Bayern Munich have won the race to sign the highly-rated Leon Goretzka from Schalke on a free transfer – beating plenty of other top European clubs in the process.
The 22-year-old has already scored six goals in 12 international appearances for Germany and his contract was due to expire at Schalke in summer.
The likes of Liverpool and Barcelona were also believed to be interested in the midfielder but he will remain in the Bundesliga – something that was confirmed by Schalke’s sporting director Christian Heidel.
“Leon Goretzka informed us earlier this week that he wishes to leave the club and join Bayern,” Heidel said.
“We were very sorry to hear this. (Bayern chief executive) Karl-Heinz Rummenigge told us yesterday that Leon has completed a medical. We are losing a very, very good player.
“We did everything we could to try and keep him. In the summer he and his agent reached an agreement, but he wanted time to develop.
“We can cope with this situation, it wasn’t a complete surprise. We are prepared for this.”
WHY IT’S GOOD NEWS FOR CHELSEA AND MAN UTD
While the news came as a blow to Liverpool, Goretzka choosing Bayern could be very good news for a couple of Premier League clubs.
That’s because, due to Goretzka’s arrivals, the Bavarians will now be looking to offload Arturo Vidal in the summer.
Vidal’s contract expires in the summer of 2019 and, according to Sky Germany reporter, Marc Behrenbeck, he thinks Bayern will look to sell.
“I think Vidal will leave Bayern in the summer because Bayern will sign Goretzka and Bayern can make some money out of Vidal,” Behrenbeck told the Transfer Talkpodcast.
“He has a contract until 2019. In the next summer, it is the last chance to get some money out of Vidal’s deal.”
Both Chelsea and Manchester United have been linked with the Chilean during this transfer window and Antonio Conte has even spoken about the prospect of signing the 30-year-old.
CONTE ON SIGNING ARTURO VIDAL
“I must be honest, it’s not right to talk about a player of another team,” Conte said. “But Arturo is a fantastic player.
“I have a great respect for Arturo, and we spent many years in Juventus together. I would always want him to go to war with me.”
But Vidal is also good friends with compatriot Alexis Sanchez and could join him at Old Trafford – a move which would make sense following the news that Michael Carrick will retire at the end of the season.
It sounds like Jose Mourinho will go head-to-head once again with another Premier League rival for the signature of a Chilean…