Colombian football fans around the world are currently covertly inquiring if it’s possible to swap a Real Madrid jersey (only 3 years of use!) for a brand new Bayern Munich one, as it was announced today that the Colombian superstar will join the German giants on a two-year loan deal. Bayern will spend about €5 million a year on the loan deal, with an option to sign James permanently at the end of the deal for €35.2 million.
This puts to bed months of speculation regarding the 25 year old’s future, having fallen out of favour with Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane following just over 3 years with the Spanish and European champions. James signed for Real following a breakout World Cup campaign with Colombia, where he claimed both the Golden Boot and Goal of the Tournament awards. He was coached in that first – successful – season at Real by Carlo Ancelotti. Ancelotti is now the manager of Bayern Munich and was keen to be reunited with the star. James had been strongly linked with English clubs Manchester United and Chelsea in recent weeks, and this move has come as something of a surprise.
According to Bayern CEO Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge:”We are delighted to have realised this transfer. It was our coach Carlo Ancelotti’s big wish to sign James Rodriguez, following their successful spell working together in Madrid. James is a versatile player. He’s dangerous in front of the goal, sets up a lot of strikes and takes great set pieces.”
On a personal note, this is not normally the kind of article that we write on the Colombia Travel Blog, but my time here in Colombia has been so defined by the ups and downs of James’ career: I arrived just before the World Cup during full-on Falcao mourning, when James was nothing but a prospect and watched him go from top-tip to expensive Galactico in just a few months. He might have fallen out of favour at Real (and I really wanted him to sign for my club, Man Utd!) but he has all the attributes to become one of the world’s finest players, and Bayern is the perfect club for him to move forward in his career. Good luck James! Now where can I get a Bayern Munich shirt at this hour…