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Bayern agree Lewandowski move to Barcelona

By AFP - Jul 16,2022 - Last updated at Jul 16,2022

Bayern Munich’s striker Robert Lewandowski is pictured during the German first division Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Munich and VfB Stuttgart in Munich on May 8 (AFP photo by Christof Stache)

BERLIN — Bayern Munich confirmed on Saturday they have agreed a deal with Barcelona for the sale of Poland star Robert Lewandowski to the Spanish club.

“We have a verbal agreement from Barcelona. It’s good for both sides that we have clarity,” Bayern president Herbert Hainer said on the club’s Twitter account. 

“Robert is a very deserving player, he has won everything with us. We are incredibly grateful to him.”

Bayern did not give details but Spanish and German media reported the two-time FIFA men’s player of the year had agreed a four-year deal worth 50 million euros ($50.4m), including 5 million in potential add-ons. 

Forward Lewandowski told German television he would be joining the Barcelona squad on their tour of the United States from July 18-31. 

Media reported he would undergo his medical in Miami.

The agreement between the two teams closes the standoff with the 33-year-old who said at the end of May “it is certain that my story with Bayern has come to an end”. 

Bayern had only offered Lewandowski a one-year extension to his contract, which expires in the summer of 2023.

He was also unhappy with the salary offered and had clashed with the Bavarian club’s coach Julian Nagelsmann over tactical choices.

Although he resumed training with Bayern a few days ago, Lewandowski arrived late each time, except this Saturday, when he took the opportunity to bid farewell to his teammates.

The official presentation of the Bayern squad then took place at 15:00 local time (13:00GMT) without him.

With his imminent arrival, Barcelona continue to strengthen with the ambition of returning to the forefront of the European scene. 

He is the club’s fourth summer transfer after Ivory Coast midfielder Franck Kessie from AC Milan and Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen on a free transfer, and Brazil winger Raphinha, recruited for 70 million euro from Leeds.

A very generous transfer window for a club which suffered from an abysmal debt, exceeding 1 billion euros, a few months ago.

Double European top scorer, Lewandowski, who turns 34 next month, can bring experience to supervise a very young group, carried by Ansu Fati, Pedri, Gavi and Ferran Torres.

Lewandowski joined Bayern in 2014, scoring 344 goals in 375 competitive matches and broke the Bundesliga single-season scoring record. 

He won the Bundesliga in each of his eight seasons with the club as well as the Champions League, the Club World Cup and three German Cups.

This season again, “Lewy” scored 42 goals in 50 matches in all competitions, including 35 goals in 34 league matches and 13 goals in 10 Champions League matches. 

The striker’s official presentation to Barcelona is not expected to take place until they return to Catalonia in early August.

Meanwhile, Bayern Munich said on Saturday they had extended the contract of Germany winger Serge Gnabry until 2026.

Like Lewandowski, Gnabry’s future at Bayern had seemed to be in doubt but on Saturday both sides proclaimed how happy they were with the deal.

“I thought a lot about what I want as a player in the coming years, and came to the conclusion that I want to stay at Bayern, win everything again,” said Gnabry, who has won four Bundesliga titles as well as the Champions League, the World Club Cup and the German Cup at Bayern.

Shortly after wishing Lewandowski well at Barca, club president Herbert Hainer welcomed Gnabry’s new deal.

“It’s another strong signal that a player like Serge Gnabry sees his future at Bayern,” Hainer told Bayern’s website.

“With him, Sadio Mane, Thomas Mueller, Kingsley Coman, Leroy Sane and Jamal Musiala, Bayern have outstanding options on the flanks.”

Like Lewandowski, Gnabry had one more season left on his contract

In the end, both parties agreed on a new contract, which will allow the reigning German champions to keep their two main wingers for several years, as French international Kingsley Coman also extended his contract until 2027 earlier this year. 

The Bavarians start their new season on July 30 with the German Super Cup at RB Leipzig.

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