Excellent with PSV Eindhoven in recent seasons and on a Euro 2020 where he will have done well despite the early exit from the Netherlands, Donyell Malen (22) was eagerly awaited at Borussia Dortmund.
Signed for 30 million euros, he had to compensate (since his role on the field is different) the departure of Jadon Sancho to Manchester United. With the new coach Marco Rose setting up a 4-4-2 diamond, Erling Braut Håland's steadfast role at the forefront was not a problem and suggested a good partnership.
However, the beginnings were complicated for the Dutch striker who alternated between starter and replacement during the first two months of competition. This has even been quite criticized by Lothar Matthaüs pundit for Sky Germany:
“I think you can expect a little more from newcomer Donyell Malen. I have been disappointed in him so far. In Gladbach (0-1 defeat, September 25), he barely passed an opponent and did not score the match offensively. " Negative opinions brought by observers who will even gradually be heard within his club.
While Norwegian Erling Braut Håland is currently injured, Donyell Malen was expected to take over. Unable to perform as expected, he even lost his place in favor of Thorgan Hazard. Only scored a goal and two assists in 17 appearances, the Dutch international is far from having the sufficient contribution. Often lost on the pitch, he also cannot meet the demands of his coach Marco Rose.
Last weekend, the former coach of Red Bull Salzburg and Borussia Mönchengladbach returned to his striker situation: “For Donny, it's about getting used to the Bundesliga, to speed, to physicality. He must also work on his state of mind. It's important that he also expends a lot of energy to get the ball back in order to get into other situations.” Showing the carrot while waving the stick, Marco Rose is well aware that Donyell Malen needs to do a lot more to hope for success at Dortmund.
An observation shared by the sports director Michael Zorc. As reported by Kicker, the latter also expects more from Donyell Malen and intends to accompany him: “It is obvious that Donny is not yet showing what we were hoping for. He gives off too little danger in front of the goal and offers too little. We have to work with him on this.” Resembling a foreign body within this Marsupial team, Donyell Malen seems more than ever under pressure and the patience of his club will not be eternal. It's up to him to come back stronger after the international break.