Bayern Munich admit they have made their first move to sign RB Leipzig centre-back Dayot Upamecano in the summer transfer window.
Upamecano, 22, is one of the hottest properties in European football. His displays at the heart of the Leipzig defence have won him admirers in a number of countries.
Both Liverpool and Manchester United have been linked with the France international. It was reported earlier this week that the Red Devils were at the front of the queue for his signature.
Die Roten Bullen have already made it clear he will not be leaving this month. And a fee of €42.5m should be enough to land him during the summer months.
That is his reported release clause and there are many clubs around who appear willing to pay that sum. The player will have a choice to make, with United early favourites but Bayern now showing their hand.
The Bavarians’ sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has now started the ball rolling. Talks have begun although there is still some way to go in negotiations for his signature.
“We are dealing with the player,” he told Sky. “We have had very good, professional talks with his representatives. We’ll see what happens in this regard.”
Bild are now reporting that Bayern have usurped United as favourites to sign the man with three France caps. They first emerged as serious suitors last week when chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge opened up about the player.
He admitted that the Bundesliga giants need new defenders and will act accordingly to improve the squad.
“We will of course deal with it, not only with this player, but in principle with all the positions where we want and need to do something,” he said. “It’s too early for something like that (transfer), he’s still a Leipzig player at least until the end of the season.
“But it’s common knowledge that he has a clause in his contract.”
Rojo set to depart
Upamecano may arrive at Old Trafford if United can beat Bayern to the punch but Marcos Rojo’s days are numbered. Argentinian centre-back Rojo is nursing a calf injury in his homeland but has trained with Boca Juniors.
United chief Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said on Friday that it is “likely” that Rojo will return to Argentina. He has not kicked a ball all campaign and has barely featured over the past few seasons.
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