Borussia Dortmund are seemingly resigned to losing Henrikh Mkhitaryan to Manchester United, and have already begun the process of replacing him.
According to a report in the Mirror this evening, the Bundesliga side are looking at Leverkusen forward Karim Bellarabi to fill the void that will soon be left by the Armenian playmaker.
Although they have recently signed French prodigy Ousmane Dembélé, Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel would also like some experience in the role.
That being said, it will take a large degree of effort to prise the 26 year old from their German rivals. They have already seen one bid of around £29m rejected, and while they will probably come back with a higher offer, the current stance from Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Völler is that Bellarabi is not for sale.
Nonetheless, the transfer of Mkhitaryan to Manchester united is edging ever closer. Raphael Honigstein, of such outlets as ESPN, the Guardian and BT Sport, posted an update on Twitter this evening which suggests that deal is nearing completion.
Dortmund have sent an official to Manchester, Mkhitaryan deal nearly done
— Raphael Honigstein (@honigstein) June 26, 2016
The terms of the deal are to be thrashed out in the near future, which suggests that a deal, believed to be in the region of £30m could be finalised before the end of the week. Mino Raiola, the 27 year old’s agent, has been frantically trying to make this transfer happen for the past number of weeks, and it seems that his hard work is set to be rewarded in the coming days.
Earlier reports suggested that a massive breakthrough was made on Saturday to propel this deal forward.
Also due in Manchester this week is another Raiola client, Zlatan Ibrahimović. The 34 year old former Swedish international has just returned home from the European Championships in France, and will meet with Manchester United manager José Mourinho this week to get assurances about his role in the team before he puts pen to paper on the terms he has already agreed to – a one year deal worth over £200,000 per week.