• Benatia: Bayern a dream

    By Football Italia staff

    Mehdi Benatia is today in Germany to complete formalities on a ‘dream’ transfer from Roma to Bayern Munich.

    A summer of speculation surrounding the 27-year-old’s future at Trigoria was ended yesterday with confirmation of an agreement between the Bundesliga champions and the Giallorossi for his transfer.

    Today the player has flown out from the Italian capital to Germany, to undergo a medical and put pen to paper on a believed five-year contract paying a €4m salary.

    “I am happy that finally the move to Bayern Munich has been worked out,” Benatia has told Sport1 in a first interview.

    “It has been a bit drawn out and during this time I thought the move may break down.

    “I had a great time in Rome, but now I am looking forward to a new chapter in my life.

    “In Bavaria there are many great players, the squad is excellent. This is a dream, as from now I will be a part of it.

    “Pep Guardiola strongly wanted me. I am looking forward to working with him. He is a great Coach.

    “I am ready to help Bayern become even stronger and will do my best to ensure that we have a successful season and that the fans are happy.”

    Bayern are reportedly paying Roma an initial fee of €26m for Benatia, to be followed by a possible further €4m, tied to various bonuses.

    The Giallorossi yesterday signed Kostas Manolas from Olympiacos, as a first replacement for the Morocco international.



  • Transfers: Benatia moves from Roma to Bayern

    (ANSA) - Rome, August 26 - Bayern Munich on Tuesday announced a deal to bring AS Roma's Morocco central defender Mehdi Benatia to the Bundesliga giants.

    Benatia, 27, will have a medical and sign a five-year contract later this week, it said.

    The terms of the deal were not disclosed.



  • Transfers: Bayern reach Benatia agreement

    (Football Italia) Bayern Munich are reported to have now reached an agreement with Roma for the signing of Mehdi Benatia.

    The two clubs were seen as in continued talks this week over a proposed deal for the 27-year-old, who has otherwise been linked with Barcelona and several clubs from the Premier League.

    Sky Sport Italia are now reporting that an agreement has been reached, which will see Pep Guardiola’s team pay an initial figure of €26m for the centre-back, with a further €4m potentially due on bonuses.

    For Benatia it is understood that there is a five-year contract set, paying an annual salary of €4m.

    The player is expected to fly out to Germany tomorrow to undergo medical tests and to complete formalities on the transfer, to end only a 12-month stay in the capital.



  • Transfers: Bayern-Roma close on Benatia

    (Football Italia) Roma and Bayern Munich are reportedly edging ever closer to a agreeing a deal for the transfer of Mehdi Benatia.

    It has been widely reported that in recent days the German champions have come in with a substantial offer for the 27-year-old centre-back.

    Whilst initial talks suggested a frugal Bayern was struggling to agree terms with both player and club, indications are of improved talks and progress towards the deal’s completion.

    The Gazzetta dello Sport today reiterate that Bayern have tabled a €24m bid for Benatia, with a further €4m due in bonuses.

    Whilst this is seen as likely to be enough to close the deal, Gianluca Di Marzio’s website suggests that there remains one delay further in who takes on payment of a five per cent clause due on the transfer fee to each of Benatia’s past clubs.



  • NT: Munir Haddadi says it’s possible to play for Morocco

    (Morocco World News) Rabat – In an interview with beIN SPORTS network, Moroccan young talent Munir Haddadi who plays for the Catalan club said he does not rule out the possibility of wearing the Moroccan jersey in the future.

    Born and raised in Spain, The 18-year-old player is making headlines throughout the world thanks to his brilliant performance with star-studded side of Barcelona.

    Asked about the Moroccan football federation being interested in him to defend the colors of the Moroccan national team, Haddadi said that “it’s very possible.”

    The Barcelona promising young player also said that he knows very little about football in Morocco but added that Morocco has good players and a good team.

    Haddadi scored in Sunday’s game against Elche.



  • Moroccans abroad: Munir El-Haddadi hails 'dream' debut

    (ESPN) Barcelona's latest attacking talent Munir El-Haddadi says it was a "dream come to true" to score at the Camp Nou on his full La Liga debut as Elche were beaten 3-0 in Sunday's opener.

    Munir, 19 next week, got his chance on the left wing due to Luis Suarez's suspension and Neymar's knee injury, and looked unfazed throughout, capping an excellent performance with a well-taken goal just after half-time to put his side 2-0 up.

    The Madrid-born youngster, who was on Atletico Madrid's books for a time before ending up at Barca's La Masia academy, told Barca TV after the game that he is proud to have played alongside such stars as Lionel Messi, who scored the side's two other goals.

    "I am so proud to have scored at the Camp Nou with Messi and so many other great players around me," Munir said. "I'm very happy. It was a dream come true to play with them."

    Munir's goal came when he raced onto a clever through ball by Ivan Rakitic, before calmly side-footing first time past Elche keeper Przemyslaw Tyton. The strike eased nerves at the Camp Nou after the home side had been reduced to 10 men when Javier Mascherano was sent off just before the break.

    "[The goal] came because if you keep losing your marker, sometimes you get there," Munir said. "I saw the goalkeeper was off his line and just chipped the ball."

    Munir added that new Blaugrana coach Luis Enrique -- who after the game said the Spain under-19 international had a lot of potential but had to keep improving -- has been a positive influence.

    "Luis Enrique has told me to keep doing what I do, and so I'll keep working for more chances," he said. "He tells us to work hard and get better every day. He's a great manager."

    Barca full-back Dani Alves told reporters after the game that Munir was showing the right attitude to succeed in the first team.

    "We have to look after Munir because he's got a great future ahead of him." Alves said. "He's humble, but hard work is getting him what he deserves. It's a pleasure to have him in the team."



  • Transfers: Roma stall Benatia to Bayern?

    (Football Italia) The Mehdi Benatia saga drags on, as it’s reported Roma called off a Bayern Munich meeting until the offer is raised.

    The Moroccan international defender had seemed all set to join Bayern on Monday or Tuesday as a replacement for the injured Javi Martinez.

    However, Sky Sport Italia claim today that a planned trip to Munich for director Walter Sabatini has been postponed.

    This is because Roma consider the offer, a reported €24m plus a further €2m in performance-related bonuses, is too far from the asking price.

    The Giallorossi want at least €30m for the 27-year-old defender.

    He has also been heavily linked with Manchester United and Chelsea, so they could still be in the running.



  • Transfers: Benatia to Bayern on Monday

    (Football Italia) German and Italian media are confident Roma will sell Mehdi Benatia to Bayern Munich on Monday.

    The Moroccan international was left out of the squad for today’s friendly match against AEK Athens, fuelling rumours of an imminent exit.

    Although Manchester United and Chelsea had made offers, Bayern emerged as the first choice for the defender.

    According to German and Italian newspapers today, Benatia will complete his €30m transfer to Bayern Munich on Monday.

    He is brought in as a replacement for Javi Martinez, who was ruled out for six months by an injury.



  • Transfers: Benatia-Bayern reports split

    (Football Italia) Speculation is split on whether or not this is Mehdi Benatia’s final day at Roma, and the progress of talks with Bayern Munich.

    Reports are once more gathering pace that the 27-year-old, who has been linked with a host of clubs this summer, is on his way out of the Stadio Olimpico.

    Talk is currently of an offer arriving from Bayern Munich for €30m, whilst rumours in the UK are that Arsenal are pressing for the Morocco international too.

    Following on from this, Sky Sport Italia are now reporting that Benatia will not be included in the squad to fly out to Athens for tomorrow’s friendly with AEK.

    The growing consensus in Italy is that the player is at Trigoria training with his teammates for the last time today, before likely completing a move away.

    The offer from Bayern is seen as most prevalent and is even suggested by some outlets as having already been accepted by Roma, with Benatia now ready to fly out to Germany to negotiate personal terms and complete formalities.

    Conversely, however, come reports from Sport1 and Bild in Germany, where the suggestion is that talks between Bayern, Roma and the player over the total spend have stalled.

    Benatia is seen by these outlets as asking for €8m gross in salary on a five-year contract, against a Giallorosso asking price of €35m. The Bavarians apparently want money spent on this deal to not exceed €75m.

    Manchester City, Barcelona, Manchester United and Chelsea have all previously been linked with Benatia during the summer.



  • Transfers: Benatia to Bayern imminent?

    (Football Italia) Speculation continues to grow that Roma may sell Mehdi Benatia to Bayern Munich, and he could be out by the end of the weekend.

    Rumours have emerged in recent days that the German champions have come in with an offer for the 27-year-old, who this summer has also been linked with Manchester City, Barcelona, Manchester United and Chelsea.

    Whilst Pep Guardiola and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge have refused direct comment on the matter, speculation is that an offer of an initial €25m has come in and that with bonuses, Roma could receive a total of €30m.

    The Corriere della Sera are reporting this, whilst Il Messaggero believe that negotiations could be run through fast enough to see the centre-back say goodbye to teammates over the weekend.



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