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Wenger expects tough battle for targets


BVB seeking answers from Gundogan

Borussia Dortmund have urged Ilkay Gundogan to make up his mind about his future as speculation continues to link the Germany midfielder with a move away from the Westfalenstadion.

Ilkay Gundogan has been strongly linked with Real Madrid.
Ilkay Gundogan has been strongly linked with Real Madrid.

Uersfeld: End of an era?
Buczko: BVB's window plans

Gundogan -- who is rumoured to be interesting Real Madrid -- is currently under contract until the summer of 2015, but he has put talks over an extension on hold during the first half of the season as he has been sidelined with a back injury.

On Sunday, he took part in his club’s first training session of the year, and Borussia now want to be informed of his intentions.

Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has told kicker that, while “not fond of ultimatums,” the “other party needs to understand” that the club need clarity, adding: “Our top priority is to find out if there is a willingness to prolong the contract.”

The club's CEO, Aki Watzke, has also called for a “timely decision” from Gundogan.

Should Gundogan signal that he does not want to extend his deal, Borussia are set to cash in on the 23-year-old as they would be fearful of allowing the player to enter the final 12 months of his contract, after seeing Robert Lewandowski agree to join Bayern Munich on a free transfer.

Meanwhile, Kevin Grosskreutz has not given up on his dream of playing at the 2014 World Cup.

Grosskreutz, 25, impressed in the right-back position during the first half of the season and could be an option for Joachim Loew, should the Germany coach decide to move captain Philipp Lahm into a holding midfield role.

“Only through performances with my club can I put myself forward for the national team -- and that is exactly what I plan to do in the second half of the season,” Grosskreutz, who has made three appearances for Germany since 2010, told kicker. “I would be delighted if I was part of the squad for Brazil.”


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