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Rising star Götze ditches Dortmund for Bayern

Champions League semi-finalists Borussia Dortmund confirmed on Tuesday that Germany star Mario Götze will join Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich next season, in a deal reported to be worth €37 million ($48.2 million).

Rising star Götze ditches Dortmund for Bayern
Photo: DPA

The 20-year-old attacking midfielder was under contract at Dortmund until 2016 but a release clause allows him to leave for that astronomical sum, according to German daily Bild.

Dortmund confirmed that Götze’s agent, Volker Struth, had recently informed them that Götze would be using the clause and will move to Bayern on July 1 – the first day ex-Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola takes charge as Munich coach.

The deal would make him the biggest transfer deal within Germany, passing the previous highest mark of €35 million which Bayern paid VfB Stuttgart for Mario Gomez in 2009. The €40 million Bayern paid Athletic Bilbao last year for Javi

Martinez is the Bundesliga’s current record transfer.

According to Ruhr Valley newspaper, Ruhr Nachrichten, Götze will be paid

€12 million a year at Bayern. Götze is the first addition to the Bavarian club’s squad for next season, while Barcelona, Manchester City and Arsenal had all reportedly been interested in the young German.

“We are of course exceedingly disappointed but must stress that both Mario and his advisers have behaved with absolutely conformity within the contract,” said Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke.

The timing of the deal does little to help Dortmund, who host Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-final, first leg on Wednesday, but will boost Bayern, who are home to Barcelona on Tuesday in the other last-four clash.

Dortmund coach Jügen Klopp and director of sport Michael Zorc have asked Borussia fans to support Götze in his last four league games for the club he joined as an eight-year-old in 2001 and especially in the Champions League tie.

Götze is one of the rising stars of the Germany team, having made his debut as an 18-year-old in October 2010 and scored his first goal in an outstanding display on his first start in the 3-2 friendly win over Brazil in August 2011.

While his addition to the star-studded Bayern squad is sure to boost the Bavarian giants, Dortmund fans have already vented their anger and frustration on Götze’s Facebook page with “traitor” being one of the kinder comments. Dortmund also revealed they had no contact from Bayern in the matter.

Having won the German league title for the last two seasons, Dortmund have missed out to Bayern this season. Munich won the Bundesliga a fortnight ago with six games to spare and a 20-point lead.

Born in Bavaria, only 120 kilometres (75 miles) from Munich, Götze joined Dortmund in 2001 as an eight-year-old and made his Bundesliga debut in 2009, aged 17. His first appearance for Germany came in October 2010.

He has since made 22 appearances for Joachim Löw’s Germany and scored five goals, the first of which came on his first start in the 3-2 friendly win over Brazil in August 2011, when the then 19-year-old was outstanding.

AFP/mry

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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