Youssoufa Moukoko has renewed his contract at Borussia Dortmund. The Black and Yellows announced the deal ahead of their crucial Bundesliga game against Augsburg. The new contract runs until 2026. The 18-year-old striker was set to become a free agent this summer and has been heavily linked with a move away from Dortmund. Those speculations can be put to sleep now.
In terms of salary, the new deal puts Moukoko in the same category as compatriot Karim Adeyemi. Reports from Bild suggested that Moukoko would earn up to $6.6 million per season. Ruhr Nachrichten believes the salary is around $3.3 million plus $3.3 million in bonuses. Transfermarkt, meanwhile, reported that Moukoko would earn around €5.5 million ($5.9 million). Reports in Germany have also suggested that Moukoko has received a signing bonus of $11 million and that his agency received another $5.5 million in addition to the usual 10% of the player’s salary.
“Youssoufa is an extraordinary player that we have developed ourselves and that we see a huge potential for further development,” sporting director Sebastian Kehl said in a statement from the club. “I am happy that we managed to convince Youssoufa before the start of the year. what a second season so important for us that he will have the best prospects at BVB
Indeed, Dortmund had to work hard to keep Moukoko. The striker has been heavily linked with some of Europe’s biggest clubs recently, including Newcastle United, Chelsea and Barcelona. Newcastle have reportedly offered a deal with a signing bonus of around €30 million ($33 million).
“It is no secret that I feel comfortable at BVB,” said Moukoko in a statement from the club. The striker also said there was significant interest from other clubs. “Of course, the interest from other clubs honored me, but ultimately, it is a decision from the heart. The fans have always supported me, and I want to give something back to them and to the club as well.”
Despite offers, Moukoko’s camp always preferred to stay in Dortmund. In fact, the striker’s agency, Wasserman, played the rumor mill route to maximize Moukoko’s contract at the Black and Yellows, using interest from other clubs to ensure the forward would see through his demands.
As Moukoko and his agency tried to maximize the deal in Dortmund the usual noise came from the press. The striker was rumored to be demanding around €8 million ($8.8 million) in the German press.
At one point, Moukoko took to social media to dispute press reports, that he was demanding a significant salary increase. “Don’t believe everything in the newspapers,” Moukoko wrote in an Instagram post in December. “I know this is all part of the football business, but even though I’m still young, I won’t let myself be pressured into making a decision about my future. I will not accept lies about me.”
For the Moukoko camp, this was never about a possible mega-deal with Dortmund or another club. The striker knows that his development will be best served by staying in Dortmund, where he is guaranteed significant playing time. Instead, this involved getting a salary similar to the likes of Adeyemi and Anthony Modeste, who are on a reported €6 million ($6.6 million) deal.
By signing a new contract, Moukoko now earns his current market value. However, Dortmund also won. The striker has been directly involved in 12 goals in 22 games this season and has done a fantastic job filling the void left when Sébastien Haller was diagnosed with testicular cancer earlier this season.
Sporting director Kehl has now signed the club’s biggest talent to a new long-term contract, ensuring Moukoko will not leave on a free transfer. He did all that without damaging the club’s salary structure. It’s the usual win-win situation, especially since the deal was made before Dortmund returned to action after a long winter break.
Manuel Veth is the host of the Bundesliga Gegenpressing podcast and the USA Area Manager at Translation mark. He has also been published in the Guardian, Newsweek, Howler, Pro Soccer USA, and many other outlets. Follow him on Twitter: @ManuelVeth