Boost for Liverpool & Man United in race to sign world-class defender?

Image for Boost for Liverpool & Man United in race to sign world-class defender?

Centre-Back - Mats Hummels

Centre-back Mats Hummels was benched for Borussia Dortmund’s 4-1 win over Stuttgart on Sunday, following reports tipping him to hand in a transfer request at Westfalenstadion. 

The 26-year-old is widely regarded as one of the top centre-halves in world football, having claimed consecutive Bundesliga titles with the Black-Yellows and lifted the World Cup with Germany in summer 2014.

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has pursued him relentlessly since taking the Old Trafford helm two summers ago, whilst Liverpool were linked last week in an apparent Jurgen Klopp double-raid on his former club that would also see Marco Reus move to Merseyside.

Hummels was rested by manager Thomas Tuchel for a 4-1 thumping over Stuttgart this weekend that sustained Dortmund’s position of second in the Bundesliga table, bringing him on for the final 10 minutes once the result was already beyond doubt.

Initially, that may not seem so unusual. But it was the first time Hummels has been used as a substitute in over a year – which shows how important a figure is to the Dortmund starting Xi – and followed reports of an impending transfer request at Westfalenstadion.

The rumours are somewhat speculative, but in conjunction with Sunday’s benching suggest that the Dortmund captain’s reported rift with his manager is becoming a bigger issue – curiously enough as his contract edges upon its final 18 months.

Hummels, however, has publicly denied any problems with Tuchel, whilst hitting back at what he’d previously described on Twitter as ‘overblown’ criticism.

As quoted by ESPN, he said after Dortmund’s 4-1 win; “We don’t have any problem with each other. We can openly and constructively discuss and swap ideas, and we’ll continue to do so. The criticism has developed its own dynamics. Bad things sell better than positive reports. When there is the chance to slap on someone, in my case the chance is embraced.”

Also in the news:

Unhappy Real Madrid star could join Everton or Liverpool in shock January deal

PL rivals to stop Chelsea and Man United swoops by doubling £60m star’s wages

Double CL-winner wants Man United move despite long-term City interest

Everton and Liverpool eyeing £20m-rated England international

Share this article