DORTMUND, Germany — Usain Bolt has completed a two-day trial spell with Borussia Dortmund, with the sprint legend scoring once in an open training session in front of more than 1,000 fans.
Bolt, an eight-time Olympic gold medallist and world-record holder in the 100 metres, trained behind closed doors on Thursday, and United States international Christian Pulisic told ESPN FC he had been delighted to work with the 31-year-old.
Speaking to reporters after the open training session in front of 1,409 fans and many members of the media — in which he headed home a Mario Gotze cross with his first touch — he said: “I’d give myself a seven out of 10.
“It was good. I had fun with the guys — they were very welcoming. I would like to continue training with the team.”
Admitting that he was not in his best shape, Bolt ruled out going to a lower-level club, saying: “I want to play in a top league.”
Dortmund had promised that they would give him “a realistic assessment” of his chances of playing professionally, and coach Peter Stoger said after the session: “If he wants to make at the highest level, he still has a lot of work to do.
“At his age, there is not that much room for development.”
Stoger praised Bolt as “a relaxed, and down-to-earth guy” and said: “He really wanted to get to know the team. He understands football, and he showed some good elements.”
Pulisic, meanwhile, said he was “delighted that the fastest man in the world is training with our team.”
Some criticised Bolt training at Dortmund as a marketing stunt by Puma, who are club shareholders and kit suppliers as well as the sprinter’s sponsor, but BVB sales and marketing executive Carsten Cramer told ESPN FC Dortmund were “proud” he had chosen to train with them.
Stephan Uersfeld is the Germany correspondent for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @uersfeld.