Shortly after the United States' World Cup campaign concluded, German outlets started running stories speculating on the future of Julian Green, who was dominant for Bayern Munich's reserves last season and scored a goal with his first World Cup touch. Here's a rough translation from a story in Merkur-Online.
Although Bayern uses loans every so often, one is probably not planned for Green. Philipp Lahm (VfB Stuttgart), Toni Kroos (Bayer Leverkusen) and David Alaba (1899 Hoffenheim), for example, have walked this path to the first team. The breakthrough of today's key players came with another team initially. Since, they've matured into world stars at Bayern.
However, coach Pep Guardiola seems to be high on diamonds in the rough and wants to educate them himself. Green wants to fight for a first team place, despite lots of competition, but his chances might not be so bad. Mario Mandzukic will leave the club in all likelihood, thus, Lewandowski and Pizarro are the only strikers the Spaniard has left at the club. Also, a role as a backup to superstar Franck Ribéry is conceivable.
Pizarro could also leave, but at 35 years old, it's possible that he's perfectly content with collecting a sizable paycheck to sit on the bench and be an emergency backup. There have also been some rumors floating around that Xherdan Shaqiri could be sold. Therefore, it's not terribly outside the realm of possibility that Green could be the primary backup at a couple of spots. That's Green's best case scenario.
But there's also an equally plausible disaster scenario, which just got a little bit worse. On Monday, Valencia announced that they agreed a fee with Bayern Munich for Juan Bernat, a 21-year-old who, like Green, is probably at his best on the left wing. If Mandzukic and Shaqiri don't leave, while Bernat secures a spot in the Bayern first team, suddenly Green's in the reserves again.
The good news for Green is that Bernat has also played plenty of left back, so it's possible that Guardiola sees his future there. After all, he plays David Alaba in that spot now, moved Philipp Lahm to midfielder to start a right back that can't defend and made Dani Alves into a huge star. Bernat could be a full-time fullback, with Diego Contento and Holger Badstuber -- a central defender who can play left back --on their way out.
Bernat's arrival is a slightly worrying sign for USMNT fans who want to see Green get some playing time, but it is possible that they're seen as completely different players who don't play the same position. Cross your fingers.