Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcântara will not be sold to free up space in the club's midfield, the Bavarians' sporting director has confirmed.
There has been a lot of talk about Thiago's future ahead of the new campaign following an underwhelming campaign by his high standards, with speculation increasing after Germany legend Lothar Matthäus claimed that the midfielder wasn't good enough to play for Bayern Munich.
But sporting director Hasan Salihamidžić has confirmed the 27-year-old will still be at the Allianz Arena, even following the arrival of Schalke 04 superstar Leon Goretzka, which will nearly take Bayern into double figures for midfielders in their squad.
"Of course we are planning with him," Salihamidžić told Suddeutsche Zeitung. "It will be an interesting battle for places with nine midfielders."
In what lifetime Thiago Alcantara can sit on a bench for 90 mins?— Jamil S Young (@JamilSYoung) July 1, 2018
Although Thiago remains in the club's long-term plans, it is understood that Bayern Munich will look to offload three of their central midfielders this summer.
Bayern's more experienced players, most notably Javi Martínez, Arturo Vidal or Thomas Müller are at risk of being axed this summer, while Sebastian Rudy and Corentin Tolisso have also been linked with moves away despite only arriving at the club last season.
Former Swansea City loanee Renato Sanches is believed to be one of the most likely players who will be moved on this summer unless he can impress the club's new manager, Niko Kovač, during their pre-season games - the first of which is against Paris Saint-Germain in Austria on July 21.