Leroy Sané's move to Bayern makes sense for everyone ... even City

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Dan Burke

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It’s not 100% official yet, but it’s as near as dammit.

“It’s not already done, there are still some little issues, but it looks like he’ll go to Munich. I wish him all the best,” said Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola when asked about Leroy Sané on Wednesday.

And when those “little issues” are eventually ironed out, this will be a good deal for Sané, a good deal for Bayern and even a good deal for City too.

The biggest winners are, of course, Bayern.

Fresh off the back of their eighth successive Bundesliga title, the German Rekordmeister are about to get even stronger by adding a world class winger to their ranks for a bargain fee.

Sané may have flattered to deceive at international level so far but make no mistake about it, the 24-year-old is a far superior player to the kid who left Schalke four years ago and in time, he will prove himself to Germany.

He’s as fast as a galloping race horse, he’s intelligent, he can pass and he can finish with the best of them.

He has the potential to be a future Ballon d’Or winner, no doubt about it.

Joining Bayern Munich is the stuff dreams are made of for many young German players and not only will Sané reportedly be getting a very nice pay rise, he will be regarded as one of the biggest stars at one of the biggest clubs in Europe.

He is the player Bayern have been crying out for since Arjen Robben and Franck Ribéry left and, unless something goes terribly wrong, he’s pretty much guaranteed to be one of the first names on the team-sheet.

Just close your eyes for a second and imagine how much damage a left flank featuring Sané AND Alphonso Davies could do next season. Frightening, isn’t it?

And perhaps one of the motivating factors in Sané’s desire to return to the Bundesliga is the pain of being left out of Germany’s 2018 World Cup squad.

With the Euros coming up next summer, he probably feels he can’t risk missing out again, and Joachim Löw will no doubt be watching him closer than ever over the next 12 months.

At this point you might be wondering how this could possibly be a good deal for City.

Well, on the face of it, losing a player who is worth easily €100m+ for between €50m and €60m is not good business.

If Guardiola hadn’t decided to play Sané in the Community Shield last August, Sané might never have got that ACL injury and Bayern would have been forced to fork out something closer to what he’s actually worth.

But then, this is Bayern we’re talking about. The world champions of hardball have been lowballing City since day one and there’s no guarantee they wouldn’t have waited until this summer (when Sané would have been entering the final year of his contract) to pick him up for a knock-down price anyway.

So in the context of Sané’s contract situation, his obvious desire to return to Germany and the small matter of the global pandemic we’re still in the midst of, €50m potentially rising to €60m isn’t such a bad deal at all. It’s better than nothing, that’s for sure.

And it’s worth remembering that before that injury at Wembley, Sané was struggling to get a game at City.

His first season in Manchester was exciting, his second season was stunning, but his third was a bit of a mixed bag and towards the end of the season, he barely featured as City chased down the Premier League title.

His last competitive goal for the club came in a win away at Manchester United in April 2019 but after starting at Burnley in the following match, he was so bad he was taken off after 64 minutes.

That’s not to detract from his brilliance but there were signs throughout 2018/19 that Sané was no longer a well suited wide-man for a team which prefers inverted wingers more often that not.

City are losing a superb player but they now have at least €50m to re-invest in a replacement who actually wants to be there and you never know, things just might work out alright for them.

“I give him big thanks for these years together and I wish him all the best in a fantastic club,” said Guardiola on Wednesday.

“He wants to leave – everyone has their own life. I would have loved him to stay here, but he decided to leave, he thinks he’ll be better and happier, so I’ve nothing to say.”

Don’t be sad that he’s leaving, City fans. Like Pep, be glad that he came at all.