Borussia Dortmund remain staunch in their plans to retain the services of Marco Reus, insisting Shinji Kagawa's arrival does not signal an end to his time with the club.
Chief Executive Hans-Joachim Watzke believes Reus is invested in Jurgen Klopp's long-term project, hinting that Kagawa's return, if anything, sets up a longer commitment between club and player, per ESPN FC.
"I am convinced that Marco sees what we are building here," Watzke says. "Marco and Shinji can perfectly play together. We've now got a great depth in midfield, a magnificent mixture of dynamic ball control, and experience."
This will be the first time the playmaking pair will feature in the same side. Reus arrived from Borussia Monchengladbach two years ago, the same summer transfer window that saw Kagawa depart for Manchester United.
Reus is poised to attract widespread attention in 2015, and the Daily Mail's Martin Domin reports that Arsenal are among those sides eyeing the £20 million release clause that will activate next summer.
Domin hints that the temptation of such a move has so far kept the player from penning a new deal with Dortmund:
Wenger is a huge fan of Reus and looked into the prospect of bringing him to the Emirates Stadium this summer. However, Arsenal intend to activate a £20million buy-out clause in the Germany international's which is due to kick-in during next summer's transfer window.
Of course, Arsenal will not be the only side in the running for Reus, with Europe's elite clubs likely to register their interest in the player. Dortmund want to tie Reus down to a new deal that would see the clause withdrawn from his contract. But the speedy forward, who can play anywhere across the attacking third, has so far refused to sign.
The attacker's mercurial standards at the Westfalenstadion have drawn a host of suitors in the past 18 months and more, but Dortmund have managed to rebuff that interest so far.
However, it will become that much more difficult to do so when Reus has a set-in-stone release fee attached to his name.
It's only been a matter of weeks since Reus returned to fitness from the ankle injury that prevented him from taking part in Germany's 2014 World Cup triumph.
However, he isn't allowing a restless summer to interrupt his progress, and the official Bundesliga Twitter account agrees he was a potent force for his side last weekend:
Bundesliga English @Bundesliga_EN
And here's why @BVB's Marco Reus was http://t.co/Od32YP3sh5's Player of the Week for MD2 http://t.co/DvPQ18SGT29/3/2014, 4:05:04 AM
Since returning to Dortmund after leaving as a teenager, Reus has emerged as one of the club's most important figures, especially with Robert Lewandowski now at rivals Bayern Munich.
OptaJoe shows what a threat he poses in attack as Klopp leads another charge on Der FCB's domestic dominance:
31 - Since the start of 2013-14, Marco Reus has been involved in the most goals in the German Bundesliga (Scored 17, assisted 14). Coveted.9/1/2014, 2:41:59 PM
No matter how hard they've tried, Dortmund have been forced to watch several talismanic players leave in recent years. Nuri Sahin was tempted by Real Madrid before Mario Gotze and Lewandowski both jumped ship for the Allianz Arena.
In their wake, Reus is the attacking mantle around whom Klopp's line-up has been structured, and the promise of adding Kagawa back into that formula gives a new promise for success.
Clubs will inevitably lurk around the German sensation, particularly with the clock ticking down until that 2015 stipulation kicks into effect.
However, Dortmund have proved stubborn to extract talent from in the past, so the likes of Arsenal still have an almighty task on their hands.
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