Thomas Muller believes Bayern Munich were not prepared to take enough risks in order to defeat RB Leipzig in Sunday's Bundesliga showdown.

The German top-flight's top two sides clashed at Allianz Arena but neither team managed to come out with the spoils in a goalless draw.

It was not for a lack of trying, with Marcel Sabitzer and Timo Werner missing great chances for the visitors while Peter Gulacsi pulled off a superb save to deny Leon Goretzka late on.

However, Muller suggested Bayern's performance was not brave enough to warrant three points.

"There was a lot in it, but there was nothing in it at the same time. We missed making the game our game," Muller told Sky Sports Germany.

"The problem was that both teams could live a little with the 0-0. From the 70th minute, neither team wanted to take the absolute risk.

"We did not have this energy, this absolute will to win. We have a situation that we wanted somewhere. We will continue on our way and have it in our own hands."

Bayern still lead the way in the Bundesliga by one point, though Borussia Monchengladbach – who sit fourth, just four points adrift – now have a game in hand, and Hansi Flick is expecting the title race to go down to the wire.

"The first half was better. Then the seriousness in our game got lost. In the end you just have to say it was a deserved 0-0," Flick said.

"We know that there are still 13 game days and that it is still a hard way to become the champion in the end.

"That is what everyone wants – an exciting championship to be played, and I believe that we will do it justice this year."

Thomas Muller says he is "not interested" in returning to the Germany squad after Joachim Low rated his chances of a recall as "relatively low".

Head coach Low shocked German football in March 2019 when he announced World Cup-winning stalwarts Muller, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng were no longer in his plans.

Muller, who has 100 caps for Germany, said at the time he was "totally dumbfounded by this decision out of the blue".

The 30-year-old has been in fine form since the turn of the year, scoring in four consecutive games for Bayern before Sunday's 0-0 draw with Bundesliga title rivals RB Leipzig at the Allianz Arena.

Some had suggested this could be enough to persuade Low to reconsider his position on Muller, but the Germany coach told Sky on Sunday: "The probability [of a recall] is relatively low if everyone is fit.

"Thomas has scored a few times in the second half of the season. I am pleased, but I said we would go with the young players. That is what we have to maintain.

"However, if things should happen that you do not expect, it is clear you will have to look again."

Speaking after the draw with Leipzig, Muller said: "I'm not interested in it at all. I care about this team [Bayern] and winning trophies with them, ideally three."

Sunday's result means Bayern remain one point ahead of Leipzig at the Bundesliga summit.

Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller impressed but Bayern Munich made hard work of beating Hoffenheim 4-3 to reach the DFB-Pokal quarter-finals.

Holders Bayern appeared to be cruising into the last eight when Lewandowski put them 3-1 up at half-time on Wednesday, yet a lacklustre second-half showing gave Hoffenheim – who had taken the lead through Jerome Boateng's own goal – unexpected hope.

Bayern had quickly levelled when Benjamin Hubner put through his own goal before Muller – who had a hand in all three of the hosts' first-half goals – nosed them ahead.

Lewandowski's second made it 4-1 with 10 minutes to go before Munas Dabbur's late double set up the possibility of unlikely comeback that just fell short as Bayern ultimately did enough to book their progress.

Bayern thought they had the lead in the fifth minute, yet Muller had strayed marginally offside before he teed up Lewandowski and, against the run of play, the hosts were behind when Boateng sliced in Ihlas Bebou's strike.

But Hoffenheim's lead was short lived as Hubner, under pressure from Muller, was only able to turn Alphonso Davies' cross into his own net.

The turnaround was complete in the 20th minute, Muller sending a nonchalant side-foot volley beyond Philipp Pentke, who then made outstanding stops to deny Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry.

Lewandowski would not be denied again, though, heading into an empty net after Muller forced Pentke into a poor punch.

Pentke did well to prevent Lewandowski doubling his tally five minutes after the break, before Muller squandered a golden chance to get his second.

Steven Zuber had a goal disallowed for the visitors and Bayern extended the lead when Lewandowski headed in Joshua Kimmich's corner with 10 minutes remaining.

Sloppy Bayern defending gifted Dabbur his first as he dinked over Manuel Neuer and the substitute striker tapped home the rebound after Benjamin Pavard sliced Pavel Kaderabek's cross against the left post in the second minute of injury time to add to Bayern's nerves.

The hosts just about saw it out, though, to put their names into the hat for the last eight.

 

What does it mean? Flick on course for silverware but defence a cause for concern

Despite his struggles at Bayern, Niko Kovac did win the domestic double last season and Hansi Flick – who is surely in with a chance of getting the job permanently – will be eager to match his predecessor's achievements.

With Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig having both slipped out on Tuesday, Bayern are certainly the clear favourites to win the competition for what would be a 20th time, though they will have to be much more solid at the back in the next round.

Muller and Lewandowski lead the way

After a difficult season in 2018-19, Muller has been back to his best since Flick took charge and, along with Lewandowski, ultimately ensured Bayern's defensive lapses did not come back to cost the hosts on Wednesday.

Boateng and Pavard almost throw it away

It was a woeful start for Boateng, who made a mess of attempting to clear Bebou's effort and the former Manchester City man was lucky not to net a second own goal in the second half when he deflected a strike just over the bar.

Pavard, meanwhile, made a poor mistake for Hoffenheim's final goal and – along with the rest of the defence – was guilty of overplaying when Dabbur made it 4-2.

What's next?

The Bundesliga's top two face off when Bayern host RB Leipzig on Sunday, while Hoffenheim are in action against Freiburg a day earlier.

Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller impressed but Bayern Munich made hard work of beating Hoffenheim 4-3 to reach the DFB-Pokal quarter-finals.

Holders Bayern appeared to be cruising into the last eight when Lewandowski put them 3-1 up at half-time on Wednesday, yet a lacklustre second-half showing gave Hoffenheim – who had taken the lead through Jerome Boateng’s own goal – unexpected hope.

Bayern had quickly levelled when Benjamin Hubner put through his own goal before Muller – who had a hand in all three of the hosts' first-half goals – nosed them ahead.

Lewandowski's second made it 4-1 with 10 minutes to go before Munas Dabbur's late double set up the possibility of unlikely comeback that just fell short as Bayern ultimately did enough to book their progress.

Bayern thought they had the lead in the fifth minute, yet Muller had strayed marginally offside before he teed up Lewandowski and, against the run of play, the hosts were behind when Boateng sliced in Ihlas Bebou's strike.

But Hoffenheim's lead was short lived as Hubner, under pressure from Muller, was only able to turn Alphonso Davies' cross into his own net.

The turnaround was complete in the 20th minute, Muller sending a nonchalant side-foot volley beyond Philipp Pentke, who then made outstanding stops to deny Lewandowski and Serge Gnabry.

Lewandowski would not be denied again, though, heading into an empty net after Muller forced Pentke into a poor punch.

Pentke did well to prevent Lewandowski doubling his tally five minutes after the break, before Muller squandered a golden chance to get his second.

Steven Zuber had a goal disallowed for the visitors and Bayern extended the lead when Lewandowski headed in Joshua Kimmich's corner with 10 minutes remaining.

Sloppy Bayern defending gifted Dabbur his first as he dinked over Manuel Neuer and the substitute striker tapped home the rebound after Benjamin Pavard sliced Pavel Kaderabek's cross against the left post in the second minute of injury time to add to Bayern's nerves.

The hosts just about saw it out, though, to put their names into the hat for the last eight.

Hansi Flick reflected on a "very successful day" after Bayern Munich dismantled Schalke to capitalise on Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig's defeat earlier on Saturday.

Defending champions Bayern won 5-0 at home to move within a point of Leipzig, who were beaten 2-0 at Eintracht Frankfurt.

Head coach Flick was delighted with the way his side disrupted Schalke, a side also on the fringes of the title picture in fifth place.

Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Muller, Leon Goretzka, Thiago Alcantara and Serge Gnabry were all on target.

"That was very good," Flick said. "Schalke were really impressive in the first game [of 2020] against Gladbach. But we play here at home and wanted to play our game, our philosophy.

"We wanted to disrupt the opponent early, put pressure on them early with a high intensity. We did this very well, especially in the first half.

"It was crucial that we got the three points. This must give us even more confidence. The quality in the squad is excellent, and if I can then lift them as I did here, I am very satisfied.

"It was, of course, a very successful day for us."

Muller, who scored his 100th goal at Allianz Arena, suggested Bayern were motivated by Leipzig's defeat.

"After the Leipzig result, we might have had a little more," he said. "Usually, there is only the 100 per cent - today there was maybe two or three per cent on top.

"Like against Dortmund [a 4-0 home win in November], we didn't want to give Schalke space. We are very happy with the game. We played well as a team."

Bayern Munich took advantage of RB Leipzig's slip up to move one point behind the Bundesliga leaders with a 5-0 demolition of Schalke.

Buoyed by Leipzig's defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt earlier on Saturday, Hansi Flick's side were dominant from the off at Allianz Arena, leading from the sixth minute when Robert Lewandowski lashed in his 21st league goal of the season.

Thomas Muller bookended a fine first-half display, with the terrific Leon Goretzka striking against his previous club with a sensational scissor-kick five minutes after the break.

Thiago Alcantara helped himself to a simple finish as the hosts ran riot, with a blunder from goalkeeper Markus Schubert – playing in place of the suspended Alexander Nubel, who will join Bayern at the end of the season – enabling Serge Gnabry to complete the scoring in the 89th minute.

Manuel Neuer's mistake handed Suat Serdar an early chance but his effort was tame and Schalke punished when Lewandowski thumped home after Schubert failed to deal with a cross into box.

Muller rightly had a goal disallowed for offside, before Schubert pulled off a fine save from Goretzka's close-range header.

Former Schalke star Goretzka did brilliantly to tee up Lewandowski for what appeared to be Bayern's second, only for VAR to deem Benjamin Pavard had strayed offside.

Schalke's luck ran out in first-half stoppage time – Muller nudging in his 100th goal at the Allianz Arena after connecting with Goretzka's cushioned header.

Schubert brilliantly denied David Alaba and Thiago in quick succession, but Bayern had their third when Goretzka volleyed in his first Bundesliga goal of the campaign.

Schalke's misery was added to eight minutes later, Lewandowski toying with Omar Mascarell before laying it on a plate for Thiago.

Bayern were not done there, however, and the hosts had their fifth when Schubert completely misjudged a curling effort from Gnabry and diverted it into his own net.

 

What does it mean? Pressure back on Leipzig

Julian Nagelsmann's side's 2-0 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt handed Bayern even more impetus and the Bundesliga champions are now in touching distance of leaders Leipzig.

It is turning out to be an enthralling title race, with Borussia Monchengladbach and Borussia Dortmund are also in the running.

Bayern host Leipzig on February 9 in what looks set to be a pivotal fixture.

Goretzka gives Schalke the blues

While Lewandowski has now scored in his past nine league appearances against Schalke, Goretzka was the fulcrum for Bayern. He teed up Muller before rounding off his performance with an exquisite finish.

Schalke's Bayern nightmare rumbles on

Schalke have now suffered 54 Bundesliga defeats to Bayern in 100 meetings, conceding 214 goals in the process, and are without a win against them in 19 matches.

What's next?

Bayern visit struggling Mainz in a week, while Schalke travel to the capital to face Hertha Berlin on Friday.

Bayern Munich boss Hansi Flick praised his players for turning on the style in the second half to see off Hertha Berlin 4-0 at the Olympiastadion.

The reigning Bundesliga champions scored four goals in the final half-hour of Sunday's match to climb into second place, four points behind RB Leipzig.

Thomas Muller opened the scoring and Robert Lewandowski added a second from the penalty spot to pave the way for an ultimately emphatic win.

Thiago Alcantara and Ivan Perisic were also on target as Bayern made it four league wins in a row and back-to-back away victories in the competition for the first time since March.

Flick was pleased to begin the second half of the campaign with all three points against a Hertha side that had not conceded in their past three outings.

"A four-nil win – not every team in Berlin can do that!" he said at his post-match news conference. 

"I think we deservedly won. In the first game after the [mid-season] break, with such a short preparation, it is not always so easy to know where you are. 

"So, it was great for us that we started the second half of the season with such a result."

Muller scored the all-important breakthrough goal and, in the process, became the first player to net every calendar year in the German top flight since 2009.

The Germany international, who also set up Perisic to make it 12 league assists for the campaign to go with his three goals, told Sky Sport Germany: "We made them tired.

"The gaps got bigger in the second half. In my opinion, we played too patiently in the first half. We didn't play bad, but we weren't really that dangerous.

"We let Hertha play in the first half, but in the second half we kept going."

Hertha boss Jurgen Klinsmann, who spent a season in charge of Bayern in 2008-09, claimed the game turned on the 72nd-minute penalty awarded to Bayern.

Lukas Klunter was adjudged to have pulled back on Leon Goretzka inside the box with the scoreline at 1-0 and Lewandowski made no mistake from the spot.

Hertha's first loss in five outings leaves them two points above the bottom two zone and Klinsmann told reporters: "Four goals is a bit much. I think we played well for an hour.

"We had two or three chances in the first half. Then the first goal comes, but I think the sticking point was certainly the penalty – it broke us a little.

"We have to get points against the teams that are around us in the lower half of the table."

Bayern Munich produced a much-improved second-half showing to overcome Hertha Berlin 4-0 at the Olympiastadion and climb into second place in the Bundesliga.

Hertha entered Sunday's game unbeaten in four matches, keeping a clean sheet in three of those, and they held firm until the hour mark on Sunday when Thomas Muller opened the scoring.

Robert Lewandowski added another goal to his tally from the penalty spot and Thiago Alcantara scored a thunderous third as the reigning champions turned on the style in the capital.

A fourth top-flight win in a row was rounded off by Ivan Perisic's late header as Hansi Flick's men recorded back-to-back away league wins for the first time since March and leapfrogged Borussia Monchengladbach into second spot, four points behind RB Leipzig.

Lewandowski squandered a big chance to put Bayern ahead after 25 minutes, the Poland international poking wide when put under pressure by Rune Jarstein.

The Hertha goalkeeper was equal to Lewandowski's next attempt and also easily dealt with weak efforts from Philippe Coutinho and Perisic in a goalless first half.

Perisic twice went close early in the second half and played a big part in Bayern's eventual breakthrough, climbing highest to head Leon Goretzka's cross into the path of Muller, who rifled home on the half-volley.

Bayern were denied an instant second by VAR, with Lewandowski adjudged to have headed the ball out of Jarstein's hands before tapping it over the line.

However, Lewandowski did manage to double his side's tally with 17 minutes remaining, converting from the penalty spot after Lukas Klunter pulled Goretzka back in the box.

Thiago picked out the top corner to put Bayern out of sight after finding a pocket of space and Perisic rounded off an ultimately emphatic win with a back-post header.

Thomas Muller will not make any decisions on his long-term Bayern Munich future until the end of the season.

The former Germany international has spent his entire professional career at the Allianz Arena, where he has won eight Bundesliga titles, five DFB-Pokals and a Champions League medal.

However, Muller admitted back in October he was considering his options after finding his game time limited under ex-boss Niko Kovac.

With Hansi Flick now at the helm, until at least the end of the campaign, the circumstances have changed again, though rumours suggesting Muller may fancy a new challenge persist.

The man himself does not plan to rush a decision.

Speaking to Sport1, he said: "My focus is exclusively on being successful this season.

"What will happen in the summer, I will talk to the club and consider my options. Then let's see in which direction things will go."

It was put to Muller that talk surrounding his future would be put to bed by signing a new deal, with his contract at Bayern due to expire in 2021.

He replied: "With such a thing, all parties have to put their arguments in the pot. Let's see if we can make an agreement there.

"You just have to compare what all parties want."

Bayern are third in the Bundesliga after 17 matches, four points adrift of leaders RB Leipzig.

Philippe Coutinho turned in a dazzling display as Bayern Munich came from behind to beat Werder Bremen 6-1 in the Bundesliga.

On-loan Barcelona playmaker Coutinho scored a hat-trick and laid on another for Robert Lewandowski, who continued his prolific campaign with a brace.

Bayern headed into the match on the back of consecutive league losses to Bayern Leverkusen and Borussia Monchengladbach and Bremen deservedly led at the Allianz Arena through a fabulous Milot Rashica strike.

But those struggles felt a lifetime ago by the time Coutinho set up substitute Thomas Muller for the fifth, while the former completed the rout with a brilliant finish from the edge of the area.

Rashica spurned his first opening of the contest, streaking clear of the Bayern defence only to lose his footing in the penalty area, but he atoned in the 24th minute - spinning into space on halfway and driving at Jerome Boateng to lash in a stunning long-range strike.

Bremen goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka sharply denied Lewandowski and Coutinho, but the two attackers would decisively turn the game on the stroke of half-time.

Coutinho tapped in at the far post from Serge Gnabry's low cross after Josh Kimmich's chipped pass opened Bremen up.

Theodor Gebre Selassie was substituted after injuring his knee in the process of trying to stop the equaliser and the right-hand side of the visitors' defence was exposed as Coutinho played in Lewandowski to equalise in stoppage time.

Bremen retained their threat on the break, with the livewire Rashica slicing wide after tearing at the Bayern defence, yet Coutinho put daylight between the teams after the hour, lobbing a bouncing ball from David Alaba over the helpless Pavlenka.

Muller came on for Leon Goretzka with 20 minutes to play and his old alliance with Lewandowski yielded number four, the Poland star darting on to a chipped return pass for his 18th Bundesliga goal of the season.

Muller then got in on the act himself with a close-range finish – Coutinho the provider before claiming the matchball with a trademark curling effort that arced beyond the diving Pavlenka to find the net via the upright.

Bayern Munich spurned a host of chances as Leon Bailey's double earned 10-man Bayer Leverkusen a 2-1 win and inflicted a first defeat on Hansi Flick.

The champions had won each of their four matches without conceding since Flick was named interim boss following Niko Kovac's sacking, but they came unstuck in Saturday's Bundesliga clash at the Allianz Arena.

Thomas Muller scored his first goal in 21 league matches to cancel out Bailey's early opener, only for the Leverkusen winger to restore his side's advantage 115 seconds later.

Despite Jonathan Tah being dismissed nine minutes from time, a mixture of poor finishing and impressive goalkeeping from Lukas Hradecky left Bayern – who rattled the woodwork late on through Leon Goretzka and an unusually wasteful Robert Lewandowski – frustrated as they lost further ground in the title race.

Serge Gnabry hit the post after being played in by an incisive David Alaba pass and, 45 seconds later, Bailey charged through at the other end before firing a shot across Manuel Neuer to open the scoring.

Some heroic defending from Wendell denied Lewandowski a simple tap-in but Bayern were soon on level terms, Muller's shot deflecting off Sven Bender on its way past Lukas Hradecky.

The visitors instantly hit the front again through Bailey, though. The winger played a one-two with Kevin Volland, raced away from Javi Martinez and slotted past Neuer to double his tally.

Gnabry squandered a glorious chance to draw Bayern level late in the first half as he squared the ball instead of shooting when one-on-one, with Lars Bender blocking the pass.

Neuer was required early in the second period to keep out Nadiem Amiri's close-range shot, but it was Flick's men who were enjoying the lion's share of chances.

Lewandowski was wayward from 10 yards and Hradecky produced a double save to thwart the Poland international and Muller in quick succession.

Goretzka and Lewandowski both sent headers crashing against the woodwork, either side of Tah being shown a red card for bringing down substitute Philippe Coutinho, but there was to be no equaliser for the champions. 

What does it mean? Reality check for Bayern

Emphatic back-to-back Bundesliga victories for Bayern had them firmly back in the title race, with talk of caretaker boss Flick potentially landing the job on a full-time basis.

This defeat is very much a reality check for the Bavarian club, however, leaving them fourth in the table and now three points behind RB Leipzig, who beat Paderborn 3-2 earlier on Saturday, while if Borussia Monchengladbach defeat Freiburg on Sunday they will be four off the pace.

Bayern battered by Bailey

Bailey had gone six matches without a goal prior to this trip to Bavaria but looked at his scintillating best in the first half.

Bayern were unable to contain the winger, who put his pace to good use and twice kept his cool when through on goal.

Lewandowski kept quiet

Lewandowski scored at least once in 11 consecutive Bundesliga matches, but he has now fired blanks in back-to-back league matches.

The Poland international missed a one-on-one in the first half, though it would not have counted as he was offside, and looked off the pace thereafter - bar a brilliant late header that was unfortunate to hit the bar.

What's next?

Bayern return to action next Saturday with a trip to high-flying Borussia Monchengladbach, while Leverkusen host Schalke on the same day.

Bayern Munich maintained their 100 per cent record under Hansi Flick and closed the gap on Bundesliga leaders Borussia Monchengladbach to one point with a dominant 4-0 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf.

The champions had suffered a shocking 5-1 defeat in their last away game three weeks ago - a result that brought an end to Niko Kovac's tenure as head coach - but they were on the right side of a thumping victory on this occasion.

Goals from Benjamin Pavard, Corentin Tolisso and Serge Gnabry put the game beyond Dusseldorf inside 34 minutes and ensured a superb first-half performance from Bayern was suitably rewarded.

With three points secured, the Bavarians did not hit the same heights after the interval but Philippe Coutinho added a fourth goal and they have now won each of their three games under interim coach Flick, scoring 10 and conceding none.

The only surprise was Robert Lewandowski's failure to score for the first time this season in the Bundesliga, the striker having managed 16 goals in Bayern's first 11 games.

Flick's men were ahead inside 11 minutes. A short corner from Thomas Muller found Joshua Kimmich all alone and his low cross towards Pavard found its way into the net, with uncertainty over whether the full-back or Dusseldorf's Alfredo Morales had got a touch.

Both Lewandowski and Coutinho went close before a dismal error from Dusseldorf goalkeeper Zack Steffen enabled the visitors to score a second. Under little pressure, Steffen passed the ball straight to Muller and Dusseldorf's scrambling defenders were unable to recover as Gnabry's cross was converted by Tolisso.

The game was effectively ended as a contest when Gnabry scored himself, after the influential Muller had turned Pavard's low cross into his path.

After the hosts' best spell of the game, during which Rouwen Hennings spurned a great opportunity, Lewandowksi diverted an effort wide at the near post and then saw a powerful header tipped away by Steffen.

The Poland forward did claim an assist with 20 minutes remaining, though, as he beat his man on the left of the area and clipped in a cross that narrowly evaded Muller but left Coutinho with a tap-in.

 

What does it mean? Flick making strong case to keep control

Speaking during the international break, Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed Flick would remain in charge "at least until Christmas and possibly beyond". The response of the club's players to his appointment suggests there is no need to rush the search for a full-time successor to Kovac. Put simply, Bayern look like Bayern once again and Gladbach's 2-0 loss at Union Berlin means they are now right on the leaders’ heels.

Magnificent Muller on song

Having been in and out of Bayern's starting XI under Kovac this season, Muller has started all three games under Flick and was integral to this win. The experienced forward was involved in all four goals, while a glorious first-half flick to Lewandowski summed up his confident display.

Steffen shocker punished

Steffen will not want to see replays of Bayern's second goal. His sloppy pass put Dusseldorf in all sorts of trouble and the visitors were in no mood to pass up such a golden chance.

What's next?

Bayern will look to maintain their momentum under Flick when they face Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League on Tuesday. Their next league game is at home to Bayer Leverkusen next Saturday, the same day Dusseldorf travel to Hoffenheim.

Thomas Muller brought up an impressive landmark during Bayern Munich's Klassiker showdown with Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.

Former Germany forward Muller set up Serge Gnabry to put the reigning Bundesliga champions 2-0 up at the Allianz Arena.

It was a 100th assist in Germany's top flight for the 30-year-old, who has set up more goals than any other player in the competition since Opta started collecting this data in 2004-05.

Muller's former Bayern team-mate Franck Ribery supplied 92, while Gonzalo Castro (67), Dortmund captain Marco Reus (62) and Max Kruse (60) complete the top five.

Robert Lewandowski continued his phenomenal record of scoring in every Bundesliga and Champions League game this season during the first half.

Take your pick: Real Madrid, Barcelona or Manchester City?

Napoli star Fabian Ruiz is in demand following his exploits in Serie A since leaving Real Betis in 2018.

LaLiga giants Madrid are keen to bring Spanish midfielder Fabian to the Santiago Bernabeu.

 

TOP STORY – MADRID STEPPING UP FABIAN INTEREST

Real Madrid are prepared to offer €20million and Isco for Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz, according to Mundo Deportivo.

In-demand Napoli star Fabian is wanted by Madrid, LaLiga champions Barcelona and Premier League holders Manchester City.

Fabian swapped Real Betis for Napoli in 2018 and Madrid are determined to bring the Spain international to the Santiago Bernabeu, though Napoli are reportedly uninterested in an exchange and wanted a bigger transfer fee.

 

ROUND-UP

- According the Mirror, Manchester United have been given the green light for a £125million double swoop to sign Bayer Leverkusen star Kai Havertz and Bayern Munich forward Thomas Muller. Havertz is wanted by Europe's elite, while Muller is searching for more game time.

United have been put off signing Real Madrid's Gareth Bale due to his injury record, reports the Daily Mail. Bale's name continues to be mentioned amid Madrid's interest in United midfielder Paul Pogba.

Inter are ready to make January bids for Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal and Manchester United's Nemanja Matic, according to Corriere della Sera. Sport also claims Inter are in talks with Barca for Ivan Rakitic.

- AS claims Barcelona want Netherlands boss Ronald Koeman to replace head coach Ernesto Valverde, who is out of contract at season's end. PSV's Mark van Bommel is also on the list of alternatives.

Manchester City are set to offer Wayne Rooney's son Kai the chance to join their academy, says the Mirror. Kai joined City in 2016 during Wayne's time at Premier League rivals Manchester United.

- Soccer Link reports Lyon are open to selling Manchester United target and star striker Moussa Dembele.

Bayern Munich sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic strongly dismissed reports linking Thomas Muller with a January exit from the Bundesliga champions.

Muller has been heavily linked to struggling Premier League giants Manchester United and Serie A outfit Inter since revealing he was considering his future at Bayern.

Frustrated with his lack of game time under Niko Kovac, Germany international Muller has started Bayern's last two matches, including Saturday's 2-1 win over Union Berlin.

Amid the speculation regarding Muller, Salihamidzic told Sky Sport pre-game: "We have two long-term injuries, and you're trying to convince us that we're giving someone up.

"This is a novel you write all the time. We are not thinking about the players we should give up but looking to bring the team back to running again and playing stable football."

After the match, which was won by Benjamin Pavard and Robert Lewandowski, Muller joked about the rumours.

"I've heard that it will be colder here from Monday, then I have the change in air here too," the 30-year-old said.

Muller emerged from Bayern's youth system in 2008, and he has since won eight Bundesliga trophies with the Bavarian powerhouse.

He has also celebrated Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA Club World Cup, DFB-Pokal and DFL-Supercup titles during his time in Munich.

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