Franck Ribery: Eden Hazard, not Kevin De Bruyne, suits Bayern Munich
Franck Ribery does not believe speculation that Kevin De Bruyne is being lined up as a potential replacement for himself or Arjen Robben at Bayern Munich, saying Eden Hazard was a more logical choice.
De Bruyne has been in excellent form with Wolfsburg this season and has been strongly linked with clubs including Manchester City and Bayern, with Sport Bild claiming the German champions are considering a move for the Belgian as an eventual successor to their wingers, who are both now 31.
Former France international Ribery, who is under contract until 2017, has struggled with injuries throughout the ongoing campaign, and started only nine Bundesliga game, and is currently facing a race against time to be fit for the trip to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.
Robben, whose deal is also due to expire in 2017, has also suffered fitness problems since the turn of the year and is currently out with an abdominal muscle injury.
However, Ribery played down the suggestion that Bayern need to find immediate replacements for either of their wingers.
"Believe me, in this world, you won't find players like me or Arjen that easily, with all due respect," Ribery told German sports weekly Sport Bild. "Of course, the club needs to contemplate about what happens once we have left, but Arjen and I are not done yet."
He also rejected the idea that former Chelsea midfielder De Bruyne could be the man to replace either of them, saying: "He's a super player, but when I see him I note that he's different to Arjen and me.
"He's not a player who takes the ball and starts dribbling, and likes to have the opponent in front of him. De Bruyne's super when he has the space on the counter attack, but at Bayern you usually only have three, four metres -- no huge spaces. But he is a good player, and he is still young. He can still learn."
In any case, Ribery believes that a better option would be Chelsea star Eden Hazard.
"He attacks all of the time. He loves to run at his opponent," he said of the Belgian, before joking: "But he plays at Chelsea. This could be very expensive for Bayern."
Ribery, meanwhile, said he did not know if Bayern boss Pep Guardiola planned to stay on beyond his current contract.
The former Barcelona coach is tied to the club until 2016 but there has been extensive speculation as to whether he will prolong his stay, and Ribery said: "A lot of it is also down to the coach's wishes. And, today, we don't even know who will be the coach by then [after the contract expires]."