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Javi Martinez to Bayern Munich: The Best £40 Million Can Buy

BARCELONA, SPAIN - DECEMBER 21:  Javi Martinez of Athletic Bilbao looks on during the round of last 16 Copa del Rey match between FC Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao at the Camp Nou stadium on December 21, 2010 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Jasper Juinen/Getty Images)
Jasper Juinen/Getty Images
Jeremy ClemmonsContributor IIIAugust 18, 2012

It looks as if Athletic Bilbao's Javi Martinez is set for a record-breaking £40 million move to Bayern Munich, per Yahoo UK.  

Already bolstering the attacking strength of their squad with the earlier signings of Xerdan Shaqiri and Mario Mandzukic, the German powerhouse have turned their attention toward fixing things farther back.

Martinez is a tall, powerful and versatile player. He's capable at playing either central midfielder or centerback—apparently a quality that Munich greatly admires, as Luiz Gustavo and Anatoliy Tymoshchuk have similar talents.

However, Martinez, who is both a Spanish international and World Cup winner, offers something a bit different than those players: world-class quality.

Bilbao's reluctance to sell their prized asset—Martinez's buyout clause was inarguable £40 million—seemed to only be matched by Bayern Munich's realization that Bastian Schweinsteiger had to be "insured" by someone of equal or near-equal quality. 

That's not to say Martinez will play in the midfield, per se, but the option is certainly there.  And given Munich's vulnerability last season once Schweinsteiger went off injured, that's a very enticing fail-safe. 

More likely, Martinez will play at center back. The Champions League runners-up will finally have an adequate replacement for the player they shouldn't have let go: Borussia Dortmund's Mats Hummels. 

Bayern Munich begin their league campaign next Saturday (9:30 ET) against SpVgg Greuther Furth .  

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