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What next for Gundo?

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With the season almost over, clubs will now start to focus on the transfer window as they look to buy and sell players. And of the players who will likely leave his club in the summer is Ilkay Gundogan. The talented midfielder has been one of the best players for Manchester City and even played a key role in the FA Cup final win by scoring two goals.

However, with his contract set to expire at the end of June, Gundogan has made it clear that at 32 years, he is ready for a new challenge. Gundogan, though, remains one of the best players in his position and will have a large pool of clubs who will be looking to sign him at the first chance they get.

Gundogan has won 13 titles with Manchester City and will bring the winners mentality to any team he signs for. So, what could be the landing spots for Ilkay Gundogan?

Barcelona 

Currently, the strongest indications are linking Gundogan to Barcelona. After almost going bankrupt, the club has managed to use their economic levers to sign top players. This has worked to some extent as the club emerged victorious in La Liga. 

Barcelona have chosen the way of getting back to the top quickly by spending too much money and recovering it later. And under such circumstances, a player of Gundogan’s calibre is a perfect fit for the club.

With the retirement of Sergio Busquets and Pedri and Gavi still learning, the presence of Gundogan, who can still operate at his best for two to three seasons, will be a massive boost to the club.

His experience will also be useful for Pedri and Gavi, who, in two to three years’ time, will start to hit their prime. But, for now, it will also save Barcelona money for a proper defensive midfielder, given that signing Gundogan won’t require any transfer fees.

Arsenal 

Another club Gundogan has been linked with is Arsenal. A Manchester City player going to Arsenal is not new. Just last season, Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko made the switch, and even Mikel Arteta worked under Guardiola before taking the managerial role at the Emirates.

Signing Gundogan would make sense for Arsenal, who, for the most part of the season, were looking to win the Premier League title but bottled it in the end. And a lack of players with experience of winning silverware was one of the reasons for their downfall. A player like Gundogan will not only raise the quality of the squad but will also ensure there is someone who can calm the nervousness down when the team are in a challenging position.

Arsenal were also struck by a lack of squad depth, with several of their players playing the entire season. Gundogan will offer the club options of rotating the team, especially considering Arsenal will also be playing Champions League next season.

Saudi Pro League 

Ever since Cristiano Ronaldo went to Saudi Arabia, every other top player who is reaching the twilight of their career has been linked to the Saudi Pro League. Even Lionel Messi, whose contract expires in the summer, could join the league. And if reports are to be believed, Gundogan has also got a massive offer from an unnamed club to play for them next season.

Undoubtedly, this offer will bring him the most money out of all the options available to him. However, Gundogan still can perform at the best level for several years and would prefer to play in another of the top European leagues.

Borussia Dortmund 

Well, this is an option that is down to Gundogan’s choosing. At Signal Iduna Park, the German became one of the best young midfielders, prompting City to shell out £20 million to sign him. At Dortmund, he was part of the team that won the 2011-12 Bundesliga, and DFB Pokal. In addition, he also reached the final with the team in the 2012-13 Champions League final and also scored in it.

Dortmund experienced the same problems as Arsenal as they failed to win the title despite only needing to win at home in their final game. A player like Gundogan will not only help the squad improve, especially as they look destined to sell Jude Bellingham but will give them the winning mentality they desperately need after seeing Bayern Munich win 11 titles in a row.

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Major League Soccer 

Another league outside of Europe that has emerged as a destination for players is the United States Major League Soccer. And in recent years, the league has significantly raised its standards, developing some of the best talents, such as Christian Pulisic, Alphonso Davies and many more.

And Ilkay Gundogan would be perfect for the league, which would now look for players who are still in their prime. This will help them take the league’s attractiveness to the next level as they aim to be the best league outside Europe.

Saumy Deepak Tripathi
A Bayern Munich fan who is deeply in love with football statistics. Has a soft spot for goalkeepers! (well only he knows why). You’ll find him vibing on 70’s classic songs and spends an abnormal amount of time cooking.

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