It's been rumored for a while now that Dortmund were interested in 18-year-old Rennes forward Ousmane Dembele, but those rumors aren't just rumors anymore.
According to RuhrNachrichten, BVB are leading the race to sign Dembele from the Ligue 1 side. The young Frenchman is under contract until 2018, but there had been rumors of a €5 million release clause. Even if those rumors are not true, it shouldn't cost more than €12 million to pry him from Rennes.
This season has been a breakout one for Dembele. In 22 games in Ligue 1 he's tallied 12 goals and five assists for a Rennes team that is in seventh place, just three points off a Europa League spot. He's a versatile forward who can play on the left or right wing. Dembele has also appeared for France at the U21, U19, U18, and U17 levels.
Ligue 1 won't let us embed it, but checkout the highlights of Rennes' recent 4-1 victory over Nantes in the Derby de la Bretagne. Dembele scored his first career hat trick in the match. He's only got one defender to beat, but the last goal is smoothly slotted home by the French youngster.
Dembele has been linked all around Europe during this season in which he has announced himself to the world. Bayern, Tottenham, and Manchester United have all been rumored at some point to be interested in his services.
Ousmane's agent, Badou Sambague, told Foot Mercato yesterday that his client had no agreement with Dortmund and was focusing on the end of the season. It seems a bit odd to me that BVB were the only club Sambague mentioned, considering how many Dembele has been linked to lately. Why didn't he also dismiss the links to Bayern or to Spurs?
And before you click away, you need to see this goal he scored against Marseille last month.
Yes, Marseille are pretty bad this year, but if those moves on the ball don't excite you than you might actually be a Bayern fan. It's not hard to see why Rennes' advisor and legend Mikael Silvestre has compared Dembele to a young Cristiano Ronaldo.
This kid looks like the real deal. Hopefully we get an official announcement from Dortmund on the signing in the near future.