So much has been written about Manuel Neuer’s proposed moves to Man Utd or Bayern it could fill Old Trafford. But rumours circulating about the Schalke shot stopper just will not die and without a contract extension in Germany, the 24-year-old German International is looking more likely to move come the summer.
Neuer is tied into a £32k p/w contract with Schalke until 2012 but the German club is willing to offer the keeper a bumper £50k p/w pay raise to keep him at the Veltins Arena.
Schalke have inflated his price tag massively to £30million to ward off interest from potential suitors. However, come the summer, if no deal has been made with the 24-year-old then Schalke may have to become resigned to losing the German International, decrease his price and let him move on.
Sir Alex has been following Neuer’s progress since 2009 and will now look to make a swoop for the highly rated keeper given United’s number 1 keeper, Edwin Van der Sar, looks set to retire from football at the end of the season. However, Bayern Munich have been strongly linked to the Schalke star and may look to also make a move in the summer.
Bayern may hold off any move for Neuer to give highly-rated youngster Thomas Kraft a chance to shine for the Bavarians, but if he is yet to impress come the summer, Bayern boss, Louis Van Gaal may be ready to make an offer.
Sir Alex has already wrapped up the signature of Denmark’s Anders Lindegaard this season, but may only look to the Danish shot stopper as a back up. With no top level club experience, Sir Alex will be looking to assess his new signing and make a decision in the summer.
Neuer’s agent Thomas Kroth confirmed talks with Schalke had been penciled in for January and manager Felix Magath added:
‘Of course we want to keep the best goalkeeper in the world. But I can’t say anything about the details. It would be nice if we could start the second half of the season with clarity.’
Money may not be the only issue for Neuer as well, who despite enjoying Schalke’s progress in the Champions League this season may wonder whether another opportunity to play in the competition will come again.
After a dismal start to their league campaign, Schalke, who finished runners-up in last season’s Bundesliga campaign, languish in 15th place, just six points off the bottom.
So where would you go if you had the chance? Bayern have had a tough start to their campaign and Van Gaal finds himself under a bit of pressure at the Allainz Arena, but last year’s Bundesliga champions look decent in the Champions League and speak Neuer’s native language.
However, Man United are looking stronger of late and could still win the Premier League once again. In the Champions League they have every chance of reaching the final stages and are widely tipped to make massive improvements to their squad in the summer.
Or stay? Neuer is loved at Schalke and the club are bending over backwards to retain his services. Should the keeper give another two years to the club that brought him through before leaving for pastures new?
Time will tell.
Follow Matt Visser on Twitter @Matt_V_Football
Talking of Bayern, did you ever see Schweinsteiger’s missus? Here’s 16 reasons United fans will be gutted he’s renewed his contract with the Bavarians! Click on the photo to open the gallery below!
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