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New deal for Ribéry?

Chairman: We’ll talk when the time’s right

Bayern are hopeful of Franck Ribéry opting to extend his stay in Munich after the France midfield star issued a strong hint in that direction at the weekend. “The club will already have an idea, and I already have an idea. Things happen fast in football sometimes. A short meeting, and things could be decided,” the 26-year-old was reported as saying following Bayern’s 5-1 victory away to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.

Speaking on Monday ahead of the squad’s departure for their opening Champions League group fixture away to Maccabi Haifa, Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed the club would be extremely interested in offering the player a longer contract.

No time pressure

“We’ve noted what was said. We’ll deal with it in a sensible way. We’ll talk the matter over internally in peace and quiet, and hold talks when the time’s right,” Rummenigge commented. “But I certainly won’t be announcing exactly when we’ll do it. There’s no time pressure.”

The France international’s current contract with Munich expires on 30 June 2011. “Given how long it has to run, we can sleep peacefully at night, for the moment at least,” continued Rummenigge, confirming the club’s desire to prolong Ribéry’s spell in Munich well beyond the end of his existing deal. “We’ve always said it would be good to bind a player of this quality to Bayern Munich over the long term.”

Crowd favourite

“I feel well-loved here. It’s especially good to be trusted by the important people at the club. The way the fans reacted to my comeback was good too. That always spurs you on as a player,” Ribéry was also reported as saying. “These words will definitely please all Bayern Munich fans,” Rummenigge responded.

The club has “never had a problem” with Franck Ribéry, the chairman emphasised. “Some people have tried to drive a wedge between Bayern and Franck Ribéry, or between the coach and Franck Ribéry. This effort was doomed to failure from the start,” Rummenigge declared.