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Bayern Munich are preparing to make a club-record £50.8 million bid to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal this summer, according to reports in Germany.
The Bundesliga giants are increasing their attempts to sign Chilean forward Sanchez, whose contract with Arsenal expires in 2018.
Citing German source Bild in his report, Joe Short of the Daily Express said: “Bayern are aware that Sanchez will be in high demand this summer, with Paris Saint-Germain also keen on the former Barcelona ace.”
Bayern manager Carlo Ancelotti is said to already be planning how to best fit Sanchez in his team, with Short adding: “The Italian boss is said to have identified Sanchez as the perfect man to play off centre-forward Robert Lewandowski.”
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Putting Sanchez in a role just off the main centre-forward would be a typically smart move from Ancelotti. The Chilean can play on the flanks or through the middle, but he is at his best when deployed in space, away from the congestion common in central areas.
A free role between the midfield and forward lines would take full advantage of Sanchez’s roaming tendencies, as well as his underrated creative contributions. The 28-year-old has scored 24 times and supplied 12 assists for the Gunners in all competitions this season, per WhoScored.com.
It’s no wonder Bayern have been so keen on the gifted South American. The Bundesliga club was reported to have already held talks with the player’s agent after watching him in Arsenal’s FA Cup semi-final win over Manchester City, per SportBild (h/t Alex Richards of the Daily Mirror).
Those reports also revealed how Sanchez sharing the same agent as fellow Chile international, and current Bayern star, Arturo Vidal is seen as being key to Munich’s chances.
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Adding Sanchez would give marquee centre-forward Robert Lewandowski the support he needs.
Thomas Muller’s struggles this season have denied Lewandowski such support. Meanwhile, Ancelotti needs to get Bayern younger on the wings, where 33-year-old Arjen Robben and 34-year-old Franck Ribery still start.
Rafinha Reveals Premier League Offers
Bayern’s Brazilian defender Rafinha has revealed how he has received offers from the Premier League. Speaking to FourFourTwo, the 31-year-old said: “I don’t like to talk about offers—I have managers for that. But it’s true, those offers are real. I have a few offers from Premier League clubs.”
The veteran and versatile defender lauded the quality of the Premier League: “I always follow the Premier League matches. It’s very exciting watching a tournament where six or seven teams can fight for the title. It’s probably the best league in the world.”
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Rafinha also expressed his happiness at Bayern, but the South American has been linked with Arsenal, per the report. It’s not the first time Rafinha has been linked with the Gunners.
In fact, SportBild (h/t Goal’s Tom Maston) reported last April that Arsenal had offered the player a three-year contract. Perhaps Rafinha could be used as a makeweight to help smooth any deal for Sanchez.
It would be a smart ploy from Bayern since there doesn’t seem to be an obvious place for Rafinha in Ancelotti’s squad. His challenge to play will be even tougher next season after the club wrapped up deals for Hoffenheim duo defender Niklas Sule and midfielder Sebastian Rudy back in January.
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This context makes it no surprise Rafinha has talked up a move to England’s top flight.
Rafinha could well leave Bayern for the Premier League, while Sanchez looks increasingly likely to move the other way.