Borussia Dortmund is in shock. The nightly news on Monday about the serious illness of new signing Sébastien Haller caused deep dismay for everyone involved. Just a few hours after the morning training session, during which the 28-year-old Ivory Coast international complained of being unwell, doctors diagnosed a tumor in his testicles.
“This news today came as a shock to Sébastien Haller and to all of us. The entire BVB family wishes Sébastien a full recovery as soon as possible and that we can hug him again soon,” commented sporting director Sebastian Kehl.
Shortly after the diagnosis, Haller left the Bundesliga soccer club’s training camp in Bad Ragaz (Switzerland) and set out on his return journey to Dortmund. According to BVB, “further examinations will take place in a specialized medical center”. “We will do everything in our power to ensure that he receives the best possible treatment,” said Kehl. The Bundesliga club did not want to give any further information when asked.
Only after the evening test against FC Valencia (1:3) in nearby Altach (Austria) was the team informed about their team-mate’s illness. Even coach Edin Terzic was obviously not in the picture shortly after the final whistle: “Sébastien woke up this morning and didn’t feel so good. He trained anyway. After that, the symptoms got a little stronger,” he replied when asked about the reasons for Haller’s surprising absence.
The goalscorer, who was signed by Ajax Amsterdam for over 30 million euros, had only started preparing for the new season a week earlier. He is considered BVB’s king transfer this summer and is intended to close the gap in the center of attack that arose after Erling Haaland’s departure to Manchester City. At his first public appearance in the black and yellow jersey last Sunday, Haller exuded confidence: “I’m not coming to Borussia Dortmund as someone’s successor, but because the club needs my quality. So I will do my best to give back the confidence.”