Barcelona are set to sign Polish striker Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich. It’s a bold move by a heavily indebted club looking to acquire a world-class scorer who can finally fill the void left by the departure of Lionel Messi.
European clubs have reached an agreement in principle to move Lewandowski to the Camp Nou.
“We have reached a verbal agreement with Barcelona. It’s good to have clarity for all parties,” Bayern president Herbert Hainer said on the club’s Twitter account on Saturday. “Robert is an incredible player and he has won everything with us. We are incredibly grateful to him.”
According to Spanish media reports, the transfer will cost Barcelona around 50 million euros.
Lewandowski, 33, one of the most prolific football scorers of the last decade, will greatly improve Barcelona’s chances of rebuilding a competitive team after winning nothing last season.
During the last 12 seasons in Germany’s top flight, Lewandowski has scored a total of 312 goals in 384 Bundesliga games for Bayern and his previous club Borussia Dortmund. Last season he scored 35 goals in 34 matches and was the top scorer in the Bundesliga for the seventh time.
Barcelona’s top scorers have been Memphis Depay and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with 13 goals each in their last campaign.
He is also a recognized winner with a total of 10 Bundesliga titles and more than a dozen top-level cup victories, including the 2020 Champions League winner’s medal.
Only the dominance of Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo over the past decade has likely prevented Lewandowski from receiving more personal accolades.
But Lewandowski said at the end of May that “my story with Bayern Munich is over” after talks over a contract extension with Bayern broke down. He had one more season left on his contract with the Bavarian team.
He will now join a team coached by Javi Hernandez that has relied on Aubameyang and Ferran Torres for their goals since they joined last winter when Depay was injured and lost his starting striker position. It will be prepared by young and gifted Spanish midfielders Pedri Gonzalez and Gavi Paez.
With a veteran like Lewandowski soon to join the team, the club is clearly betting on winning titles again in the short term. Last season, Barcelona finished second in Spain behind Madrid and failed to progress beyond the Champions League group stage.
The sale allows Bayern to capitalize on a player who turns 34 next month, who would become a free agent next year and has made clear his desire to leave.
If the fee is confirmed, it would be Bayern’s record selling fee, exceeding the €40m the German champions received from Juventus for Douglas Costa in 2018.