Borussia Dortmund chairman Hans-Joachim Watzke says it would be great for the Bundesliga if Leroy Sane were to join Bayern Munich, despite his team missing out to the seven-times champions in this season’s title race.
Dortmund narrowly lost out to Bayern in the title run-in after topping the table for much of the campaign.
Lucien Favre’s team led the way until early April, before a 5-0 hammering at the Allianz Arena against their great rivals cost them the initiative and dealt a setback from which they were unable to recover.
And despite watching the Bavarians snatch a seventh straight title from under his team’s nose, Watzke says he would be delighted to see Germany international Sane return home – even if it means strengthening Dortmund’s biggest rival.
"I think it would be great if Bayern brings Leroy Sane back as a German national player, because that would further increase the appeal of the league,” the Dortmund chief told Bild.
“I am the first to congratulate them [on their title win].
"We want to become champions, but Bayern is like Mount Everest.
“You can try to defeat it once - and we want that too. I think even Germany needs that again soon.”
Watzke continues to face questions regarding the future of winger Jadon Sancho, with the England international the subject of ongoing speculation that he will join one of Europe’s top clubs in the summer.
But the Dortmund chief insisted that, whilst the 19-year-old’s long-term future likely lies elsewhere, he will still be at Signal Igunda Park next season.
"It's safe to assume that Jadon will not be playing at BVB for ten more years, but we have clear agreements about the present,” said Watzke. “Jadon is not on the market and will be playing at Borussia Dortmund next season.”
Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic has also been linked with a move, with Dortmund touted as a likely destination for the Croatia international.
"We do not have to talk about Mandzukic,” said Watzke. “He's currently a Juventus player, he plays in Turin, and as I know Mario Mandzukic, he's a striker so ambitious he always wants to play.”