Premier League bosses Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho could reportedly raid Bundesliga challengers Borussia Monchengladbach for Denis Zakaria.
Gunter Netzer and Denis Zakaria would have been a midfield partnership made in heaven.
The conductor and the watercarrier, if you like. But unfortunately for Netzer, a bonafide Borussia Monchegladbach legend and two-time German Footballer of the Year, his playboy peak came decades before Zakaria was pulling the strings at the Bay Arena.
Though Netzer is certainly relishing the chance to watch his young protege strut his stuff from the sidelines. It is thanks largely to the sublime performances of a Swiss international that Gladbach fans are dreaming of Bundesliga glory for the first time since the 1970s, when Netzer himself was scything defences apart with those inch-perfect through balls.
“It an insult to Zakaria (to call him a defensive midfielder)!” Netzer told BILD of an all-action enforcer who has gone from strength to strength under Gladbach coach Marco Rose.
“He is enormously valuable because he plays for the team. Players like him play a part in the success of many teams, they do the dirty work for others.
“I remember Herbert Wimmer or Peter Dietrich in Gladbach in my day. These players are incredibly valuable, I would rather praise them than those who score a goal every now and then.”
With eight goals in the last three seasons, Zakaria is no stranger to putting the ball in the back of the net, although he is at his barnstorming best when powering through the centre of the park like a young Yaya Toure.
According to Express, Zakaria’s dominant displays have caught the eye of Liverpool or Tottenham Hotspur and Gladbach may have no choice but to sell their £40 million talisman if the global health crisis continues to leave Bundesliga clubs embroiled in a financial nightmare.
Though if The Foals have any ambitions of replicating Netzer’s heyday, they will be doing all they can to keep Zakaria around.
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