Athletic Club’s interest in Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mikel Merino is well known by now. After missing out on signing him from Osasuna last summer, the Lions are ready to try to pry him away from the German giants. His lack of playing time in Dortmund has the 20-year-old looking for a move away and Athletic wants to make that wish a reality. The summer transfer window will open soon, but the Basques are already working on a deal.
According to a new report from Javier Ortiz De Lazcano of El Correo, Athletic Club has already made contact with Borussia Dortmund and the two sides are expected to meet to discuss the transfer when the current season comes to an end.
Borussia Dortmund are believed to be open to letting Merino leave, but only for the right price. They know that the midfielder has a lot of potential and will not want to part ways with him unless they get compensated fairly. Right now no one seems to know what they fee will look like, but there have been rumors in Germany suggesting that they would sell Merino for somewhere around €8 million.
The fact that Athletic has already made contact is a good sign that they are ready to make a strong push for the 21-year-old. They should be able to afford whatever asking price is placed on Merino, but that doesn’t guarantee that they will meet it. With Mikel Vesga’s emergence this season they may not feel intense pressure to sign Merino, but those close to the club believe that Athletic want to make him their star signing of the summer. Merino would give the club depth, versatility, and a rising star that could become a force in the lineup for years to come. Negotiations should begin when the season ends and the Lions will push hard to bring Mikel Merino to the San Mames.