Bayern Munich have been consistently investing in central defense over the past five years. They have balanced the books in this area by selling players. Lucas Hernandez and Benjamin Pavard left in the summer, while Kim Min-jae arrived from Napoli. Thomas Tuchel needed another defender to replace Pavard late in the window, but Bayern failed to get a deal done on time.
The upcoming winter window will see Bayern look for a versatile defender since Kim Min-jae will be away with South Korea for the Asian Cup, which will leave Tuchel with only two senior central defenders in the squad. Along with planning for the winter window, it does look like Bayern are also weighing up a move for a Bundesliga defender in the summer.
According to Bild (need subscription), Bayern and Tuchel are eyeing a summer move for Bayer Leverkusen defender Jonathan Tah. The Bavarian club has been impressed by Tah’s strong performances for Leverkusen this season. Bayer Leverkusen are currently the league leaders at the end of Hinrunde.
The move for Tah will be straightforward for Bayern since there is a release clause in his contract, which will come into effect at the end of the season. Bild reveals that the release clause in Tah’s contract is close to €18 million.
Bayern are yet to open talks with Tah’s representatives or Bayer Leverkusen regarding a transfer. However, this is a transfer that could develop at the end of the season. The low release clause in Tah’s contract makes him a very good option for Die Roten in the summer transfer window.
FC Barcelona’s Ronald Araujo has emerged as the top defensive target for Bayern. The Bavarian club and Tuchel have reportedly held talks with Araujo, but a move in the winter window is unrealistic. Barcelona wants to extend his contract, and Araujo is also settled at the Catalan club, so a move to Munich in the summer also looks unlikely.
Bayern are also keeping a close eye on a couple of young Girona defenders, while there is a reported interest in Arsenal Takehiro Tomiyasu. However, moves for these players are not realistic in January since both clubs are fighting for league titles.
The record Bundesliga champions may have to look for a stopgap solution in January. Barcelona’s Clement Lenglet could become a loan option for Die Roten. The French defender is currently out on loan at Aston Villa, but he may look for a move in January due to a lack of playing time with the Premier League club.