Reports in Germany and France claim Bayern Munich have won the race to sign one of the most prized defenders in Europe RB Leipzig center-back Dayot Upamecano who is said to have agreed personal terms with the Bundesliga giants.
Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić confirmed that Upamecano to the club is a done deal: “I can confirm that and we are very happy about that at FC Bayern. We had very good, intensive and professional discussions with Dayot and his agent Volker Struth for several months.
“During the past week in Doha, I spoke to everyone involved again. At the end of a long process, the player, his family and his management were convinced that FC Bayern was the right partner for them.”
Reports say Bayern will activate his €40 million release clause and bring him to Munich. There is no word on the length of his contract or the wage he was offered.
The first report came from RMC Sport journalist Loïc Tanzi:
Dayot Upamecano has chosen Bayern. The club has reached an agreement with the Frenchman. Bayern will activate Upamecano’s release clause [@Tanziloic] pic.twitter.com/h6JpzRhf30
— Sextuple winners (@iMiaSanMia) February 12, 2021
This was quickly followed up by a second confirmation from L’Equipe. According to their report, Upamecano had been wrestling with the choice of staying in Germany or moving abroad to England, where suitors such as Chelsea and Liverpool awaited him.
However, the Frenchman decided to stay in the Bundesliga after careful consideration.
Thomas Tuchel has stated that he had to changed the team’s formation to back four for tactical reason.
Chelsea narrowly sealed their spot in the FA Cup quarter-final with a 1-0 win over Championship side Barnsley on Thursday night at Oakwell.
The German gaffer’s side progressed into the last eight despite a sub-par performance in Yorkshire as Abraham saved the day and spared a cup upset.
Tuchel said: “We changed to a back four and took Marcos [Alonso] out for this tactical change. Andreas [Christensen] had to go out because he had a headache. The changes made it a little easier to get into the opponent’s half and overcome the first press.
“We did it well at the start of the second half and played constantly in the opponent’s half.
“We scored the goal and I had the feeling that they increased the risk but we stepped down in the little decisions. Not enough courage and it was too deep for a long, long time.
“We clearly can play better, so yes I expected more but not in terms that I am frustrated.
“If you lack a rhythm and a bit of self-confidence and you have to show on this pitch, against an opponent that takes all the risk and plays the game of his life, that is not easy. We can do better but I don’t want to be too hard on the players.”
On playing Sheffield United in the last eight: “It’s going to be a tough one. They are a very physical team that presses high. They are organised but I am happy to have a home game. This is what we wanted.”
Barnsley boss Valerien Ismael states that his strategy was designed “to make Chelsea make mistakes” in the Emirates FA Cup clash on Thursday night.
Tammy Abraham’s second-half goal helped Thomas Tuchel’s side squeeze through in a match that Barnsley were superb and gallant in defeat, with Alex Mowatt and Callum Brittain dictating play for the hosts.
Barnsley boss Valerien Ismael to BBC Sport: “It’s exactly the game we wanted, we made a great performance. We could see how far we can bring our principles, to make Chelsea make mistakes, we did it perfect in the first half but we had to score.
“It was a change in the second half, Chelsea made a change of shape and had more control. We were punished for one moment which was a shame. But we kept fighting to the end, we are proud of the performance.
“We know that we can compete at that level. Chelsea could have had a penalty, the goal could have been offside, they are 50/50. Tonight we go to bed with a good feeling.”
(On there being no VAR for tonight’s game) ” I saw Sheffield United v Bristol City and I saw the VAR (being used) and I was delighted against Chelsea we would have it, but it didn’t happen.
“We had to score in the first half, this was the most important thing, if we scored it could’ve been a different game.
“We were very delighted with the performance, less with the result but we improved and tonight it was the next step for the guys to see how far we can bring our principles against a side like Chelsea and I think we saw that tonight.”
Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has identified the condition of the pitch as a major reason for his team’s performance against Barnsley in the Emirates FA Cup, saying that: “The circumstances were very difficult”.
The West London side made it through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup thanks to a 1-0 win over Barnsley at Oakwell.
After the match, Tuchel said: “We were lucky and we have admit, we were lucky in some situations, we had Kepa who saved two big chances in the first half and we had Tammy who saved the one on the goal line with his head. We struggled in the beginning of the game, it was a better second half.
“It was a very, very good goal which I liked a lot, it was an excellent run from Reece and finish from Tammy. The Opponent took a lot of risks and played a physical game and we had difficulties coping with it.
“We ended the last 15 minutes way too deep, we couldn’t push the game into the opponents half and in the end we have to admit we were a little bit lucky, but its not forbidden to be lucky in the cup.
“The circumstances were very difficult, the pitch was very difficult, I don’t want to be too hard on the players. It’s clear we can do better, but we have to admit that our opponent played a very, very good game.
“It was a rough day for us. It’s not easy, you arrive for a cup tie like this against a strong opponent who plays the game of their life and suddenly you lack rhythm and a little self confidence.”