James to rekin­dle ca­reer un­der Ancelotti at Bay­ern

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

After a frus­trat­ing spell at Real Madrid, James Ro­driguez will at­tempt to kick-start his ca­reer at Bay­ern Mu­nich next sea­son, back un­der the stew­ard­ship of Carlo Ancelotti. Colom­bian hot-shot James on Tues­day joined his for­mer Real boss at the Ger­man cham­pi­ons on a two-year loan.

Bay­ern have the op­tion to buy the 2014 World Cup top-scorer at the end of the deal. “Sign­ing James Ro­driguez was our coach Carlo Ancelotti’s big­gest wish, fol­low­ing their suc­cess­ful spell work­ing to­gether in Madrid,” said Bay­ern’s chair­man Karl-Heinz Rum­menigge.

“There’s no question that this trans­fer fur­ther in­creases the qual­ity in our team.” In­stead of fly­ing west to Los An­ge­les for Real’s tour of the USA, James, 25, will be jetting east with Bay­ern on Sun­day when the Ger­mans visit China and Sin­ga­pore. Bay­ern’s Ger­many de­fender Mats Hum­mels wasted no time in wel­com­ing the Colom­bian, who scored six goals at the World Cup, by writ­ing “Bien­venido @james­ro­driguez” on Twit­ter.

James will boost Bay­ern’s star-stud­ded at­tack along with fel­low new sign­ing Corentin Tolisso, 22, who has joined from French side Lyon for 41.5 mil­lion eu­ros ($47.3m). James’ loan deal suits all par­ties.

PROS­PER

Ancelotti has per­suaded Bay­ern of the player’s un­de­ni­able tal­ent with the Ger­man club hav­ing the chance to try be­fore they buy while Real have found a way to off-load the tal­ent they signed for 75 mil­lion eu­ros from Monaco in July 2014.

Ac­cord­ing to Ger­man daily Bild, Bay­ern will pay 10 mil­lion eu­ros per year for James and will have the op­tion to buy him for 35 mil­lion. James has the chance to again pros­per un­der Ancelotti. He is a big-name sum­mer sign­ing which Bay­ern need with Brazil’s Dou­glas Costa ne­go­ti­at­ing a trans­fer with Ju­ven­tus.

It’s un­fair to as­sume James was a fail­ure at Real as the at­tack­ing mid­fielder scored 36 goals with 38 as­sists in 110 games for the Span­ish gi­ants. The Colom­bian, who has a con­tract at Real un­til 2020, ar­rived at the Bern­abeu three years ago to much pomp and fan­fare. His best sea­son at Real was in 2014/15, when he scored 17 goals, with 18 as­sists, in 46 matches un­der Ancelotti, who played him in his favourite po­si­tion of at­tack­ing mid­fielder. He was de­ployed on the right side of the at­tack­ing mid­field, just be­hind Karim Ben­zema and winger Gareth Bale.

But Ro­driguez strug­gled for a place in Real’s star-stud­ded first team un­der Ancelotti’s suc­ces­sor Rafael Ben­itez, then Zine­dine Zi­dane, who had no room for him be­hind the three-man at­tack of Bale, Ben­zema and Cris­tiano Ron­aldo. James made just 13 start­ing ap­pear­ances last sea­son un­der Zi­dane in the Span­ish league with a fur­ther nine off the bench. It is not ob­vi­ous where he will play as Thi­ago Al­can­tara and Thomas Muller both want to play James’ pre­ferred num­ber ten role. Like­wise both Ar­jen Robben and Kings­ley Co­man like to come in off the right wing onto their left foot, just like Ro­driguez.

Ancelotti could well use James along­side Thi­ago in the at­tack­ing mid­field be­hind striker Robert Le­wandowski. Both Real and Bay­ern will hope Ancelotti can bring James back to his very best so that he heads off to next year’s World Cup some­where near his daz­zling 2014 form. —AFP

MU­NICH: Colom­bian mid­fielder James Ro­driguez (C), new re­cruit of Ger­man first di­vi­sion Bun­desliga foot­ball club Bay­ern Mu­nich, holds his new jersey as he poses with Bay­ern Mu­nich’s Ital­ian head coach Carlo Ancelotti (L) and the club’s CEO Karl-Heinz Rum­menigge (R) dur­ing an of­fi­cial pre­sen­ta­tion in Mu­nich, south­ern Ger­many, yes­ter­day. — AFP

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