Arsenal and Manchester United will have been disappointed on hearing that Mario Gotze had signed a contract extension with Borussia Dortmund.

 

Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson were two of those credited with an interest in signing the young German attacking midfielder, but their reported offers have been shunned for the love of their boyhood club.

 

Gotze joined BVB as an eight-year-old and has worked his way up through the youth ranks to become a key member of the first team during their title-winning season last year.

 

Players such as the 19-year-old are a rare breed and they evoke a special feeing the their club’s fans.

 

Loyalty is something that many believe to missing from today’s game, which makes examples of it pounced upon and paraded with great gusto from club officials and supporters alike.

 

Gotze signed an extension to his current deal that keeps him contracted to the Westfalenstadion club until the summer of 2016.

 

There are two interpretations of this agreement and both have been put forward in equal measure on popular social media platforms.

 

One says it is a victory for football romance and proof that love for a club outweighs the riches on offer from the Premier League and elsewhere.

 

The other more cynical view suggests that an extension of the deal is merely a way for the Bundesliga champions to get as much as they can from their most valuable asset when he inevitably leaves.

 

Dortmund fans will be hoping the former is the case and that the talented playmaker will spend all of his best years with the club that moulded him into the player he is today.

 

They have more than just hope of this happening, as there are examples of a player’s bond with a club and its fans proving to string to want to break the connection.

 

You could look to AS Roma and their talismanic pair of Daniele de Rossi and Francesco Totti, both of whom have turned down lucrative offers in the past to stay in the Italian capital.

 

Totti is the idol of Roma fans and captain’s the side, with De Rossi as vice-captain – the latter of the two recently signed a new contract with the club, reportedly turning down interest from wealthy Manchester City.

 

De Rossi could have made a veritable fortune had he seen out his contract to the summer and left on a free transfer.

 

Italy seems to be the place for the ‘One Club Man’ and another who has taken a similar path is Paolo Maldini at AC Milan – the Italian football legend played over 900 times for the Rossoneri and is considered one of the greatest defenders to have played the game.

 

However, it is probably a bit easier to stay with a club as successful as Milan – Maldini won Serie A seven times and the European Cup/Champions League on five different occasions.

 

It is not only on foreign shores that tales such as this exist, England has seen it happen before on a number of occasions.

 

Tony Adams spent his entire 22-year career with Arsenal and captained the side to two League and Cup doubles in what became the club’s most successful ever period.

 

Matt Le Tissier is another who did something similar, staying at Southampton for 16 years and famously turning down a move to Manchester United.

 

There are many others who have decided to stick with a single team their entire career but modern football makes it more and more unlikely to happen.

 

The increased influence of agents over transfers mean that moving to other clubs becomes more and more likely for players, especially the young talented ones such as Gotze.

 

The riches on offer at some of Europe’s wealthier sides can sometimes be too much to turn down, which also applies to the clubs that are offered significant transfer fees.

 

Whether the contract renewal means the mercurial German international has been convinced to stay with Die Schwarzgelben for the long term is impossible to say, but their continued success will do no harm to the chances of it happening.

 

Whatever the future holds, Dortmund fans are probably dreaming of Gotze joining the ‘One Club Man’….club.

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