Hoeness: Hats off to Athletic Bilbao for standing firm in Javi Martinez talks

The Basque side had refused to let the midfielder leave for anything under €40 million, and earned the respect of the Bayern Munich chief in so doing
Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has complimented Athletic Bilbao for their firmness in talks over the proposed transfer of Javi Martinez.

The Basque side stated earlier this summer that the versatile midfielder would only be available if a club matched his buy-out clause, and they have stood firm over their €40 million valuation of the Spain international ever since.

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Athletic's hefty asking price prompted Barcelona to turn their interest to Arsenal's Alex Song instead, but Bayern remained unfazed and are ready to splash the cash on Javi Martinez.

"Hats off to Athletic. They told us from the start that we would have to pay €40 million or the deal was off," Hoeness stated to reporters.

"They did not change their position during the negotiations and stood firm."

Bayern are yet to agree personal terms with Javi Martinez, but they are expected to wrap up the deal in the upcoming days.

Nevertheless, head coach Jupp Heynckes has stressed that it's not a done deal just yet.

"You will have to wait until both clubs come with a statement. He is not a Bayern player, so there's no need for me to discuss him," Heynckes stated at a press conference.

The Bavarians have already added the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri, Dante, Mario Mandzukic and Claudio Pizarro to their squad this summer.