After choosing not to renew his contract, Borussia Dortmund‘s Ilkay Gundogan’s list of potential suitors has been ever-increasing. With Manchester United having shown an initial interest, the German International has revealed that he is holding talks with Barcelona ahead of a potential move away from the Westfalenstadion.
Despite enduring an apocalyptic first half of a season, Gundogan’s return to form, has ensured Dortmund a spot in Europe. It comes as no surprise therefore, that top clubs all over Europe will be vying to acquire him.
With the departure of Xavi to Qatar at the close of this season, Barcelona are in the market for a long-term replacements. At his current age of 24, and proven prowess as a pass-master, Gundogan fits the bill.
With a proposed price tag of A?20 million, Gundogan would be a solid capture for any top European side. Barcelona however, will have to negate many stumbling blocks to acquire his services. Their ban on officially singing players extends till January 2016. However, they can sign people on a pre-contract before that date.
The problem arises, with Dortmund’s own position on the matter. Chief Executive Hanz Joachim Watzke, admitted,
Gundogan will be leaving Borussia Dortmund this summer. That is a fact. I am very confident we will see various clubs coming in for him. It has not been our intention to see him leave. It was his ambition to move clubs [this summer]. Therefore, we agreed. We will sell him.
With that development, no club would want to sign Gundogan for just six months, before Barca prospectively sign him in 2016. Moreover, Gundogan would not want to spend six months without professional football, in order to join Barca in January
His situation is made all the more precarious, as he has admitted to official contact from the Spanish Champions.
We are holding talks yes, but no decision has been made. I can’t say more than that on this. I’ll leave it [Dortmund future] open as to whether they continue with or without me. BVB are a great team and a really good coach is coming. I dona t know how the team will look next season. The challenge will be to get the great potential of this team back on the pitch. We managed to do that too little during the last year.
His equivocal approach might leave his options open, but he will have to make a very important career decision, in a very short period of time.