Twenty-five year old German midfielder İlkay Gündoğan was officially announced as a Manchester City Player today. He is Pep Guardiola’s first signing at the Spanish manager’s new club and has joined the team in a deal worth a little over 20 million pounds, according to reports.
Signed by Jürgen Klopp from 1.FC Nürnberg in May, 2011, Gündoğan initially struggled to replace his predecessor Nuri Sahin, who had left for Real Madrid that summer. However, the BVB midfielder completed the season in good form alongside a cup and a domestic double.
However his best qualities were on full display the following season, as BVB took Europe by storm to reach the Champions League Final in 2012-13. Most notable of his performances was the semi final tie against Real Madrid, when Klopp’s men knocked out the record champions with an aggregate score of 4-3 at the back of an astonishing 4-1 win at home. It was then that he started to get into the radar of Europe’s elite clubs.
After a year absence due to a back injury and missing the 2014 World Cup. Gündoğan eventually got back to his best and enjoyed an incredible campaign in Thomas Tuchel’s first season in Dortmund.
Gündoğan has an amazing quality of setting the tempo and dictating the pace of a game. His passing and dribbling qualities are second to none. And even though it might not be his best quality he also works really hard to recover the ball and has good defensive attributes.
For these reasons it is no surprise that BVB will struggle to replace the all rounded midfielder. There are transfer rumors everyday about who might be the new signing for the black and yellows, but it is something that we’ll just have to wait and see.
Thomas Tuchel may even opt to change his formation and system to ease the burden of having to find a like for like replacement for the new Man City man.
But on a positive note for BVB and their fans, Gündoğan’s departure was not as sudden as Mats Hummels. We have noticed that in the last few games of the season the team were playing without him and so in a way were already preparing for life without their number 8.
And given the track record of Dortmund’s signings, one can not help but get excited about the huge talent that might be joining the Signal Iduna Park to pull off a ‘Julian Weigl’.
For Manchester City, managing to secure such a top-level midfielder with so little amount of money is a great business. Gündoğan is everything that the team needs and how he might linkup with the likes De Bruyne and David Silva will be very intriguing. Only his fitness is a concern. If the medical staff at the Etihad manages to keep him in top shape, the Citizens have found themselves a world beater.
In 25 BvB league matches (22 starts) this past season, scored one goal and had three assists, while creating 82 chances. He passed at a 88% success rate while winning 55% of his tackles. In 152 Bundesliga appearances, he has scored 16 goals
From the Bundesliga Fanatic archives on İlkay Gündoğan
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Brook lives in Ethiopia, and started following the Bundesliga from a very young age. His favourite players then were Thomas Rosicky - the reason he became a Dortmund fan! - and Marcelinho of Hertha Berlin. He likes to watch, read, write and talk about football with special interest in discussing emerging young talents. Follow @brookge