Renowned as one of the best central defenders in the game today, AS Roma and Morocco centre back Mehdi Benatia has reportedly agreed to personal terms with Bayern Munich. The Bundesliga champions are keen to bring in a new recruit at the back following the injury to Javi Martinez, which has seen the Spaniard ruled out for the rest of 2014 and beyond.
Pep Guardiola has brought in four summer signings so far, all in different positions, with Pepe Reina, Robert Lewandowski, Juan Bernat and Sebastian Rode bolstering a talent-rich side. Following a major injury to Martinez, Guardiola – who was reportedly keen to stay away from the transfer market – may be forced to dip his toes into the transfer kitty once again.
According to reports, the Spaniard’s top target comes in the form of Mehdi Benatia, who was one of the star performers in Roma’s Serie A second place finish last season. The news comes just days after respected Sky Sports journalist Jim White reported that Benatia was on a flight to England ahead of discussing personal terms with Manchester United, who have since signed Marcos Rojo to fill the #5 shirt.
— Jim White (@JimWhite) August 16, 2014
With United offloading Nani and the #17 jersey becoming available, a move for Roma’s current-#17 Benatia could still be on the cards. The Moroccan is rumoured to be keen on playing Champions League football, something which United are unable to offer due to their 7th place finish last season. The Manchester side’s league rivals Chelsea have also been linked to the player following the sale of David Luiz to Paris St. Germain.
While Roma are keen to extend the contract of Benatia, Bayern Munich is an appealing option for the 27 year-old. The only blip in the deal thusfar is the transfer fee, with Roma demanding around €35 million, €5 million short of Bayern’s reported offer.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 18, 2014