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Bayern target Timo Werner set to leave Leipzig – club CEO

Berlin (AFP) – RB Leipzig CEO Oliver Mintzlaff admitted on Saturday that Bayern Munich target Timo Werner is on the verge of leaving the club. 

Germany striker Werner joined Leipzig in 2016 and has scored 59 goals in 108 games for the Bundesliga side. 

He has been frequently linked with a move to champions Bayern, and touted as a long-term replacement for star striker Robert Lewandowski.

With his contract set to expire in 2020, Leipzig had hoped that Werner would sign an extension, but on Saturday, CEO Mintzlaff admitted that this was now unlikely.

“It’s well-known that we want to keep hold of him and extend his contract, but he has indicated that he does not want to sign an extension,” Mintzlaff told Sky.

“We are in reasonable discussions with him and we will find a solution that suits everybody. We have to see what the right thing to do is, for us and for Timo.”

Werner openly flirted with a move to Bayern earlier in the season, telling Sky that “there is only one club in Germany” for whom he would leave Leipzig.

According to Bild, Leipzig are set to demand around 60 million euros ($67.9m) for Werner this summer, though they risk losing him on a free transfer when his contract expires next summer if Bayern baulk at the sum. 

In March, Leipzig coach and sporting director Ralf Rangnick ruled out allowing Werner to leave for free, prompting an icy response from Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge on the issue. 

“I would advise Leipzig not to be so aggressive, because sometimes you can be wrong,” said Rummenigge. 

Bayern president Uli Hoeness has been more reticent, however. Asked whether Werner was a transfer target in a recent chat show appearance on Sport1, Hoeness responded with a twinkle in his eye.

“Timo Werner? Is he a footballer?” he said. 

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