Jens Lehmann has tipped Dortmund hotshot Erling Haaland to fill the void and become one of the best football players in the world once Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi retire from the scene.
The former German international was speaking ahead of Dortmund’s clash with Borussia Monchengladbach live on BT Sport 2 this evening.
Lehmann picked out some of the attributes that set Haaland apart from the crowd and believes he is a Ballon d’Or winner in the making.
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Speaking exclusively to RadioTimes.com, Lehmann said: “Haaland is very unique because of his size.
“He has a fantastic attitude, you can see that. He’s very fast in comparison to some other really quick players in the Bundesliga.
“I don’t see a reason why he will not become a top, top world class striker.
“Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, they are leaving the football stage sooner or later, and then guys like Haaland will conquer that area and he will definitely be among the players who will be selected for Ballon d’Or. He will be one of those.”
While UK fans mainly catch snippets of Dortmund in fine fettle with Haaland leading the line alongside England international Jadon Sancho and American prodigy Giovani Reyna, they have struggled in the Bundesliga this term.
They sit fourth in the table, 10 points adrift of Bayern Munich at the top and after sacking manager Lucien Favre in December, fortunes are yet to greatly improve under new coach Edin Terzic.
Lehmann has suggested what could be going wrong at the club. He said: “It’s like last season and the season before, when they produce games and certain results, you can see there’s a lot of talent and stylish football inside that squad.
“Most recently, they’ve produced some bad results and then you ask questions and that is down to inexperience and lack of determination.
“They have changed the coach now, but the new coach did not really make a difference, the worst start for a Dortmund side in years, so we don’t really know.
“When you see them playing, I think they could be more resistant and resilient and more, physically, a little bit fitter.”
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