Jump directly to the content

News Corp is a network of leading companies in the worlds of diversified media, news, education, and information services.

DREAM TEAM

Your Sun

A News UK Company
TOP
all auba the place

Arsenal should think twice before pursuing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: Few leave Borussia Dortmund and excel

Manchester United, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid have all poached BVB stars, but with varying levels of success

Borussia Dortmund has become a haven for a clubs looking to pick off their best talents in recent seasons.

But are they really the best side to buy from?

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is a January target for Arsenal

AFP
18
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is a January target for Arsenal

Arsene Wenger may want to think twice before signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

PA:Press Association
18
Arsene Wenger may want to think twice before signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Arsenal are the latest club close to signing a jewel from the Dortmund crown as they take a look at Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

However, the majority of recent big-name departures from the German giants has seen the levels of the players significantly drop at their new teams.

Manchester United, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich are among those who have added to their squad by poaching players from the Westfalenstadion.


CLAIM YOUR FREE £20 BET Sun Bets have this brilliant offer when you sign up and bet a fiver


But, as this list will show, the form of big-name departures is very rarely maintained once the player leaves Dortmund — and, in many cases, the player ends up returning.

Nuri Sahin to Real Madrid, 2011: £9million

Nuri Sahin struggled to recapture best form while at Real Madrid

Getty Images
18
Nuri Sahin struggled to recapture best form while at Real Madrid

Nuri Sahin is all smiles on return to Borussia Dortmund but is not the same

AP:Associated Press
18
Nuri Sahin is all smiles on return to Borussia Dortmund but is not the same

Sahin is youngest player ever to play and to score in the Bundesliga, and he was talked about as a future star for BVB when he he made his debut in 2005.

But, seduced by the idea of playing under Jose Mourinho, he left Dortmund for the riches of Madrid.

However, he injury problems restricted him to just four La Liga appearances in the 2011-12 and was loaned to Liverpool the following season, where he played just four times.

Sahin has now returned to Dortmund, but is a far cry from the player he had once been tipped to become

Shinji Kagawa to Manchester United, 2012: £14.4m

Shinji Kagawa was a star of Borussia Dortmund side which won double in 2011-12

Reuters
18
Shinji Kagawa was a star of Borussia Dortmund side which won double in 2011-12

A hat-trick against Norwich was one of few bright moments at Manchester United for Shinji Kagawa

Getty Images
18
A hat-trick against Norwich was one of few bright moments at Manchester United for Shinji Kagawa

Was the star of the Dortmund side which won the German double under Jurgen Klopp in 2011-12.

But, having retained his services for a season despite interest from United, they finally had to give in and allow Kagawa the opportunity to the Red Devils that summer.

The Japan international showed glimpses of his quality — most famously with a hat-trick in a 4-0 win over Norwich en route to a Premier League title — it just didn’t work out for him.

After just two seasons in England, he returned to Dortmund, where is still a first team regular.

Mario Gotze to Bayern Munich, 2013: £32.5m

Mario Gotze was billed as Germany's greatest-ever youth product

Getty Images
18
Mario Gotze was billed as Germany’s greatest-ever youth product

At Bayern Munich, Mario Gotze suffered a sharp decline and has failed to recover

Getty
18
At Bayern Munich, Mario Gotze suffered a sharp decline and has failed to recover

This move sent shockwaves across Europe when it was announced, just 36 hours before the German giants were due to meet in the Champions League final, that Bayern had met Gotze’s release clause.

Inevitably, he scored in a win over his former club in the following season, but he struggled to recapture his best form in Munich.

Gotze won the 2011 Golden Boy award and considered the future of German football — but personal issues have plagued him and he soon lost his place in the team.

He returned to Dortmund in 2016, but is only playing regularly again this season.

Robert Lewandowski to Bayern Munich, 2014: free transfer

Robert Lewandowski was sensational at Borussia Dortmund

AFP
18
Robert Lewandowski was sensational at Borussia Dortmund

At Bayern Munich, Robert Lewandowski has grown into one of most lethal No 9s

Getty
18
At Bayern Munich, Robert Lewandowski has grown into one of most lethal No 9s

Pole was expected to leave alongside Gotze but Dortmund refused to let him leave.

Unlike his former — and future — team-mate, he was given a hero’s send-off after final match at the Westfalenstadion.

Lewandowski has been an undoubted success at Bayern, with more goals in fewer appearances for the Bavarians than while in Dortmund.

He famously scored five times in just under nine minutes to beat Wolfsburg 5-1.

Mats Hummels to Bayern Munich, 2016: £31m

Mats Hummels was a stalwart in middle of Borussia Dortmund defence

Corbis
18
Mats Hummels was a stalwart in middle of Borussia Dortmund defence

Mats Hummels has continued his elite performances at Bayern Munich

AFP
18
Mats Hummels has continued his elite performances at Bayern Munich

A return  to where it all began for the former Bayern academy player.

Hummels was considered one of the best defenders on the planet and was a key figure in the Dortmund backline.

Despite the arrival of Marc Bartra, they have never really recovered from his loss.

But, while he is still performing at a high level, he hasn’t necessarily “improved” in Munich.

Ilkay Gundogan to Manchester City, 2017: £24m

Ilkay Gundogan was a vital player under Jurgen Klopp at Borussia Dortmund

Getty
18
Ilkay Gundogan was a vital player under Jurgen Klopp at Borussia Dortmund

Injuries have restricted Ilkay Gundogan since he joined Manchester City

PA:Press Association
18
Injuries have restricted Ilkay Gundogan since he joined Manchester City

A player who was linked with the biggest sides in Europe for years, before he eventually left.

Gundogan was another key member of the Dortmund side which won the double in 2012 and reached the Champions League final 12 months later.

A serious knee injury cut short his debut season in the Premier League, but has not looked out of place since making the move.

Unfair to make a judgement when he hasn’t really had the chance at City.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Manchester United, 2017: £26m

Henrikh Mkhitaryan left Borussia Dortmund as one of best midfielders around

Bongarts - Getty
18
Henrikh Mkhitaryan left Borussia Dortmund as one of best midfielders around

Not much has gone right for Henrikh Mkhitaryan at Manchester United

Getty
18
Not much has gone right for Henrikh Mkhitaryan at Manchester United

The man of the moment.


READ MORE:


Mkhitaryan has struggled for the majority of his time at United, despite becoming one of the best attacking midfielders in Europe while at Dortmund.

Despite his flaws having come into the spotlight in recent months, it’s important to remember he scored in the Europa League final, and showed glimpses of his talent in parts.

Could recreate his sensational partnership with Aubameyang at Arsenal if both join in January.

Ousmane Dembele to Barcelona, 2017: £97m

Ousmane Dembele developed into football star at Borussia Dortmund

Reuters
18
Ousmane Dembele developed into football star at Borussia Dortmund

Ousmane Dembele has spent majority of season on sidelines at Barcelona

Reuters
18
Ousmane Dembele has spent majority of season on sidelines at Barcelona

Dortmund beat the Catalans to his signing from Rennes just 12 months earlier.

And, after continuing to impress in the Bundesliga,  made him a top target — but were not expecting to have to make a move in the immediate future.

However, the departure of Neymar meant they had to act and paid whatever it took to sign Dembele.

Injuries have restricted him to just seven appearances — and 141 minutes — so it’s impossible to make a call at this stage.


PLAY DREAM TEAM WEEKENDER Pick seven players to win £5k!