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What comes next for Borussia Dortmund after Thomas Tuchel exit?

Following months of upheaval behind the scenes at Borussia Dortmund, Thomas Tuchel was sacked only days after winning the 2017 DFB-Pokal -- the club's first trophy in five years.

So, going into yet another turbulent postseason at Dortmund, here are five questions which need to be addressed at the Westfalenstadion this summer.

Who will take over?

OGC Nice head coach Lucien Favre has been the front-runner since CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke made the disagreement between club and Tuchel public in early May. Dortmund want a quick decision, but will have to negotiate with the Ligue 1 side where Favre remains under contract until 2019.

The former Borussia Monchengladbach and Hertha Berlin coach has already worked with incoming midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud as well as Marco Reus and right-back Lukasz Piszczek, whom he transformed into right-back during his time at Berlin.

German football magazine kicker have reported that personal terms with Favre have already been agreed, but BVB would have to pay a transfer fee in the €5 million region to convince Nice to allow the 59-year-old to return to the Bundesliga.

Frankfurt's Niko Kovac and Ajax Amsterdam's Peter Bosz have also been named as candidates, but Julian Nagelsmann seems set to remain at Hoffenheim for another year.

Will any players follow Tuchel out of the door?

Borussia Dortmund's squad was split into several factions over the past few months, with dressing room leaders Marcel Schmelzer, Marco Reus and Nuri Sahin making it clear that they did not want Tuchel to stay. Others, like Spain international Marc Bartra, have backed Tuchel in public -- the 26-year-old defender was the first player to thank the outgoing coach in public, tweeting: "It's been a real pleasure Thomas. I wish you all the best!

But a mass exodus from the Westfalenstadion is not expected. Forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who was reportedly Tuchel's closest ally in the squad, will most likely leave the club, but has strongly been linked with a big-money move for a while now.

Germany international Matthias Ginter also is a candidate to leave after three largely unimpressive seasons. But while the squad may be thinned out, there are no indicators that the squad will be torn apart as it has been in previous seasons.

What does this mean for Christian Pulisic?

Pulisic is under contract at Dortmund until 2020, a deal he signed at the beginning of 2017. While he has made all his senior appearances under Tuchel, he joined the club during the Jurgen Klopp era.

Following his impressive first full campaign in professional football, he has established himself as a crucial option for Dortmund's attack either in the starting formation or coming off the bench like in the DFB-Pokal final.

The American will very much be part of the plans of Dortmund's new coach and, given the winger's impact this season, he will be a key player despite only turning 19 in September.

What does Tuchel's departure mean for the club's fans?

In recent weeks, fan groups at Dortmund have been split. Some closer to the club wanted Tuchel gone; others focused on the results and were keen for him to stay. Even inside the Dortmund end at the DFB-Pokal final on Saturday, the anti and pro-Tuchel sections could be located easily.

Tuchel's departure will take some getting over but, by publishing an open letter only hours after Tuchel's exit, Watzke already made an effort to win back public opinion.

Will Tuchel's exit have an influence on Dortmund's long-term goals?

Another summer of upheaval and another coach with a new system could mean Dortmund struggle early on in the new season. However, they have already qualified for the Champions League and still have a squad able to finish in the top four.

Although sporting success can never be guaranteed, Dortmund had no choice but to risk putting short-term goals in danger while they try to aim for their long-term goals. They overcame a difficult last year under Klopp and now have time to prepare for the new season under a new coach.

Unlike some of Europe's elite, they have been able to detach the economical side from sporting success, so don't expect Dortmund to become just another Bundesliga side anytime soon.

Stephan Uersfeld is the Germany correspondent for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @uersfeld.


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