As speculation mounts that Bayern Munich are in the market for a new striker in the summer, the candidates to take on the lead striker role at the Allianz Arena are being touted.
Elimination from the DFB Pokal at the hands of Freiburg has strengthened the case that a new number nine is required at the Rekordmeister. Bayern are more than capable of racking up big wins, but in those close games where a single goal is going to seal the win, they need a guaranteed finisher (à la Lewandowski).
Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic will no doubt be doing his thing behind the scenes, so who realistically are the top candidates to inherit the mantle left by Robert Lewandowski?
Kane has been one of the key names linked with Bayern over recent months. It is still unclear whether England’s record international goal scorer will be leaving Tottenham in the summer, but if he does, then Bayern will certainly be putting their bid in.
There are however a few stumbling blocks to any Kane signing. The competition from the likes of Manchester United would mean that should it turn into a bidding war with money being the decider, the Premier League side would win. Bayern have their limits even if they genuinely see Kane as their number one choice.
Kane would be 30 years of age by the time he arrived in Bavaria and the wisdom of spending a potentially record fee on a player of that age would be a worry.
Randal Kolo Muani
Looking closer to home a player, who scored against Bayern on the opening matchday of this season could be the preferred option. Randal Kolo Muani has gone from a free signing arriving Eintracht Frankfurt at the start of the season to a World Cup final appearance and potentially becoming the Bundesliga’s Torschützenkönig in the space of ten months.
He is surely going to be the source of a lot of attention in the next transfer window and Bayern will not want to let him slip out of their grasp. Bayern missed out on Erling Haaland as he was destined for the Premier League- with Kolo Muani however, you feel his Bundesliga adventure still has a way to go.
The Frenchman has proved himself in the Bundesliga and is only going to get better in the coming years. Kylian Mbappe recently praised him as being the ‘complete striker’ and if he gets Mbappe’s seal of approval then Bayern should make him their number one target.
Napoli striker Osimhen is going to be one of Europe’s most sought-after strikers in the summer, if as expected he leaves the Serie A side. Long gone are his days with VfL Wolfsburg where he failed to really establish himself, but he is a much-improved player nowadays and must be a player on Bayern’s radar.
With 21 league goals this season as well as four in the Champions League, the Nigerian is playing the best football of his career thus far and Napoli are going to be hard-pushed to turn down the big offers coming their way. There will be huge competition from the Premier League with Chelsea in all likelihood going to make a move. Bayern however will be in contact and will want to make their interest known.
This one is a little left-field, but when you look at the profile of the player and the potential for goals at a bargain price, it makes a lot of sense.
18-year-old Ferguson has scored three goals in ten Premier League matches for Brighton this season and provided two assists. He recently made his international debut for the Republic of Ireland (scoring on his debut against Latvia) and Bayern scouts have been to watch him on a few occasions. He is widely seen as a hugely talented prospect in England by experts.
He has a contract with the South Coast side until 2026 (only extended last summer), but a big, tempting offer in the summer could see him leave Brighton. Bayern would face stiff competition from host of English clubs but would fancy their chances of persuading him to move to Bavaria.
Bayern were previously linked with the Serbian striker when he left Fiorentina to join Juventus and could still be keeping tabs on him. Juventus were said to have agreed deal worth between €100m and €120m with Manchester United in January before the player’s agent pulled out of negotiations.
Renewed interest from Bayern could come this summer if other options become unattainable.
There is a growing realisation at the Weser Stadion that star striker Niclas Füllkrug could leave the club in the summer- could Bayern realistically be an option?
The Werder striker is the favourite to finish as the Bundesliga’s top scorer this season (15 goals so far) and has made himself the German national team’s number one since his World Cup exploits, so would a dream move to Bayern be out of the question?
His age and injury history would be a concern and he’s not exactly the glamour transfer many would want to see, but stranger things have happened.
Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram is going to be leaving the Foals in the summer, but his next destination is as yet unknown. While Serie A move seems likely, Bayern could keep him in the Bundesliga with a bid this summer.
His form has gone off the boil somewhat in the Rückrunde, but it would be a gamble free option as he wouldn’t haver the huge transfer fee attached to some of the other candidates. Whether he can live up to expectations would be a concern, but one potentially worth taking from Bayern.
Another outside bet would be French striker Folarin Balogun. The Arsenal striker is currently impressing hugely with Ligue 1 side Stade Reims but his long-term future with the Gunners is up in the air. RB Leipzig, Bayer Leverkusen, Atalanta, Monaco, Real Sociedad and Villarreal all want to sign the 21-year-old, but whether Bayern want to sign potential rather than guaranteed goals is the question.
Mathys Tel would seem the long-term answer for Bayern, but whether he is ready to be thrust in as the first-choice number nine is questionable. He has shown glimpses of his goalscoring talent this season, but probably needs time to develop fully before taking the prime spot in the Bayern attack. A loan move could be considered to advance his development.