Sheffield Wednesday: Arminia Bielefeld chief delivers honest verdict on Julian Börner's contract U-turn

Arminia Bielefeld boss Uwe Neuhaus is unhappy over Julian Börner's U-turn on his contract stance as he edges closer to a move to Sheffield Wednesday.

Friday, 10th May 2019, 7:17 pm
Updated Friday, 10th May 2019, 8:38 pm

Börner, Arminia's skipper, had verbally agreed to extend his stay with the German club.

Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Neuhaus said he was "totally sure" the 28-year-old would commit his future to Arminia.

But the left-sided centre-half changed his mind after holding talks with the Owls hierarchy this week. Now Börner is believed to be close to agreeing a deal to move to Wednesday on a free transfer.

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Julian Boerner is in talks with Sheffield Wednesday. Picture: AFP PHOTO / PATRIK STOLLARZ

Neuhaus said: "I was very surprised and of course deeply disappointed.

"During this time, I have been working very hard for him to extend the contract.”

Börner will sit-out Arminia's final two league matches.

Samir Arabi, the club's sporting director, said: "We would have liked to have extended with Julian and the agreement was reached. Therefore, we are disappointed that in this case the given word does not matter. Nevertheless, we wish Julian all the best for his future in England."

Capped twice at Germany Under-18s level, Börner kicked off his career with Energie Cottbus before joining Arminia in the summer of 2014. He has played nearly 150 times for the Bundesliga 2 team.

Börner has previously had interest from England when Norwich City tried to buy him at the start of Daniel Farke's reign. The Canaries reportedly offered the defender a lucrative three year contract.

But Börner spurned Norwich's advances after speaking to his wife, opting to stay in Germany with their new-born daughter.

Börner said: "Of course that was a mega-offer. But with my wife Krissi (who had just had their first child), I decided that we first stay in Bielefeld.

"Money isn't everything. Family always comes first."

Wednesday's approach, though, proved too difficult for Börner to resist.

"It is true that the DSC and I had already verbally agreed on further cooperation for some time, but so far there had been no signing of the contract," he said.

"In the short term, I received a request from England, which I wanted to examine thoroughly.

"Because playing there has always been a lifelong dream of mine, which I can now fulfil. This change includes a sporting and economic component that I could not refuse.

"I am very sorry that I had to withdraw my pledge now. I had five wonderful years at the DSC. Bielefeld has become my home. I wish the DSC Arminia all the best and much success."