The World Cup-winning defender is due to become a free agent in the summer of 2021 and admits that a fresh start in a new country may appeal to him
Jerome Boateng is not ready to give up on Bayern Munich just yet, but a man heading towards free agency in 2021 admits that a new challenge – potentially outside of Europe – does appeal to him.
The 32-year-old has spent all but one season of his distinguished playing career to date in his native Germany – with a brief stint at Manchester City the only anomaly on his impressive CV.
Having previously spent time with Hertha Berlin and Hamburg, Bayern took Boateng back to his homeland in 2011 when it became clear that an English adventure was over.
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The World Cup winner has enjoyed considerable success during his time at the Allianz Arena, collecting Bundesliga and Champions League honours, with 333 appearances taken in across nine years.
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Boateng is far from being finished, with there plenty of football left in him, but it may be that he embraces the opportunity to head away from a comfort zone next summer and spread his wings.
“As you have correctly stated, I am a person who loves to get to know new cities, new cultures and new people,” Boateng told Goal on his future plans.
“I’m actually not the type who likes to stay in one place for a long time. Accordingly, Paris, London, but also cities outside Europe are interesting for me.”
Boateng added, with Bild having recently reported that his contract at Bayern will not be extended: “I was surprised by the coverage and would have liked to have sat down beforehand. But now I don’t deal with it anymore.
“I have always said that I would like to get to know something different and take on a new challenge. I feel really good and in top shape and have delivered and performed in the last few months. That is also the feedback I get from Hansi Flick and my team-mates. That is the most important thing for me.
“My focus is 100 per cent on defending the five titles from last season with the club. When the day comes when we part ways, I will look back proudly on these years and many successes with this club. Not many footballers are allowed to experience something like this. At the same time, I look ahead full of motivation and look forward to what’s coming.”
Boateng is not the only high-profile performer to be edging towards the exits at Bayern, with David Alaba another of those to have entered the final year of his current contract.
Talks with the versatile Austrian regarding an extension have broken down, leading to him being linked with the likes of Liverpool and Real Madrid, but Boateng is reluctant to be drawn on what the future could hold for an ambitious colleague.
He said of the Alaba saga: “That is a very difficult subject. I do not know the details and therefore cannot comment.
“I know David is a great guy and a great footballer – and I can only say that his character is not shown correctly if he is portrayed as greedy for money in the news.”
For now, both Boateng and Alaba will continue to give their all to the Bayern cause for as long as their services are required, with Hansi Flick having united a star-studded camp since inheriting the managerial reins from Niko Kovac.
Boateng added on his boss: “Shortly after he took over, he said, ‘Jerome, I know what you can do. The most important thing is that you get fit’.
“In December he said it was my decision whether to go or stay. But he said that he would be happy if I stayed. Hansi Flick assured me that if I perform well, I’ll get the same opportunities as everyone else. That was enough for me.”