With the resumption of the German Bundesliga, we will also see the return of Borussia Dortmund, one of the most exciting sides on the planet.
They now stand on the precipice of the ability to consistently challenge Bayern Munich. With a well-rounded squad, a talented manager, and a good blend of experience and youth this is an opportunity they need to take.
Since the winter break, Borussia Dortmund has only lost one match. A switch from a 4-2-3-1 to a 3-4-3 formation has allowed for the side’s best players to flourish. On top of this, January’s acquisitions have been nothing short of a triumph.
With Emre Can shoring up the midfield and Erling Håland adding goals, they now look set to take the title fight to the wire.
However, if Borussia Dortmund wants to continue to flourish, they will have to show some ambition in the market.
The German side has too often failed to adequately replace its departing stars. Robert Lewandowski, Mario Gotze, Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang, Nuri Sahin, the list goes on. With any more of their top stars leaving, catching Bayern could be a pipe dream.
The process appears to be starting again as well. Erling Håland has already been linked with a move, despite only joining the club in January. Meanwhile, Jadon Sancho is being linked to clubs around the world.
These departures with the possible exit of Real Madrid loanee Achraf Hakimi would be disastrous.
This is where the Bundesliga side’s recruitment team has to earn its keep. There is a history of the Germans failing to replace their top talents. For every Marco Reus, there’s a Ciro Immobile and for every Jadon Sancho, there’s an Andre Schurrle.
Achraf Hakimi is one of those who will probably need to be replaced. The lightning-fast wing-back has been a potent weapon down the Dortmund flanks. The 21-year-old has 19 goal contributions as well as providing an outlet for Dortmund under pressure.
Without an adequate replacement for Hakimi, it’d be another step back for Dortmund. However, with a reliable replacement for the Moroccan and keeping the key members of the Dortmund squad, they should be a thorn in the side of Bayern for years to come.