Bayern loan out Zirkzee, US youngster Richards

Berlin (AFP) – Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich confirmed the loan departures of Chris Richards and Joshua Zirkzee on Monday, while naming Liverpool and Chelsea as their main rivals to sign French defender Dayot Upamecano.

Speaking to Sky Sports News, Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed that 19-year-old Dutch forward Zirkzee was set to join Italian club Parma on loan.

“He wasn’t happy at Bayern,” said Rummenigge, who also confirmed that Parma had the option to buy Zirkzee outright for 15 million euros ($18 million) should they avoid relegation this season.

USA youth international Richards meanwhile joined Bundesliga rivals Hoffenheim on a six-month loan deal.

The 20-year-old defender follows a path previously trodden by teammate David Alaba, who spent six months at Hoffenheim in 2011 before breaking into the Bayern first team.

Alaba himself looks set to leave Bayern in the summer, with Rummenigge telling Sky that the 28-year-old’s departure was “99.9 percent” certain.

The Bayern CEO also reaffirmed the club’s interest in RB Leipzig and France defender Upamecano as a possible replacement for Alaba.

Yet he admitted that English Premier League clubs Chelsea and Liverpool were also in the race.

“There are at least two other attractive competitors,” said Rummenigge.

“When clubs like Chelsea and Liverpool are interested in him, it shows what quality the player has,” he added.

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