Borussia Dortmund has been bolstering the squad by making a number of important signings as they attempt to end Bayern Munich’s domination in the 2022/23 Bundesliga.
Die Borussen seems to be one of the most active side in this summer transfer window, not only in Germany but also in Europe. They have signed seven new players for the upcoming season, four of whom are star figures who are expected to be the key men of the team. They are the Ivorian forward, Sebastian Haller, the former Bayern man Niklas Süle, attacking midfielder Karim Adeyemi, and left-back Nico Schlotterbeck.
At the same time, they released have several players, including Belgian international Axel Witsel, Dan Axel Zagadou, and Steffen Tigges, in addition to the sale of Erling Haaland. Dortmund also parted ways with both goalkeepers, Roman Burki and Marwin Hitz. Not to mention that they also dismissed their boss last season, Marco Rose, and re-appointed Edin Terzic, who had quite an impressive spell in the second half of the 2020/21 season as Lucien Favre’s successor. He led Marco Reus and co to reach quarter finals in UCL and won the DFB Pokal.
With such bold reinforcement, many fans believe that they have a real chance to stop Bayern this time. Yet, the real question still remains the same in each and every season, can they make it true eventually or simply lose their consistency again after winter break?
Will Dortmund’s Squad Improvement be enough to Topple Bayern?
Dortmund is still Rebuilding the Team
Dortmund’s hope not only to challenge the reigning champions but to end their decade of domination might yet happen instantly in the upcoming season. Despite Edin Terzic’s brief impressive spell as a caretaker and the club’s big signings, they would require something more than that. The Croatian-born manager would need more time to create one perfect harmony. This is something which would take at least one season. Their most reasonable target is ending the winless run in Der Klassiker and finish second first.
Those new players will fill the voids left by the departures of Haaland, Witsel, and possibly Manuel Akanji. Sebastian Haller is the ideal replacement for Haaland on the attacking side. The former Ajax man is a prolific striker who bagged 34 goals and provided nine assists in all competitions in 2021/22. His experience in Frankfurt should ease his adjustment with Die Borussen’s tactics. Yet, patching him up with the versatile, Karim Adeyemi and the skipper Marco Reus in 4-3-3 formation or 4-3-1-2 could take some time. Not to mention that there will be a competition with Donyell Malen and Youssef Moukoko. Terzic might have to rotate the squad during the crucial stage.
In the midfield, Salih Özcan, who made 31 appearances with Köln last season is touted to be Witsel’s replacement. He would accompany Mahmoud Dahoud and Jude Bellingham as the defensive midfielder. He excels at intercepting the opposition’s attack and initiating the build-up from the second line. Unless he has a hard time in adapting to Terzic’s tactics, Özcan is likely to the first choice in the line-up.
Meanwhile, on the backline, Niklas Süle is bound to be the first choice to accompany Matts Hummels or featuring together with the senior German international plus alongside Nico Schlotterbeck, should Terzic opt the back three in 3-4-2-1 formation. All Süle needs to do is to stay in-form and consistent throughout the season without suffering any serious injuries, if possible. The 26-year old centre back has been prone to injuries in the past three seasons with Bayern.
Bayern is more Dangerous without Lewandowski
Marco Reus might think that Robert Lewandowski’s departure to Barcelona is considered bad for Bundesliga. However, it is not necessarily true. With their new arrivals like Sadio Mane, Ryan Graverbech, Noussair Mazaroui and probably Matthijs de Ligt, Julian Nagelsmann’s men have become more dangerous.
Nagelsmann finally has the squad he wants with more fluid forwards instead of relying on the conventional number 9 as Lewandowski to score. The Polish international did not fit the role but Sadio Mané does, and so is Serge Gnabry. This would make Die Roeten’s attack less predictable, especially considering Nagelsmann’s tendency to switch formations during the game.