Borussia Dortmund winger Kevin Grosskreutz has gone to Istanbul and will train with Galatasaray, despite the fact he is technically still a Dortmund player and cannot join the Turkish club until the January transfer window.
The failed transfer of David de Gea to Real Madrid due to late documents gained much publicity, but Grosskreutz had the same thing happen, as Galatasaray reportedly submitted the transfer documents to FIFA 48 seconds past the deadline. FIFA then declined a request for an exemption.
Galatasaray announced Grosskreutz’s signing in a tweet that has not been deleted, and for all intents and purposes he is a Galatasaray player, but cannot play until he officially changes teams.
The 27-year-old German had spent spent six seasons with Dortmund, making 236 appearances across all competitions, scoring 27 goals and assisting 37 more. Thanks to preseason injuries and a public falling out with new Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel, Grosskreutz was sent to train and play with Dortmund’s reserve squad.
The situation is obviously a delicate one, but Dortmund confirmed both sides still wish to complete the transfer “at the next available opportunity and under the already agreed conditions.” The details of the transfer were not disclosed by either side, but reports claim Grosskreutz was sold in a $7.4 million deal.
It’s likely that Galatasaray will keep strict rules about what Grosskreutz can do in and out of training, as an injury to the player could throw this entire situation into flux. However, at the moment, it seems a foregone conclusion.