Bayern veteran Kahn keen for Bundesliga exit

BAYERN MUNICH’S German international goalkeeper Oliver Kahn has insisted he is ready for a move abroad despite the Bundesliga giants’ determination to hold on to him.

Kahn, whose contract runs until 2006, yesterday said: “I’ve already explained my reasons for a transfer, in order to experience something else. In order to clarify things I want to have talks with Bayern bosses.

“I stress once again. I’m in good form, Bayern is a great club, but it wouldn’t be normal not to ask questions after nine successful years. At nearly 34 years these thoughts are legitimate,” he added, just a day after Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld had ruled out a move saying “no money in the world could buy Oliver Kahn.”

Kahn, who made his name with Dortmund before joining Bayern in 1994, earns a reported 7.65m a year and his contract runs until 2006.

Kahn’s team-mate, French defender Bixente Lizarazu, is contracted until 2004 but Bayern president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge also yesterday he was considering extending the deal.

In France, meanwhile, Lyon are virtually assured of their second consecutive French league title after a 1-1 draw with Montpellier on Tuesday. Lyon have a three-point advantage and a massively superior goal difference over their closest challengers Marseille going into their final match, at home to Guingamp on Saturday.

Monaco threw away their chance of a first title for three years when they were beaten 3-1 at Guingamp. That result leaves Didier Deschamps’ team third on 64 points, one point behind Marseille, who are on 65 after their 4-2 thrashing of Sedan. Lyon have 68.

Lyon’s progress to the second title in their history suffered a serious setback when Montpellier took the lead after 12 minutes at the Stade de la Mosson.

Habib Bamogo shrugged off the marking of Jeremie Brechet to slot the ball past goalkeeper Gregory Coupet.

Lyon drew level when Sidney Govou superbly cut in from the right wing to create an easy chance for midfielder Juninho, who lashed the ball into the roof of the net. The Brazilian came closest to grabbing the winner in the second half when he hit the crossbar with an audacious shot from 40 yards.

Lyon coach Paul Le Guen was happy to declare his side champions, saying: “We were very good in our final matches. We were consistent over the end of the season and this is the reward for a group of players who know what they want and will do everything to reach their goal.”

Having started the day in second position, Monaco made a disastrous start when Stephane Carnot put Guingamp ahead in the first half. Carnot scored a second goal on the hour after being gifted the ball by the Monaco defence. But Deschamps’ pulled a goal back four minutes later through Congolese striker Shabani Nonda, who fired home after exchanging passes with Ludovic Giuly, only for Florent Malouda to score the decisive third goal in stoppage time.

Deschamps said his players were exhausted after winning the League Cup on Saturday. “It is inhuman to play a championship decider three days after a final,” said France’s 1998 World Cup-winning captain. “But congratulations to Lyon, who amassed more points than anyone else.”

Marseille moved into second spot and a ticket into the European Champions League despite throwing away a two-goal lead at home to Sedan.

Sebastien Perez and Cyril Chapuis created the lead but Pius N’Diefi pulled a goal back and Perez put into his own net to level the scores. Brahim Hemdani’s sidefooted shot gave Marseille a 3-2 lead and Lamine Sakho completed the job in injury time.

Marseille must not slip up at Nantes on Saturday, knowing Monaco are just a point behind and play Troyes at home, who are already relegated.

Bordeaux stayed fourth after a 1-1 draw at Nice, tying them on 61 points with Sochaux and Auxerre in the race for a UEFA Cup place.

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