Borussia Dortmund no longer have any intention of selling star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer, according to sporting director Michael Zorc.
The Gabonese striker, who was the Bundesliga’s top scorer last season, had been linked with a move away, however Zorc confirmed on Tuesday that an internal deadline to make any sale has now passed.
Too late to find a replacement
The comments came after the 28-year-old scored twice in the club’s International Champions Cup match in Guangzhou, China against AC Milan. Christian Pulisic also found the net for BVB in the 3-1 victory.
Milan had been one of a number of clubs interested in Aubameyang, who had also been linked with Chinese side Tianjin Quanjian and a number of English clubs, including Chelsea in the past few days.
Speaking after the match though, Zorc backed up reports in Germany by confirming any potential suitors had waiting too long to make their move. “We consider the transfer window closed for him,” he said, as they believed they “have run out of time” to find a replacement in the event of him leaving.
Title challenge on the horizon?
Although a move to China is definitely off the cards as the transfer window has closed there, the big clubs in Europe may not be deterred with several weeks left to make a move before the 1 September deadline.
However if Aubameyang is indeed staying, it will needless to say be a major boost going into the new campaign. He scored 31 goals for Dortmund last season, bringing his overall total in the Bundesliga to 85 goals in four years with the club.
After losing several senior players last season, it will be a major boost for new boss Peter Bosz that only players deemed surplus to requirements, such as Matthias Ginter and Sven Bender, have been let go this summer.
Whilst they might need time to settle under Thomas Tuchel’s successor, Dortmund will therefore be hoping this year that they can close 18-point gap between them and champions Bayern Munich last season.
Quotes via ESPN.