Even if the news didn’t come as a surprise, it was still a little strange to hear Michael Zorc confirm on Saturday that Borussia Dortmund and Mario Götze would be parting company at the end of the season. With his future away from the Signal Iduna Park, where will be the next port of call for the World Cup winner?
Before Saturday’s 2-0 away win at VfL Wolfsburg BVB’s sporting director Michael Zorc calmly told Sky Deutschland: “I have had a very good conversation with Mario in the past few days. We have agreed that we will not continue our cooperation after the season.
“I think that is in the best interests of both parties. Mario is a really good boy and I think this season he will still be important to us.”
So, for the second time, Götze will be leaving the Schwarzgelben. The 27-year-old product of the BVB youth system has not really hit the heady heights of his first spell at the club after being brought back from Bayern Munich in 2016.
The writing was on the wall earlier this week when trainer Lucien Favre stated that in was unfortunate that Götze didn’t fit into the system he wanted to play. “Right now, we are playing 3-4-3,” Favre told the media. “So, I have been talking to Mario, and unfortunately this is not the right system for him. You must say the truth about this.”
A new beginning
Mario Götze’s future then lies somewhere other than the Ruhr, but his likely destination remains unclear. A move abroad would seem highly probable. Italy’s Serie A has been touted as a potential draw.
Fellow German World Cup winner Lothar Matthaus is one, who believes Serie A would suit the player. “Today, his way of playing football is no longer in demand” Matthaus wrote in his recent column for Sky. “Above all, he lacks speed to keep up with the football that Dortmund and many other top clubs practice.
“It is quite possible that Italy would be a suitable league for him. At least the game is not played so quickly there and that would benefit him. He has no lack of will. I have seen him play a few times and one can certainly not accuse him of listlessness or lack of ambition.
“But he is also not the player you want to see running 30 metres back to win balls deep in his own half. Götze is not a football worker. If he has to do such tasks, I’m almost sorry.”
Reports have linked Götze with Lazio, Roma, and Milan recently, but there is a stumbling block regarding his yearly salary. At Dortmund he earns €10 million per year- a figure the Italians wouldn’t be able to match.
Ligue 1 side Nice were also linked but have moved swiftly to deny the rumours. “I’ve read this, and I don’t know where it comes from,” boss Julien Fournier said. “Mario Götze is certainly an interesting player. But we’ve never been in contact with him or his representatives at any time. And we have never had the ambition to bring him here.”
Jürgen Klopp and Liverpool will be touted by some as an option, but this is down to sentiment rather than reality. Götze had the chance to move to Anfield in 2016 and has probably missed that boat. It is very difficult to now picture where and how he would fit into the Reds’ squad.
Could MLS be a lure for Götze? LA Galaxy for example has a reputation for attracting ‘big-name’ European stars to the West Coast and the slower, less intense American game could suit him down to the ground.
I’m going to throw a curve ball into the equation now……Hertha Berlin. With their investor Lars Windhorst throwing money at the club in an effort to take the capital club to the next echelon, could a big-money, headline-grabbing move for Götze be on the cards.
Stranger things have happened.