Gotze, Lewandowski and Dembele - Dortmund talent drain continues

Ousmane Dembele's decision to leave for Barcelona continues a frustrating trend for Borussia Dortmund.

Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski during their time at Borussia Dortmund.   -  Bongarts

Since completing back-to-back Bundesliga titles under Jurgen Klopp in 2011-12, Borussia Dortmund has become a go-to source of star talent for some of Europe's heavyweight clubs.

Ousmane Dembele is set to become the latest big-name departure from Signal Iduna Park after he completed a €105million move to Barcelona.

The only positive for BVB is it has not seen him leave for domestic rival Bayern Munich, who has frequently returned to raid its ranks in recent years.

Here, we look at who Dortmund have lost since its heady days under Klopp, when it departed and how it coped.


Mario Gotze - cropped

Mario Gotze won widespread acclaim for his role in Dortmund's run to an all-German Champions League final, but the silky play-maker came in for criticism when he agreed a move to rival Bayern on the eve of a semifinal clash with Real Madrid.

An injured Gotze eventually missed the final against his future employer, with whom he spent three under-whelming seasons before returning to his boyhood club at the start of last season. 


Robert Lewandowski celebrates a goal for Bayern Munich against Bayer Leverkusen   -  Bongarts


Dortmund fans suffered more pain just 12 months after Gotze's controversial switch when another celebrated hero in Robert Lewandowski followed his path to the Allianz Arena, the fact it was a free transfer stinging all the more.

Lewandowski has remained one of the most prolific strikers in Europe and won three Bundesliga titles in Munich, but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang stepped up to fill the goal-scoring void for BVB.


Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels has reflected on the side's poor pre-season form.   -  Bongarts


Klopp left Dortmund at the conclusion of a woeful 2014-15 campaign and there was another damaging exodus the following year. Commanding central-defender Mats Hummels became the latest BVB favourite to leave for Bayern, while Henrikh Mkhitaryan was snapped up by Manchester United and metronomic midfielder Ilkay Gundogan left for Manchester City.

Dembele proved a useful addition and registered 10 goals and 20 assists in 49 appearances in all competitions, while Sokratis Papastathopoulos established himself as Dortmund's new leader at the back.

The arrivals of Gotze and Andre Schurrle have yet to pay dividends, though, with the former plagued by injury.


France's Ousmane Dembele   -  Getty Images


Dembele's decision to chase a high-profile move to Barcelona will undoubtedly invoke familiar memories for Dortmund supporters, but the Frenchman's defection comes against a backdrop of progress; star striker Aubameyang shunned interest from China to stay at Signal Iduna Park, Gotze has returned to full fitness and Christian Pulisic looks ready for greater first-team involvement.

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