Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke has fanned the flames over a move for former striker Robert Lewandowski by admitting he would be prepared to spend £90million to bring him back from Bayern Munich.
Lewandowski left Dortmund for Bayern in acrimonious circumstances in 2014, where he then went on to quickly become an integral part of the Allianz Arena club’s side.
But this has not stopped Dortmund chief Watzke expressing an interest in re-signing the Polish forward this summer if the possibility arises.
Robert knows the business, the league, even the club and we know he would work right away,’ he told Bild.
‘Only a handful of players in the world can give you this security. For such a player, I would be willing to pay even £90m.’
Such a move would comfortably surpass the current record sum of £24m paid by Dortmund to Wolfsburg for Andre Schurrle back in 2015.
However, Watzke believes the club now have the economic means to make such a deal work.
‘The players in the top segment no longer cost £50m, but rather £100m,’ he added.
‘We could handle that, too, if we absolutely want to have a player and are a thousand per cent convinced.
‘But to be honest, I much prefer to create such players myself. BVB has always been strongest when developing its stars.’
Lewandowski changed agents to Israeli deal-maker Pini Zahavi in February amid interest from Real Madrid.
And in May, Zahavi revealed that his client was plotting a move away from Bayern while also calling him the ‘best striker in the world’.
‘Robert feels he needs a change and a new challenge in his career. The managers of Bayern know about it,’ he told Bild.
‘Robert’s motives are not money or a specific club as almost all the top clubs would like to have the best striker in the world in their ranks.
‘Every one of the Bayern leadership had great careers themselves. They should understand his situation.’
The German champions, for their part, have repeatedly insisted that their striker is not for sale at any price – and for good reason.
Lewandowski has scored 151 goals in 195 games for Bayern to date, helping the club to four successive Bundesliga titles.
He is contracted to Bayern until the summer of 2021.