Mikel Merino did not enjoy his first year at Borussia Dortmund. The midfielder barely saw the field and that really began to frustrate him. Before the season ended he requested for the Germans to allow him to return to Spain, but the firing of Thomas Tuchel may have altered the plans. He will now wait to meet new manager Peter Bosz before determining if he has a place in next year’s squad. Merino’s father, Miguel, spoke with Onda Cero and made it clear that his son doesn’t want to have another year like the previous one.
“There is a lot of talk about the interest of other teams and what will happen. Mikel has experienced a situation that no footballer wants to be in and he doesn’t want another year like the last one – playing only a little and not growing as a footballer. With a new coach comes a new perspective and opportunity. The idea is to return and find out what the club has planned, then to see where he will be next year.”
Like his son, Miguel Merino also played at Osasuna and was actually a teammate of current Athletic manager Cuco Ziganda. The midfielder is currently on international duty with Spain’s U21 team. Once he returns to Germany he will meet with Peter Bosz to discuss his future with the club. If he isn’t guaranteed regular playing time, he will make his exit with Athletic Club being his heavily preferred destination.
According to sources close to the situation, Athletic is already close to an agreement with Merino over personal terms and have promised him the chance to fight for a starting role in the years to come. The Lions are also said to have reached advanced negotiations with BVB and will be given the green light to finalize the transfer if Bosz deems Merino unnecessary for next year’s squad. The 20-year-old wants to play regular minutes and continue growing as a footballer and he believes that the San Mames is the best place for that to happen.