Bayern Munich head coach Niko Kovac is "convinced" he will still be in charge of the Bundesliga champions next season.

Kovac steered the German giants to a seventh consecutive league title on Saturday following a 5-1 win over his former club Eintracht Frankfurt.

His position has come under intense speculation throughout the season, with suggestions that he could still lose his job even if he secures a domestic double in next weekend's DFB-Pokal final against RB Leipzig.

Kovac, though, remains defiant and insists he will still be in charge at the Allianz Arena for the 2019-20 campaign.

"I have information in the background, and I am convinced that I will continue," he told Sky.

Asked if the club has told him that he would definitely be Bayern coach next season, Kovac smiled and said: "Yes, we'll put it that way."

Supporters chanted Kovac's name after the game, and the visibly moved 47-year-old added: "Of course it touches you.

"I'm made of flesh and blood like everyone else. The fans have a good feeling for what we've done."

When Paco Alcacer strode forward and beat Manuel Neuer with a delightfully nonchalant dink in November to secure Borussia Dortmund a 3-2 win over troubled Bayern Munich, German football looked reignited.

Dortmund were sitting pretty at the top of the Bundesliga after 11 games with 27 points, seven clear of fifth-placed Bayern, while they were attracting adulation from across Europe for their vibrant football and faith in youth.

It was only their second victory in seven Klassiker contests in all competitions and the improvement was clear to see from their 6-0 dismantling at the Allianz Arena just over seven months prior.

As for Bayern, they were in something of a crisis by their standards. It was the second game in a run of three league outings without a win – a streak they also endured across September and October – and the future of new coach Niko Kovac was already mired in uncertainty.

Bayern's stranglehold on German football appeared to be slipping, but fast-forward six months and they are again lifting the 'salad bowl' after a 5-1 battering of Eintracht Frankfurt with Dortmund having to settle for second. The hope that things were about to change in German football has quickly evaporated.

 

IS KOVAC THE RIGHT MAN?

Bayern's campaign has been dominated by debate over whether Kovac is up to coaching such a massive club, having made the leap from Eintracht, whose expectations were rather more modest.

Even with Bayern crowned champions, Kovac's future is clouded. Media reports constantly link other coaches – such as Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho – with the job. There is every chance they could win a domestic double and still opt for change.

Some players are reported to have been frustrated by Kovac's training methods and tactics, while a bust-up between Kingsley Coman and Robert Lewandowski in April suggested there are still issues to iron out.

Lewandowski also criticised Kovac's tactics after their Champions League elimination at the hands of Liverpool in March. There has been little to suggest the Croatian is in complete control.

 

POWER STRUGGLE

In fairness to Kovac, his position has hardly been helped by those in charge at the club, particularly the eminently vocal CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

After the 5-0 demolition of Dortmund on April 6, Rummenigge seemingly remained indifferent towards the coach with his response to the question of whether Kovac had secured another season at the helm. He said: "There is no job guarantee at Bayern for anyone."

He then brought up the selection policy used by Kovac during their early-season woes, saying the problems were all "self-inflicted" because "the coach was rotating all over the place".

Club president Uli Hoeness was similarly critical of the rotation back in October, telling Kovac he was putting his "neck on the line" with such a policy, though he has largely been more measured than Rummenigge.

Hoeness had suggested Kovac could still be in charge next season even if Bayern did not win the title, though one thing is clear; an apparent power struggle between two strong characters in the hierarchy is unlikely to be helpful for the coach.

 

INEXPERIENCED DORTMUND CANNOT GO THE DISTANCE

Luckily for Bayern and Kovac, Dortmund have not exactly been problem-free themselves. Despite their undoubted brilliance in the first half of the season, they have endured two difficult runs since the turn of the year.

A hamstring injury to Marco Reus in February did not help matters, while their defensive options have been depleted for much of the season and inexperience arguably contributed to several big-game collapses.

Alcacer's form has tailed off somewhat as well. The former Barcelona striker scored 12 Bundesliga goals before January, but he has only managed to add another six in 2019.

In a deeper squad that may not have been an issue, yet there is no natural like-for-like replacement in the squad, with the rest of their forwards generally more comfortable out wide or in supporting roles.

Bayern have also been dogged by injury problems, yet they have been able to ride the storm.

 

BAYERN REIGN SUPREME DESPITE TRANSITION

With a new coach at the helm and experienced players coming to the end of the line at the club, this season was seen as the start of a transition for Bayern, a period that made them vulnerable.

Their tally of 78 points is the second-lowest haul a Bundesliga-winning side has managed in a single campaign since 2009-10, when the division was rather more competitive as only 15 points separated top from sixth.

That proves there was an opportunity for their rivals to capitalise, but still a youthful, exciting Dortmund side has fallen short and RB Leipzig ultimately paid the price for starting the campaign poorly.

With Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben departing and set to be replaced by fresh signings in what will likely be another busy transfer window for Bayern, Dortmund and the rest might sense one more opportunity next season if the Bavarians' sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic gets things wrong.

But on the evidence of this term – and the fact Die Roten have already shelled out approximately €115 million on Lucas Hernandez and Benjamin Pavard – the Bundesliga remains a grim procession that Bayern cannot lose even when they are some way below their usual standard.

Bayern Munich have won the Bundesliga for the seventh year in a row, despite Borussia Dortmund pushing them harder than in recent seasons.

Lucien Favre's side have made great progress this term with a thrilling young side including stars such as Jadon Sancho, yet they may rue a missed opportunity in the 2018-19 season.

Dortmund made a flying start and led Bayern by seven points earlier in the campaign, only for the defending champions to come roaring back under Niko Kovac, capitalising on BVB's patchy post-Christmas form and sealing the title with Saturday's 5-1 hammering of Eintracht Frankfurt.

Omnisport looks back at nine key games that ensured the championship shield will be residing in Bavaria once again.


DORTMUND 3-2 BAYERN, 10/11/18

A superb start to the season for Favre's men was improved even further when Bayern were beaten 3-2 in the first Klassiker of the season at Signal Iduna Park. Robert Lewandowski twice gave Bayern the lead against his old side, but Dortmund captain Marco Reus equalised on both occasions. Paco Alcacer then came up with a memorable winner to ensure BVB could dream of the title.

WERDER BREMEN 1-2 BAYERN, 1/12/18

A third participant in the title race was arguably Werder, who played a key part in a number of results that would go on to decide the title. Bayern entered December on a run of three Bundesliga games without a win and pressure was building on Kovac. He needed a win and he got one in Bremen thanks to a Serge Gnabry double either side of Yuya Osako's goal.


DORTMUND 3-3 HOFFENHEIM, 9/2/19

Probably the result that proved the most damaging to Dortmund's previously sky-high belief; surrendering a three-goal lead at home to Hoffenheim was a hugely painful result to take. They were 3-0 up with 15 minutes to go but somehow failed to win the game, with Ishak Belfodil scoring twice in an incredible comeback from the visitors. This setback was the middle result of three consecutive league draws for Dortmund.


AUGSBURG 2-3 BAYERN, 15/2/19

Bayern had found their groove but Augsburg were difficult opponents, having drawn at Allianz Arena earlier in the campaign. A Friday night clash proved a classic in February as Bayern fell behind in the first minute due to Leon Goretzka's own goal. Kingsley Coman equalised twice - either side of a superb strike from Ji Dong-won - and the France forward set up David Alaba for a priceless winner early in the second half.


BAYERN 5-0 DORTMUND, 6/4/19

A run of three straight wins set Dortmund up for a virtual winner-takes-all Klassiker meeting in Munich. However, a first-half Bayern blitz essentially ended BVB's hopes of usurping the defending champions. Lewandowski hit Bayern's second and fifth goals after former BVB defender Mats Hummels had opened the scoring. That two of their old heroes contributed heavily to the humiliation would have especially hurt Dortmund supporters.


BAYERN 1-0 WERDER BREMEN, 20/4/19

By this stage of the season, any slip-up from Bayern could have opened the door for Dortmund to take full advantage. However, they claimed another narrow win over Werder at the Allianz Arena, albeit there was a huge slice of luck involved. Niklas Sule's strike broke the deadlock in the 75th minute, his effort taking a substantial deflection to beat Jiri Pavlenka, with Milos Veljkovic having been dismissed for the visitors.


DORTMUND 2-4 SCHALKE, 27/4/19

Successive wins after the Klassiker ensured Dortmund were still on Bayern's tail, but they imploded in stunning fashion at the hands of rivals Schalke in the Revierderby. Dortmund led through Mario Gotze but the game turned when Daniel Caligiuri converted an 18th-minute penalty harshly awarded after a VAR check on Julian Weigl's handball.

Salif Sane converted Caligiuri's right-wing corner to put Schalke ahead and Dortmund were in disarray after Reus saw red for hacking down Suat Serdar - Caligiuri scoring the resulting free-kick. Marius Wolf was also sent off for a bad foul on Serdar and while Axel Witsel reduced the deficit for the nine men, Breel Embolo settled matters.


WERDER BREMEN 2-2 DORTMUND, 4/5/19

Yes, Werder again. Dortmund could not afford any more mistakes and after Christian Pulisic and Alcacer struck in the first half, they seemed set to bounce back from their derby defeat. It was not to be, though, as Dortmund gave up yet another lead. Roman Burki's awful error allowed Kevin Mohwald to grab one back and it was veteran forward Claudio Pizarro who effectively handed old club Bayern the title with his leveller. He later revealed to Omnisport that he received many messages of thanks from Bayern players and fans.


BAYERN 5-1 EINTRACHT FRANKFURT, 18/5/2019

Die Roten went into the final game of the season just needing to match Dortmund's result, and they accomplished that emphatically. Although a fortuitous Sebastien Haller equaliser just after half-time made things interesting, Bayern blew their visitors away. Alaba and Renato Sanches put them in control, before Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben - playing their final league games for the club - fittingly wrapped up a big win and made absolutely sure of a seventh successive title.

Bayern Munich have been crowned Bundesliga champions for a record seventh successive year thanks to a 5-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

The Bavarians had to wait until the final match of the season to retain their crown, but they got the job done by running out easy victors at the Allianz Arena to remain two points clear of Borussia Dortmund, who beat Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0.

Kingsley Coman settled Bayern's nerves with an early opener, and although a fortuitous Sebastien Haller equaliser just after half-time made things interesting, the champions ultimately cruised.

David Alaba and Renato Sanches put Bayern back in control, before Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben – making their final appearances for the club – fittingly wrapped up a comprehensive victory.

It has not all been plain sailing for Bayern, however, as they endured a troubled first half of the season, which was impacted by a couple of difficult runs to leave new coach Niko Kovac under pressure.

At the end of September, they picked up just a single point from three matches against Augsburg, Hertha Berlin and Gladbach.

They then managed only two points from clashes with Freiburg, Fortuna Dusseldorf and Dortmund, with the latter sitting pretty at the top of the table.

For several months Dortmund looked destined to end Bayern's recent domination of the Bundesliga, but Kovac's men responded brilliantly after the turn of the year, losing just one of their 17 league matches in 2019.

Among that run was an emphatic 5-0 win over Dortmund at the Allianz Arena in early April that saw Bayern usurp their rivals at the summit and they have looked in charge ever since.

Die Roten have certainly been aided by Dortmund's inconsistency with Lucien Favre's men dropping points on seven different occasions in 2019.

And there has been plenty of debate about whether Kovac is the right man to lead the club, with neither CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge nor president Uli Hoeness doing much to calm media reports claiming Bayern may opt to change coach at the end of the season.

Bayern's disappointing Champions League campaign has contributed to the speculation, as they were comfortably eliminated 3-1 on aggregate by Liverpool in the last 16.

Nevertheless, title success allows club greats Ribery and Robben to depart on a high, with Bayern set for a busy summer.

The club have been linked with several talented young players as they look to refresh the squad, while deals for World Cup-winners Benjamin Pavard and Lucas Hernandez have already been sealed.

Bayern could yet clinch a domestic double, as they will face RB Leipzig in the DFB-Pokal final on May 25.

Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben scored on their final league appearances for Bayern Munich as they wrapped up a seventh consecutive Bundesliga title with a 5-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.

Niko Kovac's side had been locked in a pulsating race for the title with Borussia Dortmund but went into the final game of the season knowing a point would almost certainly see them retain their title.

Kingsley Coman set them on their way after just four minutes, although the visitors levelled entirely against the run of play in the 50th minute through Sebastien Haller.

Parity did not last long, however, as David Alaba and Renato Sanches scored in quick succession before Ribery and Robben came off the bench to wrap up the title in style in the final 20 minutes.

Coman ran onto Thomas Muller's pass and slotted past Kevin Trapp from 12 yards for his sixth Bundesliga goal of the campaign, and Bayern could have been out of sight within the opening 15 minutes had Trapp not produced a hat-trick of excellent saves to deny Serge Gnabry, Alaba and Robert Lewandowski.

Gnabry had a strike ruled out by VAR after Lewandowski had strayed into an offside position in the build-up, while Jonathan de Guzman crashed against his own crossbar as Bayern continued to pile forward at every opportunity.

Those missed chances came back to haunt them five minutes after the restart, when half-time substitute Haller prodded home from after David Abraham's effort had bounced back off the crossbar.

Normal service was resumed just three minutes later, however, when Alaba raced in to tap home after Trapp had kept out Muller's effort from distance.

Sanches – who had replaced the injured Leon Goretzka in the first half – then put the result beyond doubt after 58 minutes, cutting in from the left and firing through Trapp for his first Bundesliga goal.

Ribery then signed off from the Allianz Arena in trademark fashion in the 72nd minute, jinking between two defenders and clipping superbly over Trapp for an emotional fourth.

Not to be outdone, though, Robben tapped in from Alaba's cross 12 minutes from time to kick-start the celebrations.

Felix Magath believes Bayern Munich head coach Niko Kovac needs more top players at his disposal amid growing speculation he is set to be sacked by the Bundesliga leaders.

The Bavarians are on the cusp of retaining their league crown and are already through to the DFB-Pokal final, but Kovac's future is far from certain.

Reports of unrest at Bayern, who lost to Liverpool in the Champions League last 16, have led to suggestions former Eintracht Frankfurt boss Kovac could be axed after just one season in charge, regardless of whether he wins the domestic double.

Magath spent three years in charge of Bayern – winning two Bundesliga titles and two DFB-Pokal trophies – and the 65-year-old said Kovac needs time to build his own quality team, especially with the likes of veteran stars Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery set to depart.

"Of course, we should not ignore the effect Niko Kovac had on the success of this Eintracht Frankfurt team," Magath told Omnisport after Kovac led Eintracht to DFB-Pokal success at the expense of Bayern last season.

"I am convinced that he will be able to finish a difficult first year at Bayern Munich [by] lifting two trophies in May.

"However, he will need some more top players who proved themselves internationally to get back to the highest level throughout next year's Champions League campaign."

Bayern host Kovac's former side Eintracht in the final match of the season on Saturday and only need a draw to beat Borussia Dortmund to the title.

They will then face RB Leipzig in the DFB-Pokal final in Berlin on May 25.

Werder Bremen have announced captain Max Kruse will leave the club at the end of the season.

The 31-year-old forward returned to the Weserstadion in 2016 for a second spell with the club and was handed the captaincy ahead of the 2018-19 campaign.

Kruse has scored 11 times in the Bundesliga but the Germany international, who has been strongly linked with Tottenham, Bayern Munich and Inter in recent weeks, will be moving on once his contract expires.

"I really enjoyed playing for the club for three years and proudly captained the side too - that will always be a great memory for me," Kruse told the German club's official website.

Bremen coach Florian Kohfeldt added: "Max is an outstanding player who has impressively proved over the last three years how valuable he can be to a team. 

"My relationship with him was built on the greatest trust, something which you perhaps wouldn’t get in a normal player-coach relationship. I wish Max all the very best for the future."

Following weeks of speculation, Massimiliano Allegri confirmed on Friday that he is to leave Juventus at the end of the season after five years at the club.

Allegri will have won the Serie A title in all five of his seasons with Juve - having done likewise in his first campaign with AC Milan in 2010-11 - while also lifting the Coppa Italia on four occasions.

But the 51-year-old's future at the Allianz Stadium had been uncertain ever since Juve crashed out of the Champions League at the hands of Ajax.

Following a meeting with president Andrea Agnelli this week, Allegri has decided to step down and seek a new challenge away from Turin.

Given his success in Italy, a number of teams - including some of those he has faced regularly in Serie A - could be interested. Here, we assess potential landing spots for Allegri.


Bayern Munich (current boss: Niko Kovac)

Bayern could be another side soon to be in the hunt for a new man at the helm as questions continue to be asked of Kovac. Despite being on course for a domestic double, with Bayern two points clear of Borussia Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga with a game to go ahead of the DFB-Pokal final, Kovac reportedly does not fit the profile for the type of man the German giants are after - something which would not be a problem if Allegri is appointed.

Chelsea (current boss: Maurizio Sarri)

Sarri appears to be living on borrowed time at Stamford Bridge even if, like Kovac, he can reflect on a debut campaign at a new club with plenty of positives. He guided Chelsea to third in the Premier League, a Wembley appearance in the EFL Cup - they battled with Manchester City for 120 minutes before losing on penalties - and to the final of the Europa League, where domestic rivals Arsenal await on May 29. Should they turn to Allegri, he will become the seventh Italian coach to have managed the club in the past two decades.

Paris Saint-Germain (current boss: Thomas Tuchel)

Tuchel has been unable to shake off rumours that he will be on his way out following a solitary season in charge, not helped by his side's poor run of form towards the end of the campaign. PSG retained their Ligue 1 crown with plenty to spare, but they were unable to do likewise in the Coupe de France and Coupe de la Ligue, while they also exited the Champions League at the last-16 stage. As a two-time finalist in UEFA's showpiece club competition, PSG's ambitious owners may see Allegri as the right fit to at least take them beyond the quarter-finals - something they have failed to achieve under Qatari ownership.

AC Milan (current boss: Gennaro Gattuso)

Milan chief executive Ivan Gazidis is reportedly in the process of meeting candidates to take over from Gattuso, who has had his coaching credentials questioned in a season that has seen the fallen Italian giants struggle for consistency. With surprise package Atalanta three points better off in the race for the final Champions League qualifying spot, Milan face the prospect of another season away from European football's top table. Given his San Siro past, where he won the Serie A title and the Supercoppa Italiana, could Allegri be tempted by a return to Milan to help revive his former side's faltering fortunes?

Inter (current boss: Luciano Spalletti)

Allegri may take the controversial option of managing Milan's bitter rivals should he not fancy a return to the club he left in 2014 when sacked midway through the campaign. Lifting the Serie A title with a third different club may appeal to him, particularly as Inter are rumoured to be ready to spend big in the next transfer window as they aim to challenge for major honours once again. Spalletti is the man in charge at the Nerazzurri, but an underwhelming 2019 has seen his future called into question.

Arsenal (current boss: Unai Emery)

Perhaps the only one of the clubs listed where the top job is not under immediate threat, although Arsenal chiefs may opt to twist should they lose their huge Europa League final showdown with Chelsea. Allegri was tipped to succeed Arsene Wenger at Emirates Stadium last year, only for Emery to get the nod, and the Spaniard worked through a mixed campaign in the Premier League. The big question is, though, would Allegri be happy to join a club in need of improvements but without huge funds available to spend?

Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has denied coach Niko Kovac is set to be sacked at the end of the season.

A report in Germany indicated Kovac will lose his job regardless of whether he leads the club to a domestic double before the end of the month.

Bayern need only a point at home to Eintracht Frankfurt to wrap up the Bundesliga title and are also through to the final of the DFB-Pokal.

Despite the potential for silverware, rumours of unrest at Allianz Arena have lingered since an underwhelming start to the campaign.

Rummenigge refused to offer guarantees earlier this week but insists there is no truth to the latest report, telling Bild: "There is no such decision. This message is a total hoax."

Kovac, a former Bayern player, left Frankfurt to succeed Jupp Heynckes in Bavaria.

Speaking ahead of Saturday's crunch reunion with his ex-employers, the Croatian labelled speculation surrounding his future as no more than "side rumours".

His team are two points clear atop the Bundesliga and will be crowned champions if second-placed Borussia Dortmund fail to win at Borussia Monchengladbach.

Lucien Favre feels the high stakes for both of Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich's final-day opponents will be a factor in a Bundesliga title race going down to the wire.

Stumbles for both champions Bayern and Favre's Dortmund have made a battle between two flawed teams utterly compelling, although Niko Kovac's men remain favourites heading into Saturday's concluding round of fixtures.

Bayern boast a two-point advantage over their rivals as they target a seventh consecutive Bundesliga crown – a title that would already be secure had they not been held to a 0-0 draw by RB Leipzig last weekend.

Third-place Leipzig are already assured of a Champions League spot next term but two of the teams still in the running for fourth place – Borussia Monchengladbach and Eintracht Frankfurt – are Dortmund and Bayern's respective weekend foes.

"The title race is open until the end. Many games and many teams are still fighting for the Champions League and Europa League," said Favre at a pre-match news conference ahead of BVB's trip to face Gladbach, a club he coached between 2011 and 2015.

"Also, some are fighting for the title. It is very interesting this season and it will be exciting in Gladbach."

In an intriguing parallel within the prospective last-day drama, Kovac is facing an Eintracht side he led to DFB-Pokal glory against Bayern a year ago.

"We have to be fully concentrated on our game and hope that good things happen on the other pitch," Favre said. "The game has to be our focus and we have to win it. Period.

"Everything is possible. How high are the chances? It's hard to say and I don't really want to talk about it.

"We have to win in Gladbach. As you said, Gladbach also want to win. We will have to play on a high level and win in the end."

Dortmund will be boosted by the return of captain Marco Reus from suspension, although Marius Wolf remains banned after the pair were sent off in the derby defeat to Schalke.

Goalkeeper Roman Burki is expected to play after overcoming a thigh problem but Favre said defender Abdou Diallo is a likely absentee as he continues to struggle with the muscular complaint that forced him to miss the 3-2 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf last time out.

Niko Kovac is not interested in speculation he could be sacked by Bayern Munich if they fail to retain the Bundesliga title.

Bayern must win at home to Kovac's old club Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday to guarantee they cannot be caught by Borussia Dortmund.

They could still complete a domestic double as Kovac has led Bayern through a rocky DFB-Pokal campaign to a final against RB Leipzig.

Regardless of the potential for Bayern to end the campaign with two trophies, reports have claimed Kovac's job is on the line this weekend.

Ajax head coach Erik ten Hag, who previously coached Bayern's reserve team, is among those linked with succeeding Kovac.

But the Croatian is ignoring speculation about his future ahead of Saturday's game, which will be the last at the club for Arjen Robben, Rafinha and Franck Ribery.

"These are side issues that I'm not interested in," Kovac told reporters on Thursday when asked about rumours he could be sacked. 

"We now have two tasks to focus on, we could become champions, our full focus is not on what's being told, I'm not interested.

"I have a contract that will run for another two years and I want to fulfil that, we have developed well and we only lost twice after the Dusseldorf game."

With so much at stake Bayern could give Robben, Ribery and Rafinha the perfect farewell by claiming the title in front of their own fans.

But Kovac was unwilling to divulge whether he would play the long-serving trio, while James Rodriguez and captain Manuel Neuer are ruled out due to injury.

"We do not have to say too much about the three of them, they did a lot for the club," Kovac added.

"I will not tell you who's playing, we want to get the fans excited, it's a final, I'm pretty sure our team will feel the extra motivation. We hope the spark will jump us over the line.

"Javi Martinez will train again tomorrow. [Joshua] Kimmich had a reduced workload today, but everything is fine. Thiago Alcantara is doing well too and already took part in some of yesterday's session.

"Manuel Neuer made good progress. He's on the road to recovery, but he won't play on the weekend. James Rodriguez is also still out."

Antoine Griezmann looks set to be at the heart of 2019's major transfer saga, having announced his intention to leave Atletico Madrid.

Griezmann has been Atletico's leading light since he joined from Real Sociedad five years ago, but he confirmed on Tuesday he will leave the Wanda Metropolitano at the end of the season, with Barcelona reportedly his preferred destination.

Atletico can reflect on a period of success for the club with Griezmann playing a key role, the France forward firing them to Europa League glory last year before winning the World Cup with his country.

Replacing Griezmann will prove a major challenge for Diego Simeone as the striker has scored 133 of their 463 goals in all competitions since 2014-15, 28.7 per cent of the club's total.

But how does that figure compare to some of the other elite strikers of European football in recent seasons?

 

CRISTIANO RONALDO

There was European disappointment for Cristiano Ronaldo this season, but he helped Juventus cruise to another Serie A title and contributed 28 of the 86 goals they scored in all competitions - 32.6 per cent

That figure is remarkably similar to his record at Real Madrid between the 2009-10 and 2017-18 seasons, where he was responsible for 450 of their 1,378 goals - 32.7 per cent - contributing to a historic run of three consecutive Champions League crowns.


LIONEL MESSI

Griezmann could line up with Lionel Messi at Camp Nou next term, with the Argentina attacker on track to win the European Golden Shoe for a record sixth time.

Messi, now captain at Barca, has scored 27.9 per cent of his team's goals since breaking into the team as a teenager in October 2004.

LUIS SUAREZ

Griezmann is widely expected to be a successor to Luis Suarez, with the Uruguay international aged 32 and seemingly coming towards the end of his career.

Suarez has scored 177 of 767 Barcelona's goals in all competitions - 23.1 per cent - since he joined the club from Liverpool in 2014.


ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI

Bayern Munich look set to clinch another Bundesliga title, their success continuing to be built around the reliable goalscoring of Robert Lewandowski.

Poland international Lewandowski joined Bayern in July 2014 and has since scored 189 goals in all competitions for the club, 29.7 per cent of their total in that time.


HARRY KANE

Pep Guardiola once famously described Tottenham as 'the Harry Kane team' and the Opta numbers bear out his assessment to a degree.

England captain Kane has scored 30.6 per cent of Spurs' 519 goals in all competitions since the start of the 2014-15 campaign, winning two Premier League Golden Boots in the process.


SERGIO AGUERO

Perhaps surprisingly, Manchester City's all-time record goalscorer Sergio Aguero has the joint-lowest percentage for his club among the strikers we examined.

Since joining City ahead of the 2011-12 season he has scored 231 of their 1,019 goals in all competitions for a comparatively low 22.7 per cent. However, that still marks a hugely significant contribution to City's ongoing success. 



EDINSON CAVANI

Paris Saint-Germain's all-time leading goalscorer Edinson Cavani has had an injury-hit campaign for the Ligue 1 champions.

Since 2013-14, Suarez's international team-mate Cavani has scored 192 of PSG’s 847 goals in all competitions - 22.7 per cent - although he did play wide when Zlatan Ibrahimovic was at the club.

Arjen Robben has admitted he could retire when he leaves Bayern Munich at the end of the season.

The 35-year-old winger is set to depart the Allianz Arena after a decade and is yet to make a call on his next move.

Persistent fitness issues have hampered Robben's final season in Bavaria, though he has still been linked with the likes of Inter and former clubs PSV and Groningen.

The Champions League winner revealed in January that several clubs had made contact, but all options remain on the table.

"I'm late in making a decision, but that has to do with my injury. I wanted to get back on the pitch and then think about my future," Robben told a news conference on Tuesday.

"I hope to make a decision within one or two weeks, but I can't promise anything.

"It's not an easy choice to make. The whole package has to be right, not just in a footballing sense but also for my family.

"The easiest thing to do would be to stop. That is also an option for me, but I'm not sure whether I will do that."

Robben recently returned from a calf injury to make his 700th professional appearance and will bow out from Bayern with an eighth Bundesliga title if the leaders avoid defeat at home to Eintracht Frankfurt on the final day of the season.

"I've already played Saturday's game three times in my head," the former Netherlands international said.

"It would be absolutely incredible [to finish with the title]. That's a dream, but you have to make dreams come true. I am convinced that it works."

Robben will be joined in leaving Bayern by Franck Ribery and experienced full-back Rafinha, who has become the latest long-serving squad member to confirm his impending departure.

The 33-year-old Brazilian said his fond memories of a lengthy stay with the German giants will not be sullied if second-placed Borussia Dortmund pip them to top spot.

"We've been together for so long. That's the most important. Not the last game or the last title," Rafinha said.

"The friendship we have here is the most important thing. That's why my mother said that I should say thank you for everything, to all employees and players. These people are very important to me."

Bayern Munich full-back Rafinha has confirmed he will leave the Bundesliga champions at the end of the season.

The Brazilian joined from Genoa in 2011 and quickly established himself as an important first-team player.

His opportunities have been limited under Niko Kovac this term, however, and he has made just nine Bundesliga starts.

He joins veteran wingers Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery in bidding farewell to the Allianz Arena ahead of the 2019-20 campaign.

"The eight years have been wonderful," he told a media conference. "I've had some great moments. The treble in 2013 was special. All things come to an end eventually."

He will hope to play a part in Bayern's final Bundesliga game of the season at home to Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

Bayern need to beat Kovac's old club at the Allianz Arena to defend their title once more and hold off the challenge of Borussia Dortmund.

Serge Gnabry and Kingsley Coman have the ability to succeed departing duo Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery, says Bayern Munich's former striker Claudio Pizarro.

Ribery and Robben are both leaving the Allianz Arena at the end of the season, having spent a combined 22 years at the club.

Bayern made a public play to sign Chelsea teenager Callum Hudson-Odoi in the January transfer window, having a series of bids for the winger rejected by the Premier League side.

Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has indicated Bayern could make another attempt to bring in England international Hudson-Odoi, but Pizarro feels Ribery and Robben's replacements may already be at the club.

"I think they are able to replace them," Pizarro, now in a fourth stint at Werder Bremen, told Omnisport.

"You reach a certain point where you've got to stop [talking about Robben and Ribery] and new people arrive.

"This is normal and these two are very good players. They will have a good development and do good things for Bayern.

"I would like to play with them [Robben and Ribery] but I don't know what they are going to do. I wish them all the best for their future, as I said. I hope they find something they really want to do after Bayern.

"I know Arjen a bit better to be honest, because I was at Chelsea for one year together with him. Since then we had a very good relationship on and off the pitch. I was very happy when he returned to the pitch again after his injury.

"Both are special players on the wing. They would be important for any team. They are good at one-on-ones and how they score goals is essential for any team. It was an honour for me to play with them and I wish them all the best."

Pizarro scored a potentially decisive goal in the title race, his late leveller earlier this month earning Werder a 2-2 draw at home to Borussia Dortmund, who are now two points behind Bayern going into the final weekend of the Bundesliga season.

Werder, meanwhile, wrap up their campaign at home to RB Leipzig, with Florian Kohfeldt's side able to finish as high as seventh in the table.

"Kohfeldt is very good in leading the team," Pizarro, 40, said. "He is a coach that can speak very well to a player. He gives a lot of confidence to the player. I think the player returns this confidence on the pitch.

"He is very good in tactics, he does that really well. And I think he will be a good coach, he is heading in the right direction. With more experience he will become one of the greatest coaches in Germany."

Asked if Kohfeldt, 36, is a potential successor to Germany coach Joachim Low, Pizarro added: "It could happen. We will see. Now he is still at Werder.

"He still has some years here at Bremen where he can gain more experience. This is very important, I think. In the end he will decide on what's best for his career."

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