Borussia Dortmund is still in the bones of the huge chance of missing the German championship, but BVB is already looking to the next season. Which pieces of the puzzle are still missing to finally snatch the shell from FC Bayern? How do you replace superstar Jude Bellingham’s supposedly imminent departure? sport.de names the biggest construction sites of the black and yellow.
“There needs to be diversity in the squad,” explained BVB sports director Sebastian Kehl to “Bild”. A profile that is sought after: “We need types! We need characters! We need players who defend themselves and embody resilience.” BVB is looking for those “wild aha moments” that were last experienced after the young Julien Duranville was signed.
BVB transfer construction sites: This is the starting position
It is known that substitute keeper Luca Unbehaun, full-backs Felix Passlack and Raphael Guerreiro, midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud and attacker Anthony Modeste are leaving BVB. Midfield leader Jude Bellingham is also likely to switch to Real Madrid for more than 100 million euros.
Ansgar Knauff, who is currently on loan, is also associated with staying at Eintracht Frankfurt, while Thorgan Hazard (PSV Eindhoven), who is also on loan, should not play a real role in Borussia’s plans. The same applies to left-back Nico Schulz and defender Thomas Meunier has also been a candidate for a change of scenery for weeks.
BVB transfer construction sites: The defensive outside must be refilled
The outside positions in the back four are among BVB’s largest positions. If you take Meunier and Schulz out of the equation, there are only two seasoned full-backs left in the squad in Julian Ryerson and Marius Wolf.
Nominally, 23-year-old Mateu Morey and 18-year-old Tom Rothe are still available, but it is doubtful that Morey (more than 800 days lost since moving to BVB in 2019) will make the connection to the first team again. Rothe was recently clearly counted by BVB coach Edin Terzic.
On the other side is the supposedly perfect commitment of Ramy Bensebaini, who has not extended his expiring contract with Borussia Mönchengladbach and is to switch to BVB on a free transfer.
Another option that could fit perfectly into BVB’s prey scheme is said to be 18-year-old Spaniard Ivan Fresneda. The Madrilene made 22 appearances for Real Valladolid in the Spanish top flight in 2022/23. However, BVB is said to have a financially strong competitor in FC Arsenal. There was recently a not inconsiderable fee of at least 20 million euros in the room.
Loosely, “Sport Bild” recently brought a much more prominent alternative into play with Lukas Klostermann. Advantage: The German international, whose contract with RB Leipzig ends in 2024, mostly plays as a right-back, but can also play on the left and in the center of defence. In view of the fact that the central defense is also not lavish, Klostermann would at least be an exciting personality.
BVB transfer construction sites: New Bellingham wanted
The fact that Jude Bellingham is leaving BVB is a done deal, and there is no question that the young Englishman will leave a huge gap in the center of midfield. Who follows the 19-year-old, however, is still in the stars.
Of course, there is no shortage of rumours. The hottest iron in the fire of the rumor mill now seems to be Edson Álvarez from Ajax Amsterdam (contract until 2025). The Mexican embodies the prototype of the “defensive type” that Kehl called for, but clearly focuses his skills on defensive tasks and is therefore a completely different type of player than Bellingham.
The 23-year-old Frenchman Enzo Le Fée from FC Lorient (contract until 2024) has a similar repertoire to Bellingham. Five goals and five assists in 34 Ligue 1 games speak for themselves.
A commitment from Youri Tielemans (Leicester City/contract expires) would be a real coup. The 26-year-old Belgian has often been traded at BVB, more than 150 appearances in the English Premier League are also a sign of enormous class. However, the free transfer and extremely coveted Tielemans should demand an enormous salary, which could shake up the salary structure of Dortmund.
The long traded and free transfer Daichi Kamada from Eintracht Frankfurt, on the other hand, is said to have decided against a commitment to BVB, Conor Galagher from Chelsea (contract until 2025) is more likely to play an expensive outsider role.
BVB transfer construction sites: Haller, Moukoko – and then?
There is also a need for action in the Ruhr area in the middle of the storm. New signing Sébastien Haller knew how to convince after surviving cancer shock, but behind the Ivorian the alternatives are few and far between. At the latest when Haller or super talent Youssoufa Moukoko get injured, the situation becomes precarious.
It is also unclear how 18-year-old Moukoko will deal with the role of substitute behind Haller. After all, the youngster had a strong season with seven goals and four assists in 26 league games and was only eleven times in the starting lineup.
A calm and experienced Joker would arguably be the perfect complement to the duo, but is hard to come by. Recently there have been rumors about a return from Werder Bremen for Marvin Ducksch. The 29-year-old from Dortmund comes from the BVB youth team and has a close connection to the club. However, twelve league goals and seven assists in 2022/23 suggest that Ducksch is called to something higher than the reserve role.
The same undoubtedly applies to Lois Openda, who shone with 20 goals in his first year in France at RC Lens and is likely to be too expensive to play a supporting role at BVB – especially since the Belgian is considered a classic center forward and tends not to be able to help out in other positions.
It cannot be ruled out that Dortmund will ultimately not bring in another attacker and, in an emergency, will order the more versatile offensive forces Karim Adeyemi, Donyell Malen or Marco Reus to the top. With the 18-year-old Dutchman Julian Rijkhoff, the U19 top scorer could also try to fill the gap.