Bayern Munich believe they have finalised an agreement to take Konrad Laimer to the Allianz Arena, sources have told 90min.
Bayern made a summer bid for RB Leipzig’s star midfielder, who is in the final year of his contract, but could not agree terms and they instead landed Ajax’s Ryan Gravenberch.
Laimer has since emerged as a target for Liverpool who were considering a move for him in the New Year, but the Premier League side have now learned from representatives around the deal that the player does indeed want to move to Munich.
The 25-year-old Austrian, who has just recovered from a knee injury, was annoyed at the summer move to Bayern collapsing, but he knew the issue was on both sides and did not hold that against the Bundesliga champions.
90min has been told that the interest from England over the past 12 months, firstly from Manchester United and then Liverpool, had turned his head but his heart was always set on a move to Bayern.
Now Bayern believe terms are agreed and they will seal his signature on a pre-contract, which would in theory see him moving to Munich on a five-year deal in the summer.
However, Bayern do have an interest in taking Laimer in January, but that would need Leipzig’s agreement.
When is the Winter Update released?
The January transfer window has closed for Europe’s top leagues and now Football Manager players are eagerly awaiting the chance to take charge of their new-look teams.
Every year, Football Manager releases a major update to refresh squads and allow players to start a new save with accurate, up-to-date transfers, and it’s just a matter of time before Football Manager 2023 follows suit.
Here’s what we know about the Winter Update.
The primary focus of the update is transfers. Every deal that has gone through since the release of the game earlier this season will be included, so Chelsea fans will have almost an entirely new game to enjoy after their record-breaking spend.
The fun doesn’t stop there, however, with the update also including manager departures and changes to player abilities and potentials to reflect the progress of the real players on the pitch.
There is no set date for the release of the update, with Football Manager representatives regularly telling players that it will be ready when it’s ready.
The FM22 update came on February 24, four days later than the release in 2021 but a week sooner than FM20, which ticked over into March.
Importantly, this is a ‘winter update’ and not a ‘January update’, as it takes into account the transfer windows around the world which do not shut on January 31.
While most windows shut at the end of January, some remain open for a few more weeks. For example, teams in Switzerland have until February 15 and both Bulgaria and Romania can do business until February 22.
A major release usually comes towards the end of February, with a small refresher often released in March to add in the closure of the few windows which drag out until then.
Arsenal eye Hudson-Odoi; Man Utd’s Tielemans bid
90min rounds up the latest transfer news, rumours and gossip circulating around the world…
Arsenal are tracking the progress of Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi, who is expected to be sold by the Blues once his loan with Bayer Leverkusen comes to an end in the summer. (The Guardian)
Another Chelsea player, left-back Ben Chilwell, is being lined up for a big-money move to Manchester City after the departure of Joao Cancelo to Bayern Munich. (The Times)
Real Madrid have been saving money for their pursuit of Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham and are prepared to throw everything they have at the England international in the summer. (AS)
Following Bellingham from Dortmund to Real Madrid could be Germany forward Karim Adeyemi, who has also been identified as a summer target. (Defensa Central)
Manchester United pursued a January move for Leicester’s Youri Tielemans after news of Christian Eriksen’s injury, but the Belgian was valued too highly by his current club and so United went for Marcel Sabitzer instead. (Sky Sports)
A striker is among Man Utd‘s top priorities for the summer, with a bid for £70m-rated Juventus striker Dusan Vlahovic on the agenda. (Rudy Galetti)
Listen now as Scott Saunders hosts Graeme Bailey and Toby Cudworth to discuss why Joao Cancelo looks set to join Bayern Munich on loan from Man City, Arsenal’s ongoing pursuit of Moises Caicedo & the futures of Pedro Porro, Enzo Fernandez, Youri Tielemans and more.
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Liverpool were keen to sign Ghana winger Kamaldeen Sulemana in January before his Deadline Day switch to Southampton, but Jurgen Klopp’s side could reignite their interest in the summer if he settles in the Premier League. (El Nacional)
Tottenham are looking to bolster in defence in the summer and are interested in Crystal Palace’s Marc Guehi. (football.london)
Paris Saint-Germain declined to pay over €10m to sign Inter centre-back Milan Skriniar in January and will instead wait until the summer to sign him on a free transfer. (La Gazzetta dello Sport)
In an attempt to replace Skriniar, Inter made a Deadline Day move for Bayern Munich‘s Benjamin Pavard but saw their approach knocked back. (L’Equipe)
Barcelona have offered a new one-year contract extension to Sergi Roberto, with their proposal also including another 12-month extension clause based on appearances. (Mundo Deportivo)
The best signings of the January transfer window
The winter World Cup added an extra dimension to the usually monotonous January transfer window.
While teams across Europe are still strapped for cash in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, clubs from the Premier Super League took full advantage of their overseas competitors’ financial woes.
Thus, much of the business that took place in the recently closed transfer window concerned clubs from the English top flight as cash was splashed all over the country, up and down the division.
Here are 90min’s top ten transfers of the 2023 January transfer window.
Manuel Neuer’s injury could’ve derailed Bayern’s stuttering campaign with the unreliable Sven Ulreich poised to deputise in the great goalkeeper’s absence.
However, the German giants were never going to let that scenario play out, and they instead moved quickly to bring in an emergency replacement.
As contingency plans go, the signing of Sommer may well be the best solution Bayern could’ve hoped for. The Swiss stalwart has long been considered as one of the Bundesliga finest shot-stoppers and his proficiency between the sticks means FC Hollywood will not miss their skipper too much.
For so long, Arsenal seemed destined to secure the signing of a player that may or may not be on this list a little later on, but they were pipped to the post by their London rivals.
That forced Edu Gaspar into action, and an alternative was quickly sounded out. A deal for the disgruntled Trossard was easy enough to pull off, and the Belgian is certainly not the worst Plan B in the world.
He provides much-needed attacking depth in forward areas as Arsenal go in search of their first Premier League title since 2004. The winger’s versatility will be appreciated by Mikel Arteta, as will his directness in possession and ability to finish with both feet.
“Who cares if we’ve got one of the world’s very best right-backs knocking about, let’s go and sign a leading teenage talent anyway,” Todd Boehly said, probably.
Gusto joined Chelsea just a couple of days before the deadline and has since been loaned back to Lyon for the remainder of the season. Thus, Blues supporters will have to wait a while until they see one of their many shiny new toys in action.
This is a signing that will eventually garner plenty of excitement at Stamford Bridge. The young Frenchman has the potential to blossom into one of the world’s very best right-backs.
Gusto’s as dynamic as they come; a player that gets supporters on their feet once he advances into the final third.
When was the last time Leicester had a competent defence? God, it feels like forever. Where have Robert and big Wes been?
Anyway, Leicester went a long way to fixing their defensive issues by signing World Cup hero Souttar from Stoke on deadline day. It’s not a glamorous move, but one that could prove to be mightily astute.
Souttar is a proper no-nonsense defender, but he also boasts the attributes of your archetypal modern-day centre-half. A move to the Premier League seemed inevitable following his impressive campaign in Qatar, and it’s Leicester who snapped him up.
What happened to Bournemouth at the end of the January transfer window? Matias Vina, Hamed Traore and Ilya Zabarnyi! That’s some conclusion.
How the Cherries have been able to snag a player of Zabarnyi’s talent is remarkable. This is a guy that has excelled in major tournaments for his country and looked at home in the Champions League.
This is a stellar bit of business and the club’s work in January could go a long way to staving off the threat of relegation during the second half of the season.
The addition of talented young centre-back Badiashile has got lost in the wilderness in west London given Chelsea’s transfer activity in the wake of the Frenchman’s arrival.
Nevertheless, Badiashile emerged as one of Europe’s most exciting defensive talents at Monaco and the Blues will think they’ve snagged the 21-year-old at a bargain price (£35m) given his potential.
Badiashile has the potential to be a cornerstone of Graham Potter’s Chelsea project.
Finally, a break from the Premier League. Although, there were several English clubs interested in signing Angers midfielder Ounahi.
The young Moroccan rose to prominence at the end of 2022 as he enjoyed a stellar World Cup campaign with the Atlas Lions. The elegant Ounahi starred in Morocco’s journey to the semi-finals.
A January move beckoned for the 22-year-old, and he had multiple options at his disposal. However, he opted to remain in Ligue 1 and join Igor Tudor’s Marseille, who had just sold Gerson to Flamengo.
It’s another stepping stone for the midfielder, who may well be on the move once more should his World Cup form perpetuate in the French top flight.
It was on, off, and then back on again.
For a while, it seemed like Tottenham wouldn’t appease Antonio Conte by bringing in Pedro Porro, but the Lilywhites finally secured their man following arduous and complex negotiations with Sporting CP.
It’s a move that has garnered plenty of excitement in N17, with Porro shining against Spurs in Sporting’s two Champions League group stage clashes back in the autumn. The wing-back is an excellent technician; one that could transform Conte’s build-up while adding some much-needed quality from wide areas in the final third.
Overall, this move resembles Inter’s deal for Achraf Hakimi in 2020 which catapulted Conte’s project in Milan. The Italian will be hoping that Porro has a similar impact.
Chelsea moved with the utmost ruthlessness to snatch Mudryk from under Arsenal’s nose. The Blues were forced to pay a mammoth fee, one that could reach £100m if certain bonuses are paid, but this kid looks like a superstar in the making.
His brief cameo at Anfield filled supporters with hope moving forward, and there’s genuine belief that 22-year-old Mudryk could salvage Chelsea’s bleak 2022/23 campaign.
The winger showed off his destructive talent in the Champions League earlier this season, and he’s poised to take the Premier League by storm once the Blues return to action.
While there had been murmurs of discontent from Joao Cancelo’s camp, this was a move that surprised absolutely everybody.
The Portuguese full-back had become a bit-part player for Pep Guardiola after the World Cup and his frustrations over a lack of game time reportedly culminated in a ‘training ground bust-up’ between player and coach before the FA Cup clash with Arsenal.
So here we are.
While some have questioned City’s decision to let a talent like Cancelo, who played such a key role in their title success last season, depart, nobody is second-guessing Bayern’s willingness to secure the player on an initial loan deal until the summer.
Cancelo can only be described as a unicorn. He can perform a variety of functions and do almost everything with the ball at his feet.
The 28-year-old may well be the spark Bayern need following an indifferent run of form.
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