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Dortmund boss Terzic: Haller 'finally available' for competitive return

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Berlin, Jan 20, 2023 (AFP) - Borussia Dortmund manager Edin Terzic said on Friday striker Sebastien Haller was ready to make his return from testicular cancer in Sunday's clash with Augsburg.

Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Terzic said Haller would be in Dortmund's match-day squad, hinting that the France-born Ivory Coast international may start from the bench, having not played a competitive fixture since May 2022.

"He's presented himself very well. It was a long downtime for him," Terzic said.

"We are proud of him (and) how he fought through and we are happy he is finally available to us.

"We'll see then whether he plays from the start."

Haller, who underwent four rounds of chemotherapy and two operations, was diagnosed mere days after signing with Dortmund and is yet to make a competitive appearance.

Earlier in January he came off the bench in two friendly matches, scoring a hat-trick in eight minutes in his second outing.

Dortmund had a disappointing first half of the season and sit in sixth place, nine points behind leaders Bayern Munich.

For the first time this season however, Terzic can count on an almost full complement of players, with only Belgian defender Thomas Meunier and winger Mateu Morey definitely missing on Sunday.

Slight injury clouds remain over captain Marco Reus and midfielder Emre Can.

Terzic said new signing Julian Ryerson was in line for a starting berth, just days after arriving from Union Berlin.

"We are delighted that Julian has chosen to join us. He plays intensely and is dangerous offensively."

Terzic also addressed the future of teenage forward Youssoufa Moukoko, who was given an ultimatum to re-sign with the club by the end of the week by sporting director Sebastian Kehl.

"We are glad that there will soon be some clarity (about Moukoko's future)" Terzic said.

Moukoko, 18, is expected to extend his deal at Dortmund despite interest from abroad including Premier League clubs Newcastle and Chelsea.

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