Manchester United need to bring in a top-class midfielder if they are to finish in the top four of the Premier League this season - and many big names have been linked with a switch to Old Trafford over the past few months.
One of the players in question is Borussia Dortmund midfield maestro Ilkay Gundogan. The player himself has admitted in the past that United are his ‘dream club’.
Speaking at the start of this month, Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke confessed he was unsure whether he would be staying at Signal Iduna Park:
"It is our absolute desire that besides Robert Lewandowski no other regular player leaves the club. Only in the case of Ilkay Gundogan, we do not yet know how it will turn out. We would love to extend with him."
But yesterday it looked as though they had been beaten to the punch by Real Madrid. The players agent and father confirmed that Real had been in touch over a potential transfer.
Here is what Irfan Gundogan has had to say about his son’s future:
“The interest from Madrid is intense. They want to bid for my son.”
Not good news as far as United are concerned then - because as we know, what Real Madrid want they usually get.
However Borussia Dortmund seem very perplexed and surprised by these claims. Watzke, who must be getting fed up of constantly denying his players are leaving the club, has responded to the Real Madrid rumours candidly in the German press, stating:
"If we believe everything that has been in the Spanish media, who supposedly leaves us, we would have to worry that we will get a team together. We do not know of Ilkay, nor from his father that he wants to leave us."
Good news for United then as no deal with Real looks done but his future with Dortmund continues to look ropey at best … perhaps a January move could shake things up.
image: © peterfuchs