Borussia Dortmund look to tackle Roman Bürki dilemma in the winter transfer window

Roman Bürki. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)
Roman Bürki. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images) /

Borussia Dortmund are seeking to find a solution to having Roman Bürki part ways with the club in January, per BILD.

Since the signing of Gregor Kobel this past summer, former first choice keeper Roman Bürki hasn’t been much of a topic at Borussia Dortmund. The Swiss shot stopper has been out of favor under Marco Rose, and it was allegedly made clear to him by the club that coming into the 2021/22 season, he wouldn’t have a large role to play, if at all. Bürki no longer even makes the bench, with Marwin Hitz the preferred number 2 between the sticks.

It is surely an unpleasant situation for all parties involved. For Dortmund, the club has had to permanently freeze out a once crucial player. Signed from SC Freiburg in 2015 as their heir apparent to Roman Weidenfeller, Bürki was expected to shine for the club for years to come. He has gone on to put some very solid performances for the club, making some fantastic, eye catching saves, but his form was hardly ever consistent.

For Bürki, being frozen out of this side must feel disappointing as well. Despite his faltering form at times, he was always a loyal servant of the club. The Swiss international showed heart throughout his time between the sticks, even after being the subject of heavy criticism that made him deactivate his social media accounts. He even quit the Swiss national team to focus on his performances and form for the club.

It can be argued that he wouldn’t really be displacing Yann Sommer as Switzerland’s number 1, but not travelling during the international break gave him time to stay in Dortmund and work on his shortcomings. The 2019/20 season would end up being one of, if not his most fruitful, having helped the club to a second place finish in the Bundesliga, one point behind Bayern Munich.

Bürki and Dortmund now stand at a difficult crossroads. The club wish to move on and focus on building around Gregor Kobel, while Bürki himself doesn’t wish to take a pay cut should he leave the club for pastures new. He is currently under contract until 2023 and is collecting 147,000 euros a week whilst not playing a role on the pitch anymore. According to BILD, these are funds Dortmund would rather spend on wages for a potential winger (Hakim Ziyech has been mentioned) or defensive reinforcements. The club are seemingly also looking to re-negotiate Erling Haaland’s contract so as to keep him for a further season, something that will take substantial financial capital to achieve.

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As of right now it remains unclear as to what club would even be willing to come in for Bürki, but Swiss club FC Basel allegedly made inquiries in the summer. It would of course be in the best interest of both the club and player to find a mutually beneficial solution, particularly considering that Bürki is 31 years old. On one end, he is entering what is generally considered a player’s “twilight years” but due to the position that they occupy, goalkeepers enjoy a certain longevity that could allow Bürki some time to reinvent himself and play an impactful role at another club in Europe. It would be a shame to see both the club and player waste any more time on a partnership that has all but crumbled over the last year.