A recent report from Patrick Berger of Sport1 has confirmed what many Borussia Dortmund fans have suspected for a while. Youssoufa Moukoko, the young striker once touted as the future face of the club and a prospect on par with Erling Haaland, appears to have fallen out of favor with head coach Edin Terzic, and the young striker’s very future at the club is increasingly uncertain.
Borussia Dortmund are open to loaning or selling Youssoufa Moukoko in the winter. The player does not have a complete future under Edin Terzic as of now.— BVB Newsblog (@bvbnewsblog) September 25, 2023
@berger_pj - 'Die Dortmund-Woche' | @SPORT1#BVB
We’re barely a month into the season and the transfer rumors have already started, even if they aren’t exactly credible. A recent report out of Spain, which was then echoed by Bild, claimed that Jude Bellingham, who has been establishing himself with Real Madrid, has tried to convince his bosses to sign Borussia Dortmund’s Youssoufa Moukoko, of whom manager Carlo Ancelotti also thinks highly.
Whether this transfer rumor actually holds any water, I can’t say. Something tells me that Florentino Perez and Real Madrid’s sporting department don’t make multi-million Euro transfer decisions solely based on recommendations from their players. Even if there’s nothing to it, this does nevertheless reflect the broader trend of what appears to be Moukoko’s diminishing role in Borussia Dortmund’s present and future plans.
As Anders wrote last week, Edin Terzic and the rest of BVB’s management seem to have frozen out Moukoko with the addition of Niclas Füllkrug. Despite collecting a respectable seven goals and three assists in only ~1100 minutes last season, Youssoufa Moukoko has not yet cracked the starting XI this season, with only four appearances as a substitute. In fact, he hasn’t gotten a single start in the Bundesliga since February.
You can argue that Moukoko has many holes in his game, and that he hasn’t demonstrated the type of consistency required to be a starter for Borussia Dortmund. While I would agree that Moukoko isn’t a finished package, I think a lot of the criticisms of him fall flat. Firstly, he’s barely had any opportunity to prove himself, and in the limited minutes that he’s actually played, he has been productive. Furthermore, it’s not as if Füllkrug or Sébastien Haller have been much better, with neither player notching a single goal so far in the league this season.
Maybe Terzic is happy with Niclas Füllkrug and Sébastien Haller, and maybe the front office believes firmly in other young prospects like Julian Rijkhoff and Paris Brunner, but the club has already lost a lot of young talent over the last few years, so it doesn’t seem to wise to give up on the Moukoko project so early in his career. It’s possible he won’t work out, but it’s also possible he’ll turn into a top striker in the world, and I would love for him to be scoring goals at the Westfalenstadion and not the Bernabeu.