The time is ticking on the Bayern Munich contract of veteran defender Jerome Boateng, and all signs point to an emotion-tinged departure at the end of the season.
In the modern era Boateng has been synonymous with Bayern and the rise of the German giants, though all good things must come to an end.
That end, it appears, is coming sooner than perhaps Boateng himself may have wished for. The defender recently expressed his willingness to remain in Bavaria and continue to perform under the ‘exciting’ Hansi Flick.
Jerome Boateng looks set to bring his Bayern Munich era to an end following this season
Reports in Germany however are now strongly pushing the idea that Bayern feel the time is ripe for change, with new defensive personnel on the horizon.
This, therefore, means Boateng will be walking out of the Allianz for the final time at the end of the season, leaving Bayern with his head held high as a free agent.
At 32 the player’s stock remains high, with a spate of elite Premier League clubs clambering for his signature.
So, with links to Tottenham, Arsenal and Chelsea growing stronger by the day, are we about to witness a Premier League redemption shot for the man who failed quite emphatically at Manchester City in the not too distant past?
The arrival of Boateng would signal not just the recruiting of World Cup winning talent, but also a character who is larger than life and doesn’t care who knows it. Sportsmail investigates further…
Why are Bayern letting him go?
After rescuing him from his Manchester City nightmare in 2011, Bayern took Boateng under their wing and cultivated him into one of the most versatile and imposing defenders on the continent.
Since, the Berlin-born defender has become an integral part of a successful era for both club and country, collecting a host of silverware along the way.
Boateng has played under several managers in Bavaria, in Bayern teams which have dominated in Europe and also, at times, in sides which have looked disjointed and searching for identity.
Boateng crafted himself as a powerful Bundesliga enforcer and a cornerstone for Bayern
Now, with Bayern freshly crowned champions of Europe and at the peak of their powers once more, it appears a parting of ways has been decided.
It makes sense, on the face of it. The Bundesliga giants are desperately trying to avoid a situation similar to that which Barcelona find themselves in, with an ageing team of big names being overly relied upon.
Conclusions seem to have been made that a summer exit for Boateng represents a good business decision.
The defender is one of the top earning stars at the Allianz, reported to be pocketing in the region of an eye-watering £180,000 a week.
Boateng has been a model servant for Bayern, though such lavish earnings sure take their toll on the club wage bill. While it is likely that the player would accept a financial reduction to secure a new deal, the fact that he is in the twilight of his career signals to Bayern that it is time…
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