With Mario Gotze tipped to leave Bayern Munich for the Premier League this summer, we assess which club could be the playmaker’s next destination.
It wasn’t long ago that Gotze was touted as Germany’s answer to Leo Messi, and tipped to rise to the top of the game alongside Brazilian sensation Neymar.
But following three disappointing seasons at Bayern Munich, the 23-year-old has faded into relative obscurity. Rumours in Germany suggest that Pep Guardiola was never in favour of signing the Dortmund star, and that the move was more motivated by Bayern’s desire to disrupt their biggest rivals.
Meanwhile, Neymar has risen to be a domestic and international star, and is now ranked amongst the most well paid athletes on the planet.
While the Euros will dominate much of the headlines this summer, the transfer window will be as tumultuous as ever. Antonio Conte and Jurgen Klopp will have their first opportunity to bring in their own players, and the rumours around Mancvhester United suggest they may have Jose Mourinho calling the shots this summer, instead of Louis van Gaal.
With this in mind, which team would be best off going for Gotze, who will almost certainly make England his next stop?
Paper talk is suggesting an unlikely reunion with Klopp, taking him to Anfield. The enigmatic coach has signalled his disappointment with the centre forward options at Liverpool, opting for Roberto Firmino to play as a false 9 on numerous occasions, a role Gotze is not unfamiliar with.
Given the choice though, would Klopp rather bring in another creative number 10 over his choice of number 9, or indeed some defensive options?
The second club that are consistently linked to Gotze are Arsenal, with Arsene Wenger reportedly a huge fan of the playmaker. With Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain tipped to leave the club, Jack Wilshere seemingly forever injured and Tomas Rosicky not getting any younger, a player of Gotze’s age and calibre would be a welcome addition, and if he could replicate his BVB form he would comfortably rival Alexis as their best attacking midfielder.
Given the arrival of Guardiola and City’s wealth of attacking midfield options we can probably rule them out, and Chelsea too seem like an unlikely destination, considering the style of play Conte is likely to install.
This just leaves Manchester United. Currently LVG insists on playing one of the world’s most formidable number 10s on the wing, and the number 10 spot seems to be reserved for Depay, Rooney and Fellaini. A situation that looks unlikely to change if the Dutchman remains at the club.
If Mourinho takes charge a creative number 10 would likely be low on his priorities list, despite the protestations of a change in style.
It seems like Liverpool or Arsenal would be the best option for Gotze, and the Premier League will undoubtedly benefit from a player of his ability, even if he has career has stalled of late.