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Bundesliga News

Gnabry and Hofmann explain reluctance to renew contracts

By Peter Vice

Speaking from the camp of Hans Dieter Flick's "Nationalmannschft", two German national team regulars offered up explanations on their complicated contractual status on Thursday. 

Both players enter the final year of their contracts next season. 

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With some members of the German press zeroing in on the purported selfishness of attacker Serge Gnabry to refuse what is reported to be a reasonable offer for a contract extension, the 26-year-old Stuttgart native answered questions about his club situation from the German national team camp on Thursday.

""It's not that we players only think about about money," Gnabry said, "Other matters play a big role in feeling welcome. Appreciation should be a two-way-street, from club to player and player to club."

Gnabry has reportedly turned down an offer that would see him earn close to €20 million in salary. It remains unclear what the "appreciation" he mentioned refers to specifically. The national team starter spoke mostly in general terms. He did speak of his role as a center-forward under former German national team head-coach Joachim Löw, but this didn't seem to have much relevance to the FCB.

"I already think that I've done a pretty good job in recent years," Gnabry noted when answering a question about Robert Lewandowski's potential departure and Sadio Mané's potential arrival, "I've even done decently the center forward role, despite the fact that it's not my regular position."

The only potential read on the tea leaves from that statement might indicate that Gnabry feels he shouldn't always be deployed on the flanks at Bayern. The player offered up no further specifics. Reporters then turned to Gladbach midfielder--who also regularly plays out of position for the national team--Jonas Hofmann.

Hofmann appeared to be a bit disconcerted by the fact that Gladbach's recent inability to secure a new head coach in the form of former trainer Lucien Favre. The big administrative misstep that saw Favre slip through the fingers of the BMG front office does constitute a managerial humiliation of sorts. The club administrative team still seems woefully disorganized after Max Eberl's departure.

"The timing just isn't right at this moment," Hofmann noted, ""I can only hope that the [coaching] issue is resolved quickly so that everyone can start planning. An answer would simplify the situation for the club, the players, and everyone involved."

Hofmann revealed that he had been in contact with BMG sporting director Roland Virkus over the phone whilst away on national team duty these past few weeks. The 25-year-old also emphasized that he appreciated the updates, but wouldn't make any decision on his future until face-to-face meetings were possible.

"It's important to me that, when I have conversations, I look my counterpart in the eye," he stressed, "Discussing such things over the phone is not my style."

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