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Hansi Flick has admitted that he wanted three players currently at Chelsea to be added to his Bayern Munich squad, but maintains that he has suffered no falling out over transfers with sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic.
After seeing Callum Hudson-Odoi burst onto the scene at Stamford Bridge, every effort was made to take him to Germany, with interest rekindled in the England international during the summer of 2020.
The Bundesliga champions were in the market for attacking talent at that stage, with Timo Werner and Kai Havertz – domestic rivals at RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen before heading to west London – among the others that Flick looked at before settling on luring Leroy Sane away from Manchester City.
Flick told Sky Deutschland amid reports that failure to land top targets has led to a strained relationship with Salihamidzic: “It is always said that Hudson-Odoi and [Serginho] Dest were my desired players, but they were our desired players.
“We decided that we wanted to add players for the wide areas and that is what we did. Havertz, Werner and Sane were mentioned, I would have loved to have all three, but we all decided on Sane. He’s a player who makes a difference.”
Goal learned during the January window of 2019 that four bids from Allianz Arena were tabled for Hudson-Odoi, with the last coming in at £35 million ($45m).
All approaches were knocked back by Chelsea, who eventually tied the 20-year-old to a new long-term contractto 2024.
Bayern returned with a loan request in October 2020, as Hudson-Odoi struggled for regular time under Frank Lampard, but those efforts were also rebuffed.
Two leading lights in German football had been attracting plenty of interest prior to making big-money moves to England.
Bayern kept a close eye on proceedings but eventually found themselves priced out of the market.
Werner, who would have been aware of Robert Lewandowski’s prolific presence at Bayern, ended up seeing a £47.5m ($64m) clause in his contract triggered by Chelsea.
The Premier League heavyweights then splashed out a further £70m ($95m) on buying into the potential of 21-year-old playmaker Havertz.
All of that left Bayern pushing through a deal for Germany international winger Sane.
He had endured injury issues towards the end of his time at Manchester City and is still searching for a spark back in his homeland.
The 25-year-old has made 31 appearances across all competitions this season, registering eight goals and eight assists.