Grading the transfers: Borussia Dortmund
Borussia Dortmund had one of the best transfer windows this summer in spite of losing attacking midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Manchester United, midfield maestro Ilkay Gundogan to Manchester City and centre-half Mats Hummels to Bayern Munich.
The Black and Yellows made eight signings to go with the five departures and still managed to make a profit of about one million Euros. Further, the average age of the new entrants is 22.5 years compared to the average age of the departures which is 25.7 years.
Dortmund management deserves a special mention for planning the transfers in advance as only two of the eight transfers were made after July 1st. This indicates a clear train of thought and coherence between manager Thomas Tuchel and the transfer committee. However, the number of signings means Tuchel had the difficult task of incorporating the new signings into the first team.
So, without further ado, let us take a look at how the new signings have performed so far this season.
#1 Mikel Merino
The first of the summer signings with the deal done in February, Merino was brought in with an eye on the future. He was signed from Spanish club Osasuna for €3.75 million where he made 67 appearances in all. During the same period, he won the 2015 UEFA European Championship with the Spain U-19 team in Greece.
Primarily a midfielder, he played as a centre-half in the pre-season for Dortmund. Merino has so far started in two games this season and both the appearances were in the centre-half position.
So, this could very well imply that Tuchel finds his game to be better suited for defence than in midfield.
Grade – N/A, played too little to assess
(Video Courtesy: WorldOfFootball HD YouTube Channel)