or that one. I am glad that I am allowed to witness both.

“Such a player as Ronaldo, you can only turn off as a whole team anyway. He is a goal machine, which has an insane goal quota. We have to make sure that he cannot continue his run.”