West Ham United have been heavily linked with a free transfer move for Borussia Dortmund star Mario Gotze.
The midfielder, famed for scoring the winning goal in the 2014 World Cup final, is leaving Dortmund on a free transfer this summer.
West Ham boss David Moyes will be scouting him for the remainder of the Bundesliga season (The Evening Standard).
Hammers chasing Super Mario on a free
Given his pedigree – and despite his injury issues – Gotze’s availability on a free transfer will be the factor attracting West Ham the most.
German footballing legend Michael Rummenigge also suggested that Gotze could join West Ham in the summer, when writing his regular column for SPORTBUZZER.
West Ham will undoubtedly have competition, though, with a host of clubs in Germany also reportedly interested in the 27-year-old playmaker.
But the Hammers will be encouraged after Dortmund director Michael Zorc confirmed Gotze will most likely move abroad (Sky Sports).
Dortmund director confirms Gotze looking to move abroad
“We will part ways with Mario Gotze this summer,” Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc told Sky Sports Germany at the weekend.
“It was a mutual and respectful decision. Mario is a great man. He is a very good player who comes from our own youth system.
“But it is also in his spirit that he is looking for a new job. Maybe abroad.”
Gotze ticks so many boxes for Hammers boss Moyes.
World Cup winner ticks so many boxes for Moyes
Moyes wants to build a new-look West Ham team around young, hungry players with energy.
But he will need some experienced heads too. And Gotze has bags of top level experience but is still the right side of 30.
He possesses speed, technique and dribbling skills and can play as a playmaker as well as a second striker.
The global health crisis is expected to impact West Ham’s transfer budget. And importantly Gotze won’t cost West Ham anything.
While Gotze has been prone to injuries, at 27 he should still have some of his best years ahead of him.