It has been an on-going transfer saga, but today, Bayern Munich have officially announced that they have agreed a contract with Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels until 2021.
Over the years, Hummels has consistently been linked with a variety of clubs around the world, but most consistently with Premier League clubs Manchester United and Arsenal. However, he clearly prefers to stay in his country of birth.
The 27-year-old centre back has been at Dortmund since 2009, when he signed from Munich, but now favours a return back to the club where his footballing career began. Despite being the captain of BVB, clearly Bayern Munich has a place in his heart… the fact that are among the world’s best clubs probably played a part in the transfer too!
It has been reported today that Bayern Munich have signed 18-year-old Portuguese midfielder Renato Sanches, highlighting yet another instance of Manchester United failing with their transfer policy.
After having scouts watch the youngster for a number of months now, Manchester United have failed to attract another member of Europe’s up-and-coming elite. United seemed to have been very close to signing the young star, however, in what is a surprise of sorts, Sanches has chosen the German giants, Bayern Munich.
Despite Munich being one of the best teams of the planet, hosting a ridiculous squad, packed full of talent, it must be asked: will Sanches get the games he desires? With a current midfield boasting players such as Javi Martinez, Arturo Vidal, Thiago, Mario Götze and Xabi Alonso among others, it is difficult to see Sanches being an ever-present in the first team.
The Round of 16 for the Champions League 2015/16 has thrown up some very tasty fixtures, as well as a fixture which has become a familiarity in the past few seasons too.
Arsenal v Barcelona:
It seems that every season in the Champions League Arsenal draw one of the favourites to win the tournament in the Round of 16, and get knocked out.
2010/2011: Knocked out by Barcelona
2011/2012: Knocked out by AC Milan
2012/2013: Knocked out by Bayern Munich
2013/2014:Knocked out by Bayern Munich
2014/2015: Knocked out by Monaco
This year Arsene Wenger’s men get to face the unstoppable front three of Messi, Suarez and Neymar… good luck!
Paris Saint Germaine v Chelsea:
For the third year running, Chelsea have been drawn against French club, Paris Saint Germaine. Two of Europe’s biggest teams will yet again battle it out to advance in the competition.
2013/14: Chelsea 3:3 PSG – Chelsea win on away goals.
2014/15:Chelsea 3:3 PSG – PSG on away goals after extra time.
Expect to see another 3-3 draw, it seems to be a running trend for this fixture!
Juventus v Bayern Munich:
Last year’s finalists, Juventus, have been drawn against the seemingly unstoppable German force that is Bayern Munich. Despite having a team which is arguably weaker than last year’s team after the departure of the likes of Carlos Tevez and Andrea Pirlo, Juventus are still a massive threat to Bayern, who are at the summit of the Bundesliga.
With the recent debate about the expensive nature of going to see your favourite team play nowadays, I thought it relevant to compare the prices of each Premier League team’s home kit on sale at their official websites. The ‘Price of Football’ argument has been mainly about ticket prices, however, there is no doubt that the argument can be applied to replica kit prices too.
All shirts are home shirts, short sleeve, with no printing.
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The cheapest mens replica shirt a fan can buy from a club’s official website is Liverpool’s at £39.99, although this is currently on sale, usual price being £49.99. On the other end of the spectrum, the gong for most expensive replica shirt goes to Manchester United, who’s home kit costs a whopping £60. Women’s home shirts are not much cheaper than men’s, with the cheapest coming from Liverpool (again on sale) at £39.99 and the most expensive belonging to Manchester City, Manchester United and Spurs at £55. In general, Junior kits are cheaper than their adult counterparts, and rightly so, however, until recently, Manchester United were charging a ludicrous £60 for a Junior replica shirt; they have brought it down to a ‘more modest’ £50 though.
It seems that as well as charging a high price for tickets, Premier League teams are charging quite a lot of money for their replica kits too. No wonder why so many fans are disgruntled at the rising price of watching football in England. However, if we were to compare England’s most expensive kits with the kits of European heavyweights, a new story is told.
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(Prices converted from Euros to Pounds using Google Converter)
Manchester United’s £60 for a home shirt is in-keeping with the prices top European football clubs charge for their shirts (with the exception of Bayern Munich, because, well, Germans do everything right nowadays). Barcelona, for example, charge £65 for both their men and women’s home shirts; compare this to Chelsea, who charge £55 and £50 respectively for their own replicas, and it seems that the prices for the English club’s kits are not too bad at all. Interestingly, all 5 of the European teams covered in this article have ‘Authentic Jerseys’ for sale. These are not replicas, and that is reflected in the average £90 price tag.
So, are we right to complain about the price of football? Yes. We have every right to complain when Norwich City’s home kit costs a fan as much as a Bayern Munich home kit would cost. Added to the rising prices of both match and season tickets, the average English Premier League fan is being put out of pocket in every aspect of supporting a team, no wonder it has recently been reported that Bayern Munich are outraged at the price of tickets Arsenal are charging for their up-and-coming Champions League clash.