France, Spain or Germany?

Eduardo Camavinga has admirers following his exploits for Rennes in Ligue 1.

Some of Europe's biggest clubs are interested, but could he be set for Bavaria?

 

TOP STORY – CAMAVINGA WANTED IN GERMANY

Bayern Munich are hoping to sign Rennes sensation Eduardo Camavinga, according to France Football.

Camavinga is unwilling to extend his Rennes contract and the 18-year-old has been linked with Real Madrid, Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain and Arsenal.

Borussia Monchengladbach's Florian Neuhaus is also on Bayern's list, though the Bundesliga champions reportedly feel Camavinga could be better value for money.

 

ROUND-UP

- Who will permanently replace Jose Mourinho as Tottenham head coach following his sacking on Monday? Football Italia claims Spurs have contacted former Juventus, Chelsea and Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri. The Daily Mail, however, reports RB Leipzig's Julian Nagelsmann is Tottenham's top candidate.

- La Razon says West Ham are leading the race to sign Sevilla forward Youssef En-Nesyri, who has also been linked with United and Liverpool.

PSG are the most likely suitors for Arsenal full-back Hector Bellerin, according to Sport. Bellerin is likely to leave the Gunners and he has been linked to Barcelona.

- Sport says Barca's plans depend on Lionel Messi's future. Messi is out of contract at the end of the season, but president Joan Laporta is keen to re-sign the superstar amid reported interest from PSG and Manchester City. It comes as Barca target Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland, who has also been linked with rivals Real Madrid, United, City, Chelsea, Liverpool, PSG and Juventus. Lyon captain Memphis Depay, City's Sergio Aguero and Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum are also reportedly wanted at Camp Nou.

Hansi Flick said he made clear his intention to leave Bayern Munich at the end of the season so as not to "fool around" amid growing speculation over his future.

Flick announced following Bayern's 3-2 win over Wolfsburg on Saturday that he has requested the termination of his contract – which runs until 2023 – at the conclusion of the campaign.

The 56-year-old has been strongly tipped to replace Joachim Low as Germany head coach after the rescheduled Euro 2020 but, while admitting the role was an option, denied negotiations had already begun.

Bayern's board responded to Flick's declaration by stating it "disapproves of the unilateral communications issued by Hansi Flick" and that talks would continue after the Bundesliga champions' game with Mainz on April 24.

Flick said on the eve of Bayern's fixture with Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday: "I have a request in advance: I will not say anything today about the discussions about my statements on Saturday and about the opinion of the club.

"I wanted to tell the team personally that I asked the club to terminate my contract in the summer. 

"It was important to me for the players to know because it has already been leaked. It was a spontaneous thing to inform the team. 

"The logical step was then to tell the media what is happening so that I don't have to 'fool around' any further."

Flick, who said the Leverkusen game is going to be too soon for Robert Lewandowski to return from a knee injury, was asked for his thoughts on several players posting images on social media celebrating the club's period of success under the coach.

Since taking over from Niko Kovac, Flick has won six trophies with Bayern – including a Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League treble last term.

"I am very grateful to the club, I have a great, successful time here. You always have success together, not alone," Flick added.

It was announced on Sunday that 12 teams have signed up to form a breakaway European Super League, with Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham of the Premier League joining up with LaLiga heavyweights Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid along with Serie A trio Juventus, Milan and Inter.

The news has been met with widespread condemnation, while UEFA and Europe's major leagues and ruling bodies have vowed to do all they can to block the competition.

No German clubs have signed up and Flick voiced his disapproval for the plans.

"I can only say that I don't know all the details, but I stand behind the statement made by the club and Borussia Dortmund. I think it would not be good for European football," Flick said.

For a long time, Neymar had been tipped to re-join Barcelona after leaving Camp Nou in a world-record transfer in 2017.

But Neymar's future is close to being finalised.

Paris Saint-Germain are set to retain the Brazil international.

 

TOP STORY – NEYMAR AND PSG POISED FOR RENEWAL

Neymar is close to signing a new contract with Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain, according to Canal+.

PSG star Neymar has been in contract negotiations and publicly pledged his long-term future to the club following their progress to the Champions League semi-finals.

Previously linked with a return to Barcelona, Neymar could sign his renewal before the Champions League tie against Manchester City.

 

ROUND-UP

- Erling Haaland's future remains up in the air, reports Diario AS. The in-demand Borussia Dortmund sensation has been linked with Barca, Real Madrid, Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, PSG, Juventus, Chelsea and Bayern Munich. Speculation over his next move intensified as he followed Barca captain Lionel Messi on Instagram amid the Camp Nou club's interest.

- Diario Sport claims Ousmane Dembele's contract talks with Barcelona have stalled. Dembele, who is contracted until 2021-22, has been linked with United and Liverpool.

United and Liverpool are both eyeing Sevilla star Youssef En-Nesyri, says Estadio Deportivo. Sevilla are reportedly demanding in the region of £40million (€46m) for the forward.

- Russian powerhouse Zenit are interested in signing Barca defender Samuel Umtiti, reports Fabrizio Romano. Liverpool, United and Chelsea have been linked previously.

Gianluigi Donnarumma and Milan remain at an impasse regarding contract talks, according to Gianluca Di Marzio. The star Milan and Italy goalkeeper is out of contract at the end of the season and the likes of PSG, Chelsea, Juve and United have emerged as possible destinations.

Bayern Munich's board has voiced disapproval at head coach Hansi Flick for announcing he intends to leave at the end of the season.

Flick revealed in a television interview after Bayern's 3-2 win at Wolfsburg on Saturday that he has asked Bayern to terminate his contract, which is due to expire in 2023.

The 56-year-old also declared that taking over as Germany boss when Joachim Low steps down later this year is "an option", but no talks have been held with German Football Association (DFB) officials.

However, Bayern released a statement on their official website on Sunday questioning the timing of Flick's comments, with the Bavarians still embroiled in a Bundesliga title race.

"Yesterday, FC Bayern head coach Hansi Flick made public his wish to terminate his contract, which runs until June 2023, at the end of the current season," the statement, on behalf of the Bayern company board, read.

"Hansi Flick had informed the FC Bayern Munchen AG executive board of this wish during the past week.

"Hansi Flick and FC Bayern had agreed to place the focus on the matches against VfL Wolfsburg, Bayer 04 Leverkusen (20 April) and 1. FSV Mainz 05 (24 April), in order not to disrupt the concentration of the whole club on these three important matches.

"FC Bayern disapproves of the unilateral communications issued by Hansi Flick and will continue talks after the match at Mainz, as agreed."

Flick replaced Niko Kovac as Bayern boss in November 2019 and won a Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League treble in his first season at the Allianz Arena.

Bayern have added to that with three more major trophies this campaign, and another Bundesliga title is likely to follow as Flick's side are seven points clear at the top with five games to go.

Flick's announcement came amid suggestions of a strained relationship behind the scenes with sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.

Former Germany assistant manager Flick has won 67, drawn eight and lost six of his 81 games in charge of Bayern.

Hansi Flick says the Germany job is something he will consider if approached after announcing his decision to leave Bayern Munich, but he has denied already holding talks with German Football Association (DFB) chiefs over succeeding Joachim Low.

The 56-year-old ended recent speculation over his future on Saturday by revealing in a television interview he has asked Bayern to terminate his contract, which has another two years to run, at the end of the campaign.

He has been strongly tipped to take over as Germany's next head coach when Low, who he previously worked alongside as assistant for Die Mannschaft, steps down after this year's delayed Euro 2020 tournament.

Flick has previously hinted he would welcome the chance to manage the four-time world champions, though he insisted there have been no discussions with DFB national team director Oliver Bierhoff.

"Of course the DFB is an option that every coach has to consider," he told Sky Sport Germany. "But for me the last few weeks have not been easy.

"I was in the process of informing the club and my team, which was very important. There's nothing more to say on that."

Asked if he already has another positioned lined up, Flick said: "No, my future is not clear. I haven't held talks yet [with Bierhoff] because we had an important phase here with the Champions League and the Bundesliga."

Flick replaced Niko Kovac in November 2019 and won a Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League treble in his first season at the Allianz Arena, which Bayern have added to with three more major trophies this campaign, with another Bundesliga possibly to follow.

However, there have been suggestions of a strained relationship behind the scenes between Flick and Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic, a rift allegedly triggered by the club's decision not to offer Jerome Boateng a new contract.

"My reasons for wanting to leave is something discussed internally and something that will remain internal," Flick said. "We've done a great job here for almost two years. I'm impressed with this team, their quality and their attitude."

Flick's announcement came on the back of Bayern's 3-2 win over Wolfsburg, which moved the reigning Bundesliga champions seven points clear of RB Leipzig with five games to play.

The former Hoffenheim boss informed his players earlier in the week and captain Manuel Neuer respects the decision.

"The reasons don't matter to us," he told Sky Sport Germany. "It was emotional for all of us because we had such a successful time together. It was particularly important for him to inform us personally."

Thomas Muller, another key member of Bayern's hugely successful 17-month spell under Flick, added: "He didn't give us the exact reasons, and he didn't have to. 

"He left a lot of energy in the intense past year and a half. To be a coach at Bayern, you need thick skin. The expectations are very high and you always have to stand by your team."

Hansi Flick has confirmed he wants to step down as Bayern Munich boss at the end of the season.

Flick has been tipped to take over as Germany coach when Joachim Low leaves his post following this year's European Championship.

Having previously worked as assistant to Niko Kovac, Flick took sole charge of the Bavarian giants following the Croatian's sacking in November 2019.

He subsequently led them to a Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League treble, earning a new contract that ran until 2023 in the process.

However, after weeks of speculation, Flick has now revealed that he wishes to depart at the end of the season.

"I told the team today that I would like to get out of my contract this summer," he told Sky following a 3-2 win over Wolfsburg on Saturday.

"I already told those responsible after the Champions League elimination [against Paris Saint-Germain] during the week. I wanted to tell the team personally.

"I also want to thank the club that gave me the opportunity to train this team."

Flick served as an assistant to Low in the Germany set-up from 2006 until 2014.

It has been suggested the 56-year-old would jump at the chance to replace Low following a difficult year at the Allianz Arena.

Although Bayern remain on track to retain their Bundesliga title, they were dumped out of the DFB-Pokal by second-tier Holstein Kiel in January.

The defence of their Champions League crown ended on Tuesday, with a 1-0 victory over PSG sending them out on away goals after losing the first leg of the quarter-final tie 3-2.

Reports of clashes between Flick and the club's sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic are also thought to have expedited the coach's departure.

Hansi Flick has confirmed he wants to step down as Bayern Munich boss at the end of the season.

Manuel Neuer backed Hansi Flick as the right coach for Bayern Munich, amid reports of a row with sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.

A difficult week for Bayern ended in frustrating circumstances on Saturday, as Marcus Ingvartsen's late goal snatched a 1-1 draw for Union Berlin at the Allianz Arena.

Jamal Musiala's moment of quality seemed set to have proved decisive for Bayern, who are now just five points clear of RB Leipzig in the Bundesliga.

With the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final against Paris Saint-Germain coming up, Flick made a glut of changes for the Union clash, while both Musiala and Kingsley Coman sustained injuries.

According to reports, Flick's relationship with sporting director Salihamidzic has all but broken down, raising questions over the future of Bayern's coach, who has been linked with the soon-to-be-vacant Germany job.

Asked to discuss Flick's future after Saturday's game, a frustrated Neuer told Sky Sport: "I think Hansi Flick is the right coach for us."

Reflecting on the match, Neuer added: "Of course, it is very annoying. We played a good game with the team for long stretches. We would have deserved to win. That is bitter."

Against a stubborn Union defence, Bayern failed to register a shot on target in the first half for only the second time this season.

They managed to find a way to goal through Musiala, whose goal was his fourth in the Bundesliga, and his first not as a substitute.

Musiala went off shortly after scoring, though Flick has confirmed the youngster was only suffering from cramps, while he also revealed Coman was not expected to last the full 90 minutes.

"It was clear from the start that Kingsley would only play 45 minutes. I think it's not so serious. Jamal Musiala had cramps," Flick told reporters.

Flick also offered updates on the fitness of Lucas Hernandez and Leon Goretzka ahead of Tuesday's Paris showdown.

"I have more hope for Lucas Hernandez," Flick added.

"We won't take any risks with Leon, it's a muscular injury. The doctors decide whether it's worth the risk."

Bayern are now winless in two consecutive home games in all competitions for the first time since November 2018 when failing to win in four home games in a row under Niko Kovac.

Jamal Musiala's goal was not enough for Bayern Munich as they were held 1-1 draw by Union Berlin in a match which was hardly ideal preparation for Tuesday's Champions League showdown with Paris Saint-Germain.

Hansi Flick named a much-changed team for the Bundesliga game sandwiched between the two-legged quarter-final tie with PSG, and it appeared as though one of the fresh faces would prove decisive when Musiala – who later went off injured – slotted in.

Yet Bayern, who also lost Kingsley Coman to injury, were punished for sloppy defending late on when Marcus Ingvartsen bundled in from close range, with help from the unfortunate Josip Stanisic.

While ending a six-match winning run in the Bundesliga, the result also sees Bayern's lead at the top cut to five points, with RB Leipzig defeating Werder Bremen.

Jerome Boateng will not be offered a new contract by Bayern Munich at the end of the season, the German club's sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has announced.

The 32-year-old has spent the past 10 seasons at the Allianz Arena, making over 350 appearances during that time and winning 21 trophies.

He was a regular for Bayern last season as they won a domestic and European treble and has started 29 games in all competitions this campaign.

However, with Dayot Upamecano due to arrive from RB Leipzig ahead of next season, the former Hamburg and Manchester City player will follow fellow long-serving defender David Alaba in departing when his contract runs out.

"Jerome's contract expires in the summer and will not be extended," Salihamidzic told Sky Sport Germany ahead of Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg with Paris Saint-Germain. "He leaves through a big door, hopefully with more titles."

Boateng's future is rumoured to have been a point of conflict between Salihamidzic and head coach Hansi Flick behind the scenes, with the latter pushing for a new contract to be awarded.

The centre-back has also represented Germany 76 times, but he has not been called up to the squad by outgoing boss Joachim Low since October 2018.

Alaba announced in February that he will also be leaving Bayern when his deal comes to an end in June, but Bayern have already moved to snap up Upamecano from Leipzig in a deal worth a reported €42.5million.

Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge does not want to see UEFA's Financial Fair Play (FFP) model scrapped and has called for tougher sanctions for clubs that break the rules.

FFP regulations, approved by UEFA in 2010 to prevent clubs that qualify for its competitions from spending beyond their means, appear set for significant changes due to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The break-even requirement, which means clubs must balance their spending with their revenues and restricts the accumulation of debt, has been declared "purposeless" by UEFA in the context of the revenue crisis caused by COVID-19.

Changes to those specific regulations could well be on the horizon but, though Rummenigge sees the merit in such adjustments, he is firmly against talk of FFP being scrapped altogether.

He told The Athletic of the break-even rule: "Right now, you're allowed to lose €30million (£25.8m) over three years.

"You can't even buy a player for that kind of money, so it's worth looking into it if that can be sensibly adjusted."

However, on FFP as a whole, Rummenigge added: "Things were spiralling out of control, with many clubs losing money in the past.

"FFP has led to a more rational approach, by forcing clubs to budget sensibly and it has made football profitable as a result.

"We can't get to the point where only clubs owned by billionaires can compete."

Rummenigge and the Bayern hierarchy have long been vocal about their commitment to a self-sustainable business model, and he is keen to see FFP changed so that it features harsher penalties for clubs that do not live within their means and breach regulations.

"The current FFP doesn't quite get it right, because the punishments don't work," said Rummenigge. "They're not well defined enough, it's all a grey area.

"Clubs who violate the rules in the future must face much more severe sanctions. We need to really get it right this time. Smart people are looking at it."

Leon Goretzka insists Germany's players are to blame for their shock defeat to North Macedonia and not under-fire head coach Joachim Low.

Germany lost 2-1 on Wednesday to the side ranked 52 places below them in the FIFA rankings – their first World Cup qualifying defeat since September 2011, a run spanning 35 games.

The loss was Die Mannschaft's second in four competitive matches, having also been thrashed 6-0 by Spain in November's Nations League clash.

Low recently announced he will quit his role with the national side after the rescheduled Euro 2020, though Germany's poor form – just five wins in their last 11 matches – has led to calls for a change before the tournament.

But Goretzka, who started all three of Germany's March qualifiers, has absolved the long-serving head coach of any blame for the latest calamitous loss, which leaves Germany third in Group J.

"We players are to blame for the defeat and no one else," he told ZDF. "We felt a touch of euphoria in the country after beating Iceland and Romania. 

"We have just got to tell ourselves now that it is behind us. You have to see that the scaffolding is becoming even more stable. In any case, that is primarily the job of the players."

Goretzka marked his return to club duty on Saturday with the winning goal in Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich's 1-0 win over closest challengers RB Leipzig.

He has been a key player once again for Bayern this term, featuring 28 times in all competitions, 21 of those appearances coming in the Bundesliga.

The midfielder's drilled finish against Leipzig from a Thomas Muller cutback was his fifth Bundesliga goal in 2020-21, adding to five assists – only Muller (25) and Robert Lewandowski (41) have been directly involved in more for Bayern in the league this season.

Goretzka also leads the way among Bayern midfielders in the Bundesliga for recoveries per 90 minutes (8.98) and is behind only Javi Martinez (2.57) for interceptions, with 2.27 a game on average.

Bayern are reportedly eager to agree fresh terms with Goretzka on a new contract, with his current deal set to expire at the end of next season, and the 26-year-old has indicated he is ready to commit to the club.

"I feel very comfortable here," he said. "Bayern has helped me a lot in the last few years to take the next step in my career. That is why the tendency is clearly towards Bayern."

Hansi Flick hailed his side's "mentality" after they moved seven points clear at the Bundesliga summit with a 1-0 win over RB Leipzig on Saturday. 

Leon Goretzka's third goal in his last four top-flight games proved the difference at the Red Bull Arena as Bayern took a significant step towards a ninth consecutive Bundesliga title. 

It marked the 62nd consecutive match in which Bayern have found the back of the net, setting a new record in Germany football since the Bundesliga was founded in 1963. 

Bayern did not have it all their own way against Leipzig, who had 14 shots to their nine, and Flick acknowledged his side had to use all of their mental strength to claim all three points against their second-placed hosts. 

"It was a top game and Leipzig showed why they are right up there," he told Sky. "We were on the trigger right from the start. 

"We didn't play forward as we would have wanted, but the goal was played out nicely. Leipzig caused us some problems, but the morale and mentality of my players is really excellent."

Goretzka's goal was created by Thomas Muller, who has now been involved in 11 goals in his last 10 Bundesliga games (four goals, seven assists). 

The 31-year-old has not played for Germany since November 2018 after being deemed surplus to requirements by Joachim Low.

However, there have been growing calls for him to be recalled for the rescheduled Euro 2020 at the end of the domestic season. 

Flick praised Muller for his "sensational" campaign, but said he did not want to influence Low, who he was assistant to between 2006 and 2014.

"I don't have to interfere," he added. "Thomas Muller is playing a sensational season. He can be important for other teams too, but in the end it has to be decided by Jogi. 

"He pushes his team-mates again and again, also in training. I am glad that we have such players in our ranks."

No side leading the Bundesliga by at least seven points after 27 games has failed to go on and win the title, but goalscorer Goretzka is refusing to get carried away.

"There are still 21 points to be awarded," he said. "It was a big step, but not the decisive one."

Bayern host Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final on Wednesday before welcoming Union Berlin to the Allianz Arena in the Bundesliga four days later.

Bayern Munich took a giant stride towards a ninth consecutive Bundesliga title as Leon Goretzka's goal sealed a 1-0 win over nearest rivals RB Leipzig on Saturday. 

Hansi Flick's side, who were without top goalscorer Robert Lewandowski after he sustained a knee injury on international duty with Poland, are now seven points ahead of second-placed Leipzig, with seven games remaining. 

A fifth straight Bundesliga win was secured seven minutes before the interval, Goretzka powering home after smart play by Thomas Muller – a German-record 62nd consecutive match in which they have scored. 

Leipzig came close to securing a point on a number of occasions in the second half, but their eight-game unbeaten league run – and possibly their title hopes – ultimately came to an end at the Red Bull Arena.

Despite doing much of the pressing in the early stages, Leipzig were unable to trouble Manuel Neuer in the Bayern goal. 

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting fizzed wide midway through the first half before Bayern went ahead with their first shot on target in the 38th minute. 

Thomas Muller pulled the ball back to Goretzka, who thundered into Peter Gulacsi's top-left corner from 15 yards for his fifth Bundesliga goal of the campaign. 

Gulacsi got down well to paw away Leroy Sane's volley from outside the area as Bayern threatened to extend their advantage before the interval.

Dani Olmo twice went close straight after the break, while Neuer superbly tipped over Marcel Sabitzer's long-range drive. 

Muller was denied by Gulacsi late on, but it mattered little in the end as Bayern held on for a vital three points with the minimum of fuss. 

It's November 25, 2020. A young German winger stands on the touchline anxiously waiting to step on to the Allianz Arena pitch for his Champions League debut in his hometown.

But as he waits to be allowed on, there are people watching both on television and in the largely empty stands who know this isn't how it should've been.

Rather than wearing the all-red of Bayern Munich, Karim Adeyemi jogs on in the all-black of Salzburg with the Austrian champions 3-0 down.

A technically gifted and supremely fast winger, Adeyemi has long been considered one of Germany's most promising young players, having cost Salzburg a reported €3million when he was 16.

Adeyemi had left Bayern six years earlier and is a situation that has dominated much of his early professional career, with questions about why he left never far away.

Now 19, Adeyemi has previously spoken at length about his attitude as a kid, how learning wasn't much to his liking and distraction was a regular nuisance to him.

These factors certainly didn't help at Bayern. Neither, Adeyemi alleged in the past, did the club showing little support to players who strayed from "the plan". The collective, rather than individualistic talents, was prioritised.

But to speak to him in 2021, Adeyemi comes across as grounded and professional, yet driven, well aware of the level he wants to reach.

"I think it's a dream for every player to play in the Bundesliga or Premier League one day," he tells Stats Perform News. Yet, should he end up in England, it's fair to say he'll have taken the long route.

Chelsea were a keen admirer of Adeyemi before he joined Salzburg, the youngster confirming in the past that he turned down a move to Stamford Bridge in favour of Austria.

"I decided that with my family because I thought that Salzburg was the best destination for me," he continued. "Their playing style fits me well and we harmonised perfectly. I got along well with Christoph Freund [Salzburg sporting director] and everyone else. That's why I decided to join this club."

But while the average football fan might question his choice, Adeyemi's former coach at Unterhaching – with whom he spent the six years between Bayern and Salzburg – believes it was a mature decision that made perfect sense.

"Surprised? No, not at all. For him, Salzburg was the right club," Marc Unterberger told Stats Perform News. "Their philosophy suits him perfectly, and the proximity to Unterhaching, where his family still lives, is ideal.

"What is being done there, especially in training young players, is absolutely remarkable."

 

But what exactly has that meant for Adeyemi? The teenager adds: "It was my plan to first join Liefering [on loan] when I arrived at Salzburg. I wanted to perform well there and show my skills, then I wanted to have more and more contact with the first team [at Salzburg], and I think for every young player it's first of all important to get settled. Now I am at the first team and I am happy about it. That was my plan so far."

After spending a year and a half at Liefering, who essentially act as a B team for Salzburg, Adeyemi returned to his parent club having caught the eye in Austria's second tier.

He scored 15 goals and got eight assists in 35 league games for Liefering, strong evidence that he was ready for the step up.

Adeyemi hasn't been quite so explosive with Salzburg, only having a hand in goals in six of his 29 Austrian Bundesliga matches, but the key factor here is that he is having to remain patient – only nine of those 29 games were as a starter.

"Well, you can never be completely satisfied," he explained. "You always have things to improve. It was the same for me when I played in Liefering. I always want more. It's exactly the same here in the first team. I always say I am never satisfied with what I do, I always want more, and I think that's what I am focusing on.

"I am trying to improve my game together with the coaching staff. I'm trying to have progress in my development. Nobody knows what happens in the future."

It is a display of maturity and realism that belies many of the stories that have followed Adeyemi during his fledgling career. Unterberger believes the youngster is often shown in a negative light, adamant most kids are prone to distraction.

"I find that he is portrayed too negatively. Of course, Karim wasn't a classic academy player. He had his own thoughts on how to deal with things. We never wanted to change him completely, and I think we succeeded quite well. Karim is a really great guy and a great person.

"Until the time Karim came to us, we had never had such an exceptional player in our youth division. Of course, as a young person, you benefit from being accepted for who you are, but I would like to make it very clear that there was no situation within the team in which Karim behaved in such a way that we as a club were forced to act. On the contrary, over time he developed more and more towards putting himself at the service of the team.

"He was easily distracted, that's right, but let's be honest, something like this is normal when young people develop."

After all, Unterberger arguably knows Adeyemi better than any other coach.

"I can still remember it very well, the first time I saw him play in an Under-11 tournament," he recalls. "Back then he was still playing for TSV Forstenried. My first thought was: 'We absolutely need this player'. Fortunately, it worked out later!"

That might be something of an understatement in reality. The €3m fee that Unterhaching received made him the most expensive German under-18 player ever, while 2019 saw him win the Fritz-Walter Gold Medal, an award handed out to Germany's best youth player. Previous winners include Timo Werner, Emre Can and Mario Gotze.

And he has certainly shown flashes of his significant potential. In November, he became the first player this season to have a hand in four goals (one scored, three set up) in a single game in the Austrian Bundesliga. Only one other has matched that feat this term: his team-mate, Mergim Berisha. In December, he broke Salzburg's record for their youngest ever scorer in the Champions League.

Yet Adeyemi recognises he still has a long way to go.

"I can only talk for myself and not for the other players. I think if you feel comfortable within a team and you get your chances, then there's a possibility [of finding the right fit]. That's how it is between Salzburg and myself. I will continue to work hard for that. I want to develop more and become a man."

Given the talents Salzburg and their Red Bull sister club RB Leipzig have produced in recent years, few would doubt Adeyemi's in the right place to spread his wings.

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