Borussia Dortmund’s current situation is anything but ideal ahead of their quarterfinal against Manchester City this Tuesday evening.
The downward trend domestically is expected to have a significant effect on the club’s future. Rumors talk about the likely departure of two of the Black and Yellows’ stars and a major upheaval.
Financial losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the likely failure to qualify for next season’s Champions League campaign might force the 2012 German champion to sell off some of its biggest assets, like Erling Haaland and Jadon Sancho.
The club’s policy of attracting talented young players seems under threat.
A 75-million-euro loss due to games being played behind closed doors will mount up to over 100 million if they do actually miss out on Champions League qualification. With seven games to play, they are seven points adrift of a ticket for Europe’s top club competition.
Providing the opportunity to perform on the highest level has been Dortmund’s bargaining chip when competing with Europe’s leading sides in the race for promising talents.
For the first time since 2015, Dortmund’s strategy to act as a stepping-stone for potential superstars seems to be failing.
Far more than the duel against the Premier League leaders City, the future is Dortmund’s main cause for concern.
The unrest caused by the entourage of goal-machine Haaland seems to be increasing the club’s malaise.
The Norwegian international demands regular participation in the Champions League. His agent Mino Raiola’s recent promotion tour has caused doubts about the club’s general approach.
Critics say Haaland’s management is following in the footsteps of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Ousmane Dembele in blackmailing the club. They are touting a move to a top club despite their client having a valid contract until 2024.
Aubameyang and Dembele provoked their departure by going on strike. Dortmund was forced to capitulate. Haaland seems in a better position despite an exit clause worth up to 100 million euros that would enable him to leave in the summer of 2023.
Club officials claim they want to keep Haaland whatever happens but seem trapped in an uncomfortable situation. An unhappy Haaland would be of no use.
Curiously, Dortmund’s next opponents City are said to be targeting Haaland.
CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke said the club is going to discuss possible offers with Sancho and Haaland. “We want them to feel comfortable playing for us,” he said, adding there is no alternative plan if they might want to leave.
Unsolved issues such as a goalkeeper question seem a big problem as well as the team’s reported lack of mentality on their way to meet the club’s goals.
The sacking of head coach Lucien Favre in December and the appointment of Edin Terzic as caretaker has not turned fortunes around. Marco Rose (currently at Moenchengladbach) has a tough task ahead him restructuring the squad when he takes charge in summer.