Barcelona, Real Madrid Not A ‘Step Up’ From Bayern

Robert Lewandowski has told Sport Bild that a move to Barcelona or Real Madrid would not have been a “step up” from German champions Bayern Munich.

Lewandowski extended his contract with the Bavarians until 2021 last month. The Poland striker had been been linked with a move to Real after one of the striker’s agents told Der Spiegel that talks with the Spanish club had taken place.

And, according to his agent, Lewandowski was also offered a world-record salary in excess of €40 million per year from an unnamed Chinese club, before opting to remain at Bayern whom he joined on a free transfer from rivals Borussia Dortmund in 2014.

“Bayern is one of the best teams in the world — on a par with Real Madrid and Barcelona,” Lewandowski said. “A move to Barca or Real wouldn’t have been a step up for me.”

“Furthermore, I’m very happy in Munich.”

Since joining Bayern, Lewandowski has added two more German league titles to the pair he won at the Westfalenstadion under Jurgen Klopp. He finished as top scorer last season in the Bundesliga with 30 goals, including a five-goal haul in nine minutes as a substitute against Wolfsburg.

He scored both of Bayern’s goals, including a last-minute winner as the league leaders got off to a winning start after the winter break with a 2-1 victory in Freiburg.

And Lewandowski believes Treble-chasing Bayern’s squad size is “perfect” and can be a decisive advantage in the hunt for trophies.

“I believe having too big a squad is the wrong way of going about things,” he said.

“When there’s too many players, you’re always thinking in the back of your mind if you make mistakes you’ll soon be on the bench. Also, it’s also hard to form a good team spirit.

“The number of players is exactly right. It ensures every player is motivated and gives their all in training. Everyone sees a chance of playing in the first eleven.

“It’s not as if we have only 14 players. I think the squad size is perfect and can be our biggest trump card when battling for trophies.”