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The transfer speculation in Bavaria continues to mount…

According to a report in Tuesday’s Bild, Bayern Munich have identified Schalke goalkeeper Manuel Neuer as a summer transfer target and the one they see as the successor to Michael Rensing.    

Following Oliver Kahn’s retirement, the Bayern hierarchy put their faith in Rensing, but the 25-year-old was unceremoniously dropped by Juergen Klinsmann after the 5-1 loss at Wolfsburg, which underlined a largely uncertain season.  

Now it seems that the incoming trainer, Louis van Gaal, has targeted 23-year-old Neuer as the one he wants in the Bayern goal. The tabloid paper has revealed that preliminary talks have already taken place.    

Neuer will be on international duty between May 27 and June 3 in Asia with Germany, where Bundestrainer Joachim Loew has assured him he will make his international debut.    

So what are the chances of Neuer joining Bayern? Ten days ago Neuer himself stated, “Moving to Bayern is in principle out of the question.  I have a contract at Schalke until 2012 and want to stay here and help with the rebuilding.”  

His advisor Thomas Kroth also told Bild that “Manuel has not negotiated with Bayern and there has been no approach from Munich.”  

The fact, however, is that if and when an approach comes from Bayern, it is very difficult for many players to turn down, and Uli Hoeness has already intimated that the Bavarians will be signing a goalkeeper.   

Bayern will be playing Champions League football next season, while Schalke will not be in Europe at all. So is Neuer to Bayern so out of the question?  

There is already speculation also that should Neuer leave, then new Schalke trainer Felix Magath would raid ex-club Wolfsburg for Swiss 'keeper Diego Benaglio.  

Mathew Burt, Goal.com

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