Borussia Dortmund are on course to win their first Bundesliga title since 2012, when Jürgen Klopp led them to a league and cup double. Robert Lewandowski, Mats Hümmels and Mario Götze formed the spine of the team. Having either picked them up for very little, or brought them through from the academy, Klopp built a side that truly dominated, albeit for a short period.
We all know what happened next. Bayern Munich, the dominant force in German football, weren’t having it. Using their financial might, they managed to prise Mario Götze away from Dortmund, with the prospect of a sustained period of success too much for the midfielder to turn down.
Götze’s move caused a domino effect, as Lewandowski joined Bayern on a free and Hummels followed suit two years later.
Dortmund have not won a Bundesliga title since, but as Bayern’s squad age and Dortmund continue to refresh their squad, having sold the likes of Ilkay Gündogan to Manchester City and Ousmane Dembélé to Barcelona, using that cash to bring in more young talent such as Jadon Sancho.
As they close in on winning the league title, Dortmund have now decided to no longer sell any players to Bayern, according to Sport Bild. And to avoid losing players on a free transfer, they will choose to sell them before they enter the final year of their contract – as shown by their willingness to let Christian Pulisic sign for Chelsea this January.
Chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke and Sporting Director Michael Zorc came to the agreement when they decided to sell Pulisic when it became clear that the American international did not intent to renew his contract.
So there you have it, Bayern will now have to look further afield than their closest rivals in the transfer market. And they are doing exactly that, as seen in their hot pursuit of Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi.