Bayern sporting director plays down talk of Lewandowski and Barcelona

‘Our position is clear’: Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic ‘expects’ Robert Lewandowski to return to training despite Barcelona interest… as he insists new signing Sadio Mane is not replacing the striker or Serge Gnabry

  • Robert Lewandowski is keen on a move to Barcelona as he seeks a fresh start
  • Bayern Munich though are determined to keep hold of their Polish striker 
  • The club have just confirmed the signing of Sadio Mane from Liverpool
  • Lewandowski is contracted with the Bundesliga champions until next summer 

Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic is keeping a tough stance on the future of Robert Lewandowski, stating that he expects to see the Polish striker back in training on July 12.

Lewandowski has been strongly linked with a move to Barcelona, with reports that the Catalan giants could launch a £43million offer for their number one summer target. 

As reported by German publication Bild, Bayern’s sporting director has insisted that the club has a clear position on his future, and that new signing Sadio Mane has not been brought in to replace him.

Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski is keen on a move to Barcelona as he seeks a fresh start 

Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has shut down talks of a move to the Catalan side

‘Our position is clear: Robert has a contract until the summer of 2023,’ insisted Salihamidzic.

When asked about the reports suggesting Barcelona are ready to make an offer for Lewandowski, he added: ‘I’m not thinking about that. I’m expecting to see Robert in training at Sabener Strasse on July 12.’

The Bundesliga side confirmed the £35.1million signing of Mane from Liverpool on Wednesday, following six successful years at Anfield.

Similar to Lewandowski, the future of winger Serge Gnabry is also up in the air.

The 26-year-old, is also contracted with the German side until the summer of 2023, and has been linked with a move away.

Salihamidzic has insisted new signing Sadio Mane is not a replacement for Lewandowski

Salihamidzic though insists Mane is not a replacement for either Lewandowski or Gnabry.

He said: ‘We signed Sadio to increase the competition in our team. We weren’t happy with our Champions League exit against Villarreal. We want to strengthen the fight for spots in our team.

‘The signing of Mané will reshuffle the cards for every attacking player. We never thought about having to let a player go when we signed Sadio.’

Lewandowski, 33, who scored 50 goals in 46 matches for Bayern last season, wants a fresh challenge after growing disillusioned with his life at the Allianz Arena.

It was reported over the weekend that Lewandowski turned down the chance to join Chelsea, suggesting Barcelona is his destination of choice.

Mane is also not seen as a replacement for Serge Gnabry who has also been linked elsewhere

Barcelona have made Lewandowski their number one priority signing in the summer window

Last week, Barcelona members voted in favour of the club selling off part of its retail arm, Barcelona Licensing and Merchandising [BLM], and part of its future TV rights revenue, to raise cash to boost Xavi’s squad this summer.

The sale of 49.9 per cent of BLM was voted through by 568 in favour, 65 against, and 13 abstentions.

The sale of up to 25 per cent of the TV rights for 25 years was given the green light by 494 voting members in favour, with 62 against and again 13 abstentions.

President Joan Laporta said the deals could raise between £512m and £598m, something which would aid the Catalan giants in their pursuit of Lewandowski.

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