Dortmund eyeing in-demand Fiorentina starlet.
Borussia Dortmund could compete with Manchester United for the signing of Fiorentina starlet Adem Ljajic, as they look to boost their attacking options following the departure of Mario Goetze.
The Serbian has been in fine form for La Viola this season, establishing himself as one of the best young players in Serie A. The 21-year-old has scored 11 goals and provided 8 assists playing in a variety of attacking roles behind the main striker, and is very much in the Goetze mould.
Dortmund have been keen to bring in a player of this calibre ever since it was confirmed that rivals Bayern Munich would be signing their star youngster this summer. The German international has left in a £33million move after rising to world class status in the last couple of years with Dortmund.
Jurgen Klopp has seeked to replace him with the likes of Heung-Min Son, Kevin De Bruyne and Christian Eriksen, but looks to have failed in his attempts to land each of these players. Son instead moved from Hamburg to Bayer Leverkusen, De Bruyne looks set to stay at Chelsea next season, and Eriksen is understood to favour a move to Liverpool.
And while Klopp is also wary that other big names could leave Dortmund this summer, he is hoping that the signing of one of the game’s top prospects such as Ljajic can persuade other players that the club can continue to be ambitious next season.
However, they will face big competition from Manchester United, who themselves are desperate for some creative midfield players this summer following the retirement of Paul Scholes and the poor form of the likes of Nani and Ashley Young.
The Red Devils nearly signed Ljajic in his days at Partizan Belgrade, but turned him down, though they have reignited their interest after his impressive development in Serie A with Fiorentina.
Chelsea have also been linked with Ljajic, and the financial potential of two of England’s biggest clubs may prove too much for Dortmund, who have done well to build a strong team with limited funds in recent years.
However, they will be boosted by the big fee received for Goetze, and there is the possibility of more to come, with star striker Robert Lewandowski also keen to leave the club, and attracting interest from the likes of Manchester City and Barcelona, who could pay £20million or more for the Pole.
Fiorentina have proven tough negotiators this summer though, as they have managed to stand firm on another of their in-demand players Stevan Jovetic. The forward has been linked strongly with Arsenal and Juventus, but the two clubs have struggled to meet his club’s asking price.
The Italians will be keen not to lose too key players in one summer, and much of what happens with Ljajic may depend on Jovetic’s future as well.