Home Sports ‘Lewa stay’ chants and mixed signals on Lewandowski future in Munich

‘Lewa stay’ chants and mixed signals on Lewandowski future in Munich

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Bayern Munich fans chanted “Lewa stay” as the team celebrated a 10th straight Bundesliga title with them from the town hall balcony on Sunday amid mixed signals from the club leadership on the future of top striker Robert Lewandowski.

By Klaus Bergmann and John Bagratuni, dpa

Bayern Munich fans chanted “Lewa stay” as the team celebrated a 10th straight Bundesliga title with them from the town hall balcony on Sunday amid mixed signals from the club leadership on the future of top striker Robert Lewandowski.

Bayern and Lewandowski confirmed around Saturday’s season finale that Lewandowski will not renew his contract beyond 2023 and club officials have insisted he must fulfil his deal.

Club president Herbert Hainer reiterated this stance Sunday in a programme of broadcasters Sport1 but would now not completely rule out a transfer this summer if “both sides give their consent” to such a move.

“It could be that both sides agree on it,” Hainer said.

But CEO Oliver Kahn told local broadcasters BR there would be no summer exit for the World Footballer of the Year: “He will fulfil this contract. Period!”

And Kahn insisted Bayern would have no problem sitting out what could be a turbulent off-season because “the whole theatre, all this alarmism, we know that from the past” and “it doesn’t give us a headache.”

Kahn said that Lewandowski’s agent Pini Zahavi had “dismissed” a contract renewal offer.

He indirectly confirmed that the extension would have been only for one year, with Thomas Müller also only recently getting a one-year extension and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer probably as well in the near future.

Lewandowski said on Saturday that a summer transfer should be considered by both parties in the case of an offer, with Spanish top side Barcelona reportedly ready to give him a three-year deal.

Lewandowski got the arguably warmest welcome from the 10,000 fans on the packed Marienplatz square in a first celebration at the traditional location since 2019 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He told the fans “Mia san Mia”, the club motto which means we are who we are, named the 10th league title “a legendary story” but did not mention his personal future.

But the overall atmosphere appeared a little subdued given that it was the 10th Bundesliga title in a row and no other trophies like in 2013 or 2020 when Bayern claimed a treble.

“We want to win more titles next year,” coach Julian Nagelsmann told the fans – with or without Lewandowski.

Lewandowski has been in Munich since 2014 after four campaigns at German rivals Borussia Dortmund. In those years he has won every club title on offer including the 2020 treble with Bayern, and 10 Bundesliga titles in all with the two clubs.

He bettered Gerd Müller’s Bundesliga season scoring record to 41 goals a year ago and was season top scorer seven times, including the last five years. He is the second best scorer in league history with 312 goals, with only Müller ahead with 375.

“There is no replacement for a world class player like Robert Lewandowski,” Hainer admitted.

Müller said the team hopes that Lewandowski would stay for a final year and expected him in such a case to be fully professional, just like he was in his final months in Dortmund eight years ago after announcing the Munich move.

“Lewy is top professional. When you are on the pitch as a player, and especially as a striker, you want to perform,” Müller said.

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