Neuer Set to Captain Bayern

Since the retirement of club legend and inspirational captain Phillip Lahm earlier this year, there has been plenty of speculation in the local media about which player will adopt the armband from the outgoing 33-year-old. Names including Jerome Boateng and Thomas Muller were both rumoured to be in the running to adopt some extra responsibility this campaign but the club have recently announced that the captaincy will be handed to goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.

The Bayern number one has been at the club since 2011 making over 170 appearances for the Bundesliga champions since finalising his €22million transfer. The 31-year-old has already captained the national side and can boast a World Cup winners medal and five domestic titles.

Neuer missed the end of last season after sustaining a metatarsal injury in the UEFA Champions League but believes he is on course for the beginning of the new Bundesliga season when they host Leverkusen at the Allianz Arena. Bayern also face Dortmund in the DFL Supercup Final on August 5th.

The club are set to embark upon their pre-season tour of China where they will face AC Milan and Arsenal amongst others but have left Neuer in Munich as he continues to build up his fitness ahead of a pivotal campaign. Thomas Muller is acting as stand-in captain until the goalkeeper's return.

Bayern wrapped up their fifth consecutive title in May, finishing 15 points ahead of RB Leipzig and ending the season with a 4-1 victory over Freiburg. They have been priced up as 1/8 favourites for success once again and are likely to be the cornerstone of many European football bets throughout the campaign. Punters can find the latest online tips on sites such as Footy Accumulators, including hints on how to be in with a chance of winning £250,000 in Sky Sports' weekly Super 6 competition.

Bayern have already bolstered their squad with the addition of James Rodriguez from Real Madrid. The 25-year-old struggled to break into the Los Blancos starting eleven and should add plenty of creativity to Carlo Ancelotti's side. Other new additions include Serge Gnabry from Werder Bremen, Corentin Tolisso from Lyon, and Niklas Sule from Hoffenheim.

Neuer cannot wait to get started and his return to fitness will provide a huge boost for everyone at the club. The stopper is not only one of the world's finest goalkeepers but also a terrific ambassador for the club both on and off the pitch and the 31-year-old is hoping to be fit enough to adorn the armband when he leads his side out against Leverkusen on August 18th.

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