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Contract talks

FCB aiming for speedy decisions

Bastian Schweinsteiger signed a contract extension at the weekend, but the midfielder is just one of a number of senior players mulling over new deals at the present time. “We have a few things still to do over the next few days,” Uli Hoeneß declared on Saturday as the players prepared to depart for the winter vacation. “We may be announcing one or two decisions this week, or in early January at the latest,” Hoeneß continued. summarises the most pressing questions concerning the playing staff at the current time.

Mark van Bommel
The FCB captain’s contract expires at the end of the season. The club is keen to retain the 31-year-old’s services, and tabled a new offer on Friday after what chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge described as “a friendly conversation.“ “It’s up to him whether to accept it or not,” commented Franz Beckenbauer. Added Hoeneß: “Mark will give us his decision after the winter break.“

Zé Roberto
Jürgen Klinsmann has praised the Brazilian veteran, who said last summer this would be his final season in European football, for “top-class performances in the first half of the campaign.“ Indeed, it now appears the 34-year-old may be poised to extend his current deal one last time beyond its expiry date of 30 June 2009. “His agent has told us Zé would be interested in staying at Bayern Munich,” Rummenigge revealed. Klinsmann said he would be “delighted if he’d keep playing for another season.“

José Ernesto Sosa
The Argentine playmaker joined Bayern a year and a half ago, but has been unable to improve on the status of squad player in that time. However, the German champions remain convinced of the 23-year-old’s quality, and Sosa may be sent out on loan for the second half of the current season, allowing him to gain much-needed match practice. “Unfortunately, he’s not made the breakthrough here yet,” Rummenigge commented, “we’ve had a few enquiries, and it’s likely he’ll go out on loan in January.“

Ivica Olic
The Croatia hitman is out of contract in Hamburg at the end of the season, and Bayern have already named him as a target for next term’s squad. “He’s an interesting player,” commented Beckenbauer. “We’re talking to him. We’ll have to wait and see if we can work something out,“ Hoeneß reported.