Germany's main sporting tabloid reports that Borussia Möchengladbach and Fortuna Düsseldorf are close to finalizing a €2.5 million deal for the summer transfer of Japanese midfielder Ao Tanaka.
|Photo: 首相官邸ホームページ, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0
The rumor - reported on by Germany's "Sport Bild" tabloid would make sense for a number of reasons. First and foremost, Gladbach must be proactive in seeking additional midfield assistance ahead of the projected losses of Florian Neuhaus and Manu Koné over the summer. Secondly, the foals have the extra cash to spend as one of only three top-tier sides to reach the DFB quarterfinals (and obtain the extra bonus payments) this spring. Düsseldorf - having even reached the cup semis - may wish to pocket still more cash.
Lastly, Tanaka may find it favorable to join fellow Japanese international Ko Itakura in North-Rhine Westphalia. Gladbach also recently promoted Japanese attacking prospect Shio Fukuda to the senior time. The 19-year-old Samurai youth international has already garnered two relief appearances off BMG trainer Gerardo Seoane's bench. Gladbach themselves will surely look for any selling point to keep Itakura, who is heavily linked with an exit this summer.