Date: 24th July 2006 at 6:36pm
Written by:

Ruud van Nistelrooy returned to training this morning with the rest of the Manchester United squad but the stories of an imminent departure refuse to go away especially as Sir Alex Ferguson has questioned whether the players ‘heart is in it’.

Bayern Munich are still said to be interested in taking Ruud to the Bundesliga but President Franz Beckenbauer has admitted money might be tight for the full £15million asking price.

Beckenbauer said: ‘We are five million euros (£3.4million) away from Manchester United’s valuation but the chances are still high. But if it does work out, I could imagine us giving away Roy Makaay or Claudio Pizarro.’

Rummenigge has also commented – quite wrongly in my opinion – in a German newspaper saying: ‘Van Nistelrooy has told us that he can imagine playing for Bayern Munich. We have already spoken about money. The rest is up to Manchester United. They are not interested in getting rid of him for a bargain price. He is one of the best strikers in Europe. He is a guarantee for goals and he is a personality.’

Isn’t that tapping up? How does he know what van Nistelrooy wants, has he had permission to talk to the player from United?

Rummenigge has also said there is no great rush ‘We have time. The transfer window is still open for another five weeks.’

Sir Alex Ferguson told the News of the World in what is becoming a bit of a transfer saga:

‘Ruud asked away, it is as simple as that. He asked away before the Arsenal Cup final last year, then asked away through his representative and now has asked away himself in writing. Quite frankly, if he wants to leave there really is no point trying to persuade him to stay.’

Adding: ‘If a player’s heart is not in it then you have to make a decision. I couldn’t tell you why he wants to leave or why his heart isn’t in it, all I can tell you is he has asked away and we have accepted that.’