Will Sahin’s return to Dortmund help Manchester United’s pursuit of Lewandowski?

Nuri Sahin Penalty

The midfielder has returned to the club where he made his name after an unsuccessful spell at Liverpool, could he form part of a new Lewandowski-less system from next year, with the Pole linked to Manchester United?

Whether or not Manchester United need Robert Lewandowski considering they already have four top class strikers is a matter for debate, but there seems to be no doubt that they are intent on bringing the Polish player to Old Trafford. Whilst Nuri Sahin’s return to Dortmund would seem unrelated to the future of the German club’s striker, it might presage a switch to a 4-3-3 formation where Lewandowski is not required.

At the moment the Pole generally leads a 4-2-3-1 system where Blaszczykowski, Gotze and Reus play behind the striker, but coach Jurgen Klopp is an admirer of the kind of 4-3-3 system employed by the likes of Barcelona, and could move Reus into a false nine position if Lewandowski leaves in the summer.

Sahin could come into the midfield three, whilst Gotze and Blaszykowski would become part of the front three around Reus. Sahin’s mobility and excellence in building attacks from a deeper position was never in evidence in his spell at Anfield, but if he can recapture the form he previously showed in Dortmund, he would be a perfect addition to this system.

Dortmund seem almost resigned to losing Lewandowski this summer, and Klopp might have seen the opportunity to bring back Sahin as perfectly timed to aid a transition to a new formation. The question now could be where the Polish striker goes in the summer. Manchester United are heavy favourites, but Chelsea, Juventus and Tottenham Hotspur have all demonstrated an interest before. With estimations of his price tag varying from as low as €12 million right up to €30 million, this would need to be established before guessing which clubs would be in contention.

Sahin’s spell at Liverpool was incredibly disappointing, and it would be interesting to know if the player simply wasn’t up to the challenges of the Premier League, or if he could have been a success if he had moved to Arsenal instead. Now back at Dortmund you could see him returning to form, and that might be as part of a 4-3-3 formation that allows Lewandowski to move elsewhere this summer.

images: © wuestenigel, © peterfuchs

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