The Hard Tackle chalks down three players who could turn out to be a viable transfer target for Borussia Dortmund this summer.
The Coronavirus pandemic has inflicted massive damage in the world of football. Bundesliga, in particular, have had to suspend all its footballing activities, with Germany being one of the worst-hit countries.
Borussia Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has admitted that he is unsure about his club’s transfer activity due to the ongoing crisis. However, it won’t be surprising to see the Black and Yellows bring in a host of players in the summer. They are already in pole position to sign Jude Bellingham from Birmingham City.
It is not the first time Dortmund have looked towards the English market in recent years, notably signing Jadon Sancho from Manchester City. And here, at the Hard Tackle, we will talk about three Premier League players who could be a realistic target for the German giants this summer.
Joao Cancelo – Manchester City
Achraf Hakimi’s return to Santiago Bernabeu, following the end of his two-year loan spell, will serve as a massive blow for Lucien Favre. The Moroccan international is also courted by Chelsea. Either way, he is unlikely to continue his career at Dortmund, thus creating a huge void in the right-back department.
Die Schwarzgelben have been linked with a move for PSG star Thomas Meunier. However, it’s highly doubtful whether the Belgian will properly be able to replace Hakimi. Hence, Dortmund should turn their attention towards Joao Cancelo.
The Portuguese international has struggled due to lack of game-time following his move to Manchester City. And he could potentially fancy a move away from Etihad Stadium.
Cancelo is a technically astute right-back, who can fit into Favre’s system quite efficiently. His ability to rotate possession and move up the final third could help him fill in the shoes of Hakimi.
At the same time, however, Cancelo is set to cost a fortune, and it would take some financial commitment for Dortmund to get hold of this individual.
Bukayo Saka – Arsenal
Borussia Dortmund should prioritise a move for Bukayo Saka this summer. The Arsenal youngster has emerged as one of the rising stars in the Premier League this season and for multiple reasons.
Saka has shown immense promise, and his maturity is well beyond his years. A left-winger by trade, the 18-year-old has slotted in as a left-back this season, helping Mikel Arteta deal with an injury crisis that saw both Kieran Tierney and Sead Kolasinac miss a chunk of the campaign.
Saka is a nimble footballer, who relies on his footwork and movement to nestle through tight spaces. He can play quick one-twos with teammates and even create a passing triangle out wide – making the transition significantly easier.
Borussia Dortmund do lack options at left-back, with Marcel Schmelzer nearing the end of his career while Nico Schulz has failed miserably, leaving Raphael Guerreiro as the only viable option.
Speaking of the Portuguese international, he is an extremely injury prone individual. The addition of Saka, therefore, could provide Favre with additional options on the left flank. The youngster’s contract at Arsenal expires in 2021, and it could be an ideal time for Dortmund to convince him to move to Bundesliga.
Willy Boly – Wolverhampton Wanderers
Borussia Dortmund desperately need a centre-back this summer. Manuel Akanji hasn’t been able to make the desired impact while Lukasz Piszczek’s lack of pace could make him a liability next season. Meanwhile, youngster Leonardo Balerdi is yet to impress Favre.
Dan-Axel Zagadou, too, has made numerous errors throughout the course of the campaign despite being preferred ahead of Akanji since the turn of the year. That leaves with Mats Hummels as the only reliable option. But even then, the German is often criticised for his lack of pace. And that’s where Dortmund could look towards Willy Boly.
The Wolverhampton Wanderers star has emerged as one of the best performing defenders in the Premier League since the club’s promotion to the top flight. His commitment at the back, coupled with his physical and aerial prowess has seen him create a formidable defensive combination with Conor Coady.
Boly could be an ideal partner to Hummels and Zagadou in Dortmund’s three-man backline. His robust style of play should complement Hummels’ more technical approach, thus adding another dimension to the defensive unit.