Niklas Sule has offered his support to Borussia Dortmund team-mate Sebastien Haller after he discovered a testicular tumour, insisting on-pitch matters are "one hundred per cent in the background" while he recovers.

Haller, a new signing at Dortmund, was forced to leave the club's pre-season training camp in Switzerland after feeling unwell on Monday, with subsequent tests revealing the tumour.

Dortmund boss Edin Terzic then revealed the striker had returned to Germany for further tests, describing the news as "brutally difficult".

Haller's former Ajax and Utrecht coach Erik ten Hag was among those to wish the Ivory Coast international a speedy recovery yesterday, sentiments which have now been echoed by fellow Dortmund new boy Sule.

"The sporting aspect is one hundred per cent in the background," the defender told Dortmund's media channels. "It is the man Sebastien Haller that we miss. 

"We wish him all the best, that he gets well again quickly and a lot of strength for the time that will come now. 

"How he handled the news was very positive. As a team, we wanted to give him a small sign that we were with him. I wish that he will get well very soon."

Bayern Munich could be nearing further additions to their squad after Oliver Kahn confirmed talks with Mathys Tel, Konrad Laimer and David Raum. 

The Bundesliga champions have already signed big-name duo Sadio Mane and Matthijs de Ligt, while the promising Ryan Gravenberch and Noussair Mazraoui have arrived from Ajax. 

Speaking at a news conference to present De Ligt to the media after his €80million arrival from Juventus, Kahn revealed he expects there to be further movement. 

Teenage Rennes forward Tel, experienced RB Leipzig midfielder Laimer and Germany international Raum have all been linked with a switch to the Allianz Arena. 

"We have had further discussions with these players and now we just have to wait and see," said Bayern CEO Kahn on Wednesday. 

"The transfer window is still open for a while. Sometimes things move very quickly. 

"After analysing last season, we thought we should make a few statements. We want to continue to be among the top four teams in Europe." 

Bayern have lost star striker Robert Lewandowski to Barcelona, with the Catalan giants continuing to make significant outlays in the transfer market despite questions about their finances. 

Julian Nagelsmann openly questioned the situation at Barca but Kahn was far more cautious on the subject. 

"You can't be fooled by all the transfers from Barcelona. I'm not a fan of judging things from the outside," said Kahn. 

"None of us can really judge how the situation is. I find that a bit difficult. They'll know what they're doing because they're the only ones who really know the numbers." 

Bayern Munich do not need to sign a like-for-like replacement for Robert Lewandowski, the Poland international has insisted.

Lewandowski was finally granted his wish earlier this week when Bayern allowed him to join Barcelona in a deal worth up to €50million including add-ons, as the striker penned a four-year contract with the Blaugrana.

The 33-year-old, who will have a €500m buyout clause at Camp Nou, scored 50 goals across all competitions last season – the most across Europe's top five leagues.

Lewandowski's 312 Bundesliga goals are also the second-most scored by any player in the competition's history, behind Gerd Muller (365), while he leaves Bayern having accumulated 344 goals and 57 assists across 375 appearances in all competitions.

Sadio Mane had already been signed by Julian Nagelsmann's side in preparation for Lewandowski's exit, though the Senegal international spent most of his time at Liverpool playing from the left.

But Lewandowski cannot foresee Bayern struggling for goals during the upcoming campaign, with the Bundesliga champions still having the likes of Kingsley Coman, Thomas Muller, Leroy Sane and Jamal Musiala to call upon.

 

"I think Bayern have so many talented offensive players that you don't necessarily need a number nine, a real centre forward," he told German outlet BILD. 

"Bayern's attack is outstanding, they can manage it very well, even without a one-on-one replacement for me.

"There's Kingsley Coman, Leroy Sane, Thomas Muller, Jamal Musiala. The players are given more responsibility for scoring goals and can grow in this role."

Bayern will begin their Bundesliga campaign without Lewandowski at Eintracht Frankfurt on August 5.

Bayern Munich players must share the goalscoring burden after Robert Lewandowski's move to Barcelona, according to Joshua Kimmich, who hopes new arrival Matthijs de Ligt can contribute at both ends of the pitch.

Lewandowski completed his long-awaited move to Camp Nou earlier this week, having declared "something had died" within him after netting 50 goals in all competitions during his final season with the Bundesliga champions.

The Poland international has scored a total of 312 Bundesliga goals, with 238 of them coming during an eight-year spell with the Bavarian giants, and finished as the league's top goalscorer in each of the last five seasons.

Bayern had already added Liverpool's Sadio Mane in a bid to lessen the impact of Lewandowski's exit, but Kimmich believes the Senegal forward cannot replace the 33-year-old's goals alone.

"With Lewy we lose a lot of goals, which we all have to make up for collectively," he told Bayern fans at an event in Washington, D.C. 

"Sadio Mane is a great player, but I don't think he's the player who scores 40 or 50 goals in the end. Sadio is hungry, wants to win titles, wants to score goals and move forward. We hope to see that from him.

"He brings other qualities with him, so that another might score more goals. We have a few attacking players who can be dangerous.

"It's also one of my targets to score more goals. There were three goals last season, that can definitely be improved."

 

Having received an estimated €50million for Lewandowski's services, Bayern announced the signing of Netherlands international De Ligt on Tuesday, as they bid to strengthen in defence.

Kimmich believes reinforcing Bayern's backline could make all the difference after the loss of Lewandowski's goals, though he also backed the defender to contribute going forward.

"Matthijs de Ligt has the skills to lead, organise and direct," Kimmich added. "Hopefully he will score a goal or two for us, which is important after Lewy's departure. 

"The 50 goals have to go somewhere! It's good for us when we have someone at the back who's good at tackling, who can organise, and also scores goals. We have great quality in the central defender position.

"Without Lewy, it's even more important to work better at the back. And as long as we're winning the games, it doesn't matter if we have a number nine."

Meanwhile, Kimmich could feature alongside a new midfield partner next term after the club signed Ajax's breakthrough star Ryan Gravenberch for a reported fee of €19m.

And the 27-year-old was enthusiastic about Gravenberch's progress since joining, adding: "He's doing really well in training. 

"[He's a] super boy, very sure on the ball, technically top, physically good. He's 19 years old, it's impressive that he's already at such a high level. He can be very helpful to us."

Borussia Dortmund boss Edin Terzic disclosed that players were only informed of Sebastien Haller's tumour after their loss to Valencia.

Dortmund played their first foreign opponent in preparations for the upcoming season on Monday, with a Goncalo Guedes brace helping Valencia to a 3-1 win in Austria.

It was overshadowed by news of Haller's diagnosis of a testicular tumour, however, ruling him out indefinitely, after the 28-year-old travelled back to Dortmund for medical tests over the weekend and missed the game.

Terzic admitted it was hard to focus on the task at hand upon his discovery of the news as the team prepared to depart for the match, but wished the Ivory Coast international a speedy recovery.

"The week went very well until yesterday," Terzic said on Tuesday. "The message from Sebastien Haller shocked us. Personally, I found out about half an hour before leaving for the game.

"Accordingly, it wasn't easy for us to think about tactics, pressing and passing again. We still tried to make it as professional as possible. We didn't talk to the team about it before the game, but informed the team afterwards.

"Sebastien Haller left us yesterday and traveled to Germany for further investigations. We keep our fingers crossed for Sebastien and the entire Haller family that he will recover as soon as possible."

Initially taking over from Lucien Favre in December 2020, Terzic was reappointed as the first team coach on a permanent basis in the off-season following Marco Rose's departure.

The 39-year-old revealed he has experienced a smoother transition into the role as Dortmund boss, despite Haller's recent diagnosis.

While he believes it will take time for his BVB side to be truly ready for the season ahead, the added time to work on patterns of play has made his job less chaotic.

"The biggest difference is that when I first became head coach, I was told on a Sunday morning and we had an away game on Tuesday night," Terzic said.

"You couldn't prepare many things and decided a lot quickly and intuitively. We now have weeks of advance notice to plan this preparation and the match opponents, to shape the group and to promote the integration of the newcomers. That's a key difference.

"The preparations won't be finished next Friday either, but it will still take some time before we're where we want to be at the end and we're showing consistently good football with a lot of automatisms. It will still take a little time, but we are on the right track."

Matthijs de Ligt leaving Juventus for Bayern Munich is a "good sign" for the Bundesliga champions and the German top flight, according to Julian Nagelsmann.

The centre-back joined Bayern in a deal worth a reported €80million and signed a five-year contract on Monday, ending his three-year spell in Turin.

De Ligt became the fourth arrival this transfer window for Bayern after the additions of Sadio Mane and Ajax duo Noussair Mazraoui and Ryan Gravenberch.

Bayern reportedly beat away interest from Chelsea and Manchester United for De Ligt, who played 2,675 minutes for Juve last season – the most of any outfield player.

Nagelsmann, speaking to reporters on Bayern's pre-season tour in the United States, insists the signing of De Ligt will help his side and German football develop.

"I'm very happy that we got him. He's still very young and he's already had a great career," coach Nagelsmann said. 

"It's a good sign for us and for the whole Bundesliga that we got him. He's a leader and he can do other things, mentoring the players. I hope he can get to know his team-mates soon.

"Of course we don't have [Robert] Lewandowski anymore, so it's important that he also brings his strengths in front of goal as well. I'm hoping for seven or eight goals!"

Lewandowski scored 50 goals in all competitions last campaign, the most across Europe's top five leagues, but has left for Barcelona in a transfer worth up to €50m on a four-year contract.

Though Nagelsmann acknowledged Bayern will miss the talismanic striker, the 34-year-old suggested it is the time for other players to step up in his absence, such as Kinglsey Coman.

"He's one of the most important players for us. He's very good at solving one-on-one situations, whether he's playing left or right," Nagelsmann said of the France international.

"He's also great at crossing and finishing well. He could score more goals in the future. There were many situations in the past where he could have scored.

"We don't have Lewandowski anymore and we need players like him, Sadio, Thomas [Muller and] Jamal [Musiala].

"He's also an important part of the dressing room and speaks German very well. Last season was great but I'm already looking forward to the new season with him."

Lewandowski's 312 Bundesliga goals are the second-most scored by any player in the history of the competition, behind Gerd Muller (365), and team-mate Alphonso Davies is sad to see the forward leave.

"We didn't ask him about his decision. It was his and his family's decision. We wish him all the best," Davies said.

"It's a shame he left us because he's one of the best strikers in the world. But we still have enough quality in the squad.

"Matthijs is an incredible talent, strong, fast, a leader. It's good for us that he's coming. He will bring quality and especially leadership.

"Sadio is a great player and a great person. He's just a good guy and a hard worker."

Barcelona have confirmed the final agreement to sign Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich for €50million, including add-ons, on a four-year contract.

The Poland international travelled to Miami to meet his new team-mates on Sunday, the day after Barca confirmed they had struck an agreement in principle with Bayern.

Lewandowski subsequently passed his medical, with Bayern "officially" announcing his departure on Tuesday.

Barca soon confirmed the transfer details for the talismanic striker, who will have a €500m buyout clause.

The 33-year-old scored 50 goals across all competitions last season, the most across Europe's top five leagues, as Bayern lifted their 10th Bundesliga title in a row.

Lewandowski broke Gerd Muller's long-standing Bundesliga record by scoring 41 goals in a single season in the 2020-21 campaign, while his 43 league goals in 2021 serve as the record for a calendar year in Germany's top tier.

The forward's 312 Bundesliga goals are the second-most scored by any player in competition's history, behind Muller (365), while he leaves Bayern having accumulated 344 goals and 57 assists across 375 appearances in all competitions.

 

Though Julian Nagelsmann was reluctant to let Lewandowski leave, he suggested Bayern's game plan will become more "unpredictable" after his departure.

"When someone like Robert plays up front, you play more crosses," he told reporters on Bayern's pre-season tour in the United States. "The way we're going to play will change. It's a new Bayern Munich.

"It will be a challenge – and I like challenges. It's good for everyone, we have to find new ways and be creative.

"In the past it might have been easier for the opponent to prepare for our game. Now we're going to be even more unpredictable."

Bayern Munich have completed the signing of Matthijs de Ligt from Juventus in a deal worth a reported €80million.

The Netherlands international has agreed a five-year contract with the Bundesliga champions, ending his three-year stint in Turin.

De Ligt becomes Julian Nagelsmann's fourth signing of this window after Sadio Mane and former Ajax duo Noussair Mazraoui and Ryan Gravenberch.

The defender had two years remaining on his contract at Juventus - for whom he played more minutes than any of his outfield team-mates in Serie A last season (2,675).

Bayern have reportedly agreed to pay the Bianconeri an initial €70m, with a further €10m in add-ons.

 

Speaking to the club's website after his signing was confirmed, De Ligt said: "I'm very happy to become a player for this great club. FC Bayern are the most successful club in Germany, one of the most successful clubs in Europe and in the world.

"I felt the genuine appreciation from the sporting management, the coach and the board right from the start, which convinced me. On top of that, FC Bayern is a brilliantly run club with big aims. I'm very glad that I'm now becoming part of the FC Bayern story."

Bayern president, Herbert Hainer, added: "Matthijs de Ligt was a top target for us. With signings like this, the big aims that we have are achievable.

"The future face of our team is increasingly taking shape, and this transfer is an important building block in the overall concept that we're gradually putting into place. De Ligt should become a mainstay at FC Bayern."

Erik ten Hag wished his former Ajax striker Sebastien Haller well after Borussia Dortmund's new signing was forced to leave the club's pre-season training camp due to a testicular tumour.

Haller enjoyed a stellar season under Ten Hag's management of the Eredivisie giants in 2021-22, scoring 21 league goals and netting 11 times in eight Champions League games to earn a move to Bundesliga giants Dortmund.

But Haller stepped away from his new club's pre-season training camp in Switzerland on Monday after feeling unwell during a session, with subsequent tests revealing the tumour.

The Ivory Coast international told social media followers he was focused on his recovery on Tuesday as Dortmund pledged to offer an update on his condition when possible. 

Haller began a fruitful relationship with Ten Hag when the Dutchman became Utrecht coach in 2015, the striker plundering 30 goals across two seasons under him before the duo were reunited at Ajax in 2020.

Speaking after his Manchester United side posted a 3-1 pre-season win over Crystal Palace, Ten Hag sent a message of support to Haller.

"It's horrible," he told MUTV. "I have a fantastic relationship with him.

"He's my friend, he was my striker for several years with Utrecht and Ajax, and when you hear such news it's devastating.

"My thoughts are with him, with his family, and I hope he will recover quickly."

Meanwhile, Haller's current coach Edin Terzic described the situation as "brutally difficult" as he joined Ten Hag in sending his best wishes to the striker. 

"Of course, we were shocked to hear the news yesterday," Terzic told Dortmund's media channels. "I personally heard it about half an hour before we were preparing to leave for the game [a 3-1 friendly loss to Valencia].

"It was not easy for all of us to find the switch, we tried to do it as professionally as possible, but then we didn't talk about it with the team before the game, but informed the team after the game.

"Now I ask you to understand that it is brutally difficult for us. The diagnosis is still pending. 

"Sebastien left us last night, went to Germany today for further examinations, and we are keeping our fingers crossed for Sebastien and his whole family that he will get well as soon as possible.

"First of all, it is about the human being Sebastien Haller getting well again. 

"As for the sportive issues that come with this loss, we haven't thought about those yet because we are still awaiting the diagnosis. We don't even know yet how long he will be out."

Bayern Munich have completed the signing of Matthijs de Ligt from Juventus in a deal worth a reported €80million.

The Netherlands international has agreed a five-year contract with the Bundesliga champions, ending his three-year stint in Turin.

De Ligt becomes Julian Nagelsmann's fourth signing of this window after Sadio Mane and former Ajax duo Noussair Mazraoui and Ryan Gravenberch.

The defender had two years remaining on his contract at Juventus - for whom he played more minutes than any of his outfield team-mates in Serie A last season (2,675).

Bayern have reportedly agreed to pay the Bianconeri an initial €70m, with a further €10m in add-ons.

 

Speaking to the club's website after his signing was confirmed, De Ligt said: "I'm very happy to become a player for this great club. FC Bayern are the most successful club in Germany, one of the most successful clubs in Europe and in the world.

"I felt the genuine appreciation from the sporting management, the coach and the board right from the start, which convinced me. On top of that, FC Bayern is a brilliantly run club with big aims. I'm very glad that I'm now becoming part of the FC Bayern story."

Bayern president, Herbert Hainer, added: "Matthijs de Ligt was a top target for us. With signings like this, the big aims that we have are achievable.

"The future face of our team is increasingly taking shape, and this transfer is an important building block in the overall concept that we're gradually putting into place. De Ligt should become a mainstay at FC Bayern."

Cristiano Ronaldo is still a top player, but Bayern Munich should not bring him to the Allianz Arena.

That is according to former Bayern player Thorsten Fink, who wants the Bundesliga champions to be a "great team" rather than a "team of greats".

Ronaldo has been linked with a move away from Manchester United after reportedly telling the Red Devils he wants to leave in search of Champions League football.

However, Bayern CEO Oliver Kahn appeared to dampen suggestions the club would look to bring in the 37-year-old, who scored 24 goals in 38 games in all competitions for United last season, saying recently a move for the Portugal star "does not necessarily fit with our ideas".

Fink concurred with Kahn's assertion, telling Stats Perform: "Cristiano was and still is a top player, [but] you have to look at how he fits your system and how he blends into the structure of the team.

"Does a player with his magnitude fit this club and this team? Would others suffer from that? This is what you have to think about. I am sure they talked about this at FC Bayern.

"It is about the system you play, the charisma and magnitude that Cristiano Ronaldo has.

"You either are a 'team of greats' or you are a 'great team', and I think for FC Bayern it is important to be a great team and not have great individual players who, in the end, don't have that character to win things."

Fink played for Bayern between 1997 and 2003, winning four Bundesliga titles, three DFB-Pokals and the Champions League in 2000-01, and he has been impressed by the business his former club has done in the transfer window.

Although Bayern sold Robert Lewandowski to Barcelona, they added Sadio Mane from Liverpool, as well as duo Ryan Gravenberch and Noussair Mazraoui from Ajax, while another former Ajax man Matthijs de Ligt is close to finalising a big money move from Juventus.

"I'm always surprised at what FC Bayern manages to achieve again and again," Fink said. 

"One year you think 'now everyone's saying Bayern will not win a title' or something. I've heard it from people again. But when you see who they've brought in, I have to say 'chapeau' to them for bringing players of such class over from England. 

"That actually shows how interesting our league is. And you have to say hats off to FC Bayern. Only Bayern can bring players like that to our country who enhance our league. And that's why I'm really happy that Mane has come and that De Ligt has also come.

"I can't wait to see what FC Bayern can achieve."

Sebastien Haller thanked well-wishers after the Borussia Dortmund striker had to leave the club's pre-season training camp due to a testicular tumour.

The Ivory Coast striker recently joined Dortmund on a four-year deal from Dutch champions Ajax, arriving as a replacement for Erling Haaland who moved on to Manchester City.

Haller was with his new club in Switzerland when he complained of feeling unwell at training on Monday. Subsequent medical tests revealed the tumour, and 28-year-old Haller has returned to Germany for further assessment.

Dortmund have said they will offer updates on Haller's condition when possible.

Haller wrote on Twitter on Tuesday: "I want to thank you again from the bottom of my heart for all the many and warm messages received. I've been very moved to see the beautiful reactions and I have the impression that I don't deserve so much.

"But I know that thanks to you, it will be just one more test on our journey. We will see each other very soon on the pitch to celebrate our next victories."

He added: "I will now focus on my recovery to come back stronger."

Dortmund sporting director Sebastian Kehl said on Monday that the initial test outcome had been "a shock to Sebastien Haller and to all of us".

Kehl added: "The entire BVB family wishes Sebastien a full recovery as soon as possible and that we can hug him again soon. We will do everything in our power to ensure that he receives the best possible treatment."

Haller is returning to German football after previously playing for Eintracht Frankfurt from 2017 to 2019, after which he had 18 months at West Ham prior to joining Ajax.

He enjoyed a highly impressive season with Ajax last term, finishing as the Eredivisie's top scorer with 21 goals in 31 games, while netting 11 times in eight Champions League matches.

Only Robert Lewandowski (13) and Karim Benzema (15) scored more Champions League goals than Haller.

Oliver Kahn has revealed Matthijs de Ligt was quickly won over by the prospect of joining Bayern Munich from Juventus.

The defender has agreed to switch from Serie A to the Bundesliga and confirmation of his move on a five-year contract was widely expected to come on Tuesday.

Dutch centre-back De Ligt spent three seasons with Juventus, winning the Scudetto in the first of those campaigns before the Turin giants slipped to consecutive fourth-placed finishes.

He leaves to join a Bayern side who have won 10 consecutive domestic league titles, with Kahn confident the new acquisition will fortify coach Julian Nagelsmann's defence.

Former goalkeeper Kahn, who is now Bayern's CEO, said: "If you look at the last two or three years, we've been very successful, but we've conceded one or two too many goals."

The outlay on De Ligt, reported to be €70million plus €10m in potential add-ons, is targeted at ensuring Bayern are more secure at the back.

"De Ligt is big, strong in tackles, strong in the air, he has a good build-up game. He's someone who likes to lead and is loud," Kahn said, quoted widely by German media.

Kahn, speaking on Bayern's US tour, said talking De Ligt into joining was "very easy", just "like Sadio Mane".

Kahn revealed how Senegal forward Mane had "thought for two days" before deciding to leave Liverpool for Bayern in June.

"It was the same with Matthijs de Ligt," said Kahn.

Bayern have lost Niklas Sule on a free transfer to Borussia Dortmund, and Omar Richards left for Nottingham Forest.

It remains to be seen whether Nagelsmann and Bayern elect to move on other fringe defenders after landing their prime target in De Ligt, but no such outgoing move appears imminent.

"At the moment we're not thinking in those categories," Kahn said.

West Ham are reportedly confident they will be able to land 20-year-old Lille midfielder Amadou Onana after increasing their bid for the Belgium international.

Onana, who made his senior international debut on June 3 against the Netherlands in Nations League action, enjoyed a terrific first season in Ligue 1 after leaving Hamburg in Bundesliga 2 for a £6million fee.

The defensive midfielder totalled 41 club appearances in the season, including eight games in the Champions League, but the Hammers may face some competition for his signature from within the Premier League.

 

TOP STORY – WEST HAM SET SIGHTS ON LILLE'S BIG BELGIAN YOUNGSTER

According to The Athletic, West Ham had a £25million bid rejected by the French club, but the Evening Standard claims that the English side are confident an increased bid of £30m plus add-ons will get the job done.

However, The Athletic's report states that there is also interest in Onana coming from Arsenal, Liverpool and Newcastle United, which could throw a wrench in West Ham's plans.

West Ham appear to still have plenty of business to take care of, with the Evening Standard also linking them with a £30m move for 20-year-old Chelsea striker Armando Broja, as well as trying to convince Jesse Lingard to return after a successful loan stint in the latter half of the 2020-2021 season.

 

ROUND-UP

– According to Sport, Barcelona are trying to attach Memphis Depay to their offer for Sevilla centre-back Jules Kounde after not meeting the €65m asking price, while Marca claims Chelsea have already agreed to personal terms with him and have offered Sevilla €55m.

– AS is reporting that Atletico Madrid have enquired with Cristiano Ronaldo's representatives about the superstar's interest in joining the club.

Leeds United and West Ham are said to be competing for £34m Rennes striker Martin Terrier, according to L'Equipe.

– Calciomercato claims Paris Saint-Germain have been offering Georginio Wijnaldum to Roma and Milan in an effort to move him on from the club, despite arriving on a free transfer 12 months ago.

– Fabrizio Romano claims Manchester City have a bid ready to go for 23-year-old Brighton fullback Marc Cucurella to replace the outgoing Oleksandr Zinchenko.

Borussia Dortmund striker Sebastien Haller has withdrawn from their pre-season camp in Switzerland after discovering a tumour, the club has confirmed.

The Ivory Coast international, who signed for the Black and Yellow on a four-year deal earlier this month from Ajax, has returned to Germany for further tests.

The Bundesliga outfit asked for the privacy of the 28-year-old and his family to be respected, adding they would provide further updates when possible.

Haller initially complained of feeling unwell after a training session on Monday, before subsequent medical examinations discovered a tumour on his testicle.

"This news today came as a shock to Sebastien Haller and to all of us," sporting director Sebastian Kehl stated.

"The entire BVB family wishes Sebastien a full recovery as soon as possible and that we can hug him again soon. We will do everything in our power to ensure that he receives the best possible treatment."

Haller's move to Dortmund marks his second Bundesliga spell, after previously playing for Eintracht Frankfurt, and comes on the back of an impressive resurgence at Ajax following a lacklustre period with West Ham.

The forward finished last season as the Eredivisie's top scorer, with 21 goals in 31 games.

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