Bayern Munich Close In On Athletic Bilbao Enforcer Javi Martinez

Man City and Barca pipped to Bilbao battler.
Bayern Munich are set to beat Man City and Barcelona to the signing of Athletic Bilbao star Javi Martinez, after beginning negotiations with the Basque club.

The central midfielder has been the subject of intense transfer speculation with summer, with Europe’s leading clubs chasing the 23-year-old’s signature.

But Bayern are set to land Martinez after president Uli Hoeness revealed the club has been given the “green light” by its governing board to complete a deal.

“The board has given the green light, and in the coming days we will tell if the transfer is done or not,” Hoeness is quoted as saying by

“The coach and the sporting director are convinced that he [Martinez] will solve our problems. The sporting decision has been made, but now we have to find an economic solution. I will be pleased if it comes off.”

Bayern have been chasing Martinez for some time and both City and Barca have turned to other targets, leaving the path clear for the German giants.

English Champions City have landed £12m Jack Rodwell from Everton, while Barca are chasing Arsenal’s Alex Song.

Champions League runners-up Bayern will have to pay around £34m to land Martinez, however.

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