Leonardo Balerdi leaves Borussia Dortmund to join Olympique Marseille on loan

Leonardo Balerdi of Borussia Dortmund (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
Leonardo Balerdi of Borussia Dortmund (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images) /

Borussia Dortmund have announced that Leonardo Balerdi has joined Olympique Marseille on a season long loan deal.

Balerdi traveled to Marseille to have his medical exam earlier today, before signing for the French side on an initial one year loan deal. Marseille have a purchase option to make the signing permanent at the end of the season.

Announcing Balerdi’s departure, Michael Zorc told Borussia Dortmund’s official website:

"“Balerdi approached us with a wish to make the change. He hopes to get more playing time in Marseille. We thank him for his effort and wish him the maximum success for his future.”"

Balerdi leaves Borussia Dortmund just 18 months after his arrival from Boca Juniors for 15 million euros. The Argentine centre back failed to make much of an impression on Lucien Favre, and was limited to just eight appearances, with his only start coming in the 4-0 loss to Hoffenheim on the final day of last season. He only spent a total of 135 minutes on the pitch over the course of his Dortmund career.

The 21 year old will now be hoping for a fresh start and more playing time with Olympique Marseille.

It was reported earlier that Borussia Dortmund do not want there to be a purchase option in any loan deal. But Marseille have confirmed that they have the option to sign him permanently at the end of the season. Rumours in France claimed earlier today that the two sides have agreed on a purchase option of 14 million euros.

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As reported previously, Borussia Dortmund will not be signing anyone to replace the departing Balerdi. In addition to Mats Hummels, Dan Axel Zagadou and Manuel Akanji, the Black and Yellows can also count on Lukasz Piszczek, Emre Can and Thomas Meunier to play at centre back.