Sebastiaan Bornauw admits he turned down Crystal Palace and Norwich City due to the prospect of Champions League football at VFL Wolfsburg, speaking to Het Nieuwsblad.
And who can blame him, really?
After finishing fourth in the Bundesliga last season, just four points behind second-placed RB Leipzig, Wolfsburg have secured a seat at Europe’s top table for the first time in half a decade.
Once more, after being handed a very favourable group-stage draw – Mark Van Bommel’s side will go head-to-head with Sevilla, Red Bull Salzburg and a Lille side who look a shadow of their Ligue 1-conquering best – do not bet against Wolfsburg still being a Champions League team when the flowers bloom and the swallows start signing.
Did Sebastiaan Bornauw make the right decision?
Crystal Palace and Norwich both attempted to lure Bornauw to the Premier League after his impressive 2020/21 campaign at FC Koln.
But as soon as Wolfsburg expressed their interest, there was only one side the Belgian international centre-back was interested in joining.
“I spoke to English clubs,” says Bornauw, who set Wolfsburg back a cool £13 million.
“One day I want to play in the Premier League. But when Wolfsburg knocked on the door, I was immediately won over by their project.
“This club makes young players better. We are aiming for the top three (in the Bundesliga) and to play in the Champions League.”
Three games, three defeats and a league-high ten goals conceded, Daniel Farke’s backline already looks like if could be their Achilles heel once again with fans fearing a repeat of that disastrous 2019/20 campaign.
Wolfsburg, meanwhile, are sitting pretty at the top of an embryonic Bundesliga table, the only side with a 100 per cent record so far.