Despite the pedigree of Borussia Dortmund, I don’t think Newcastle United have anything to fear…
I caught a glimpse of the Borussia Dortmund team bus heading up St James Boulevard last night and there were already a few Germans kicking around town.
Things will slowly build today and I reckon the atmosphere will be cracking this evening.
I wrote an article ahead of our famous victory against PSG – trying to capture who we were up against – and have done the same the same with Dortmund.
Ballspielverein Borussia 09 e. V. Dortmund, commonly known as Borussia Dortmund or simply Dortmund was founded in 1909.
The football team is part of a large membership-based sports club with more than 145,000 members. Since 1974, Borussia Dortmund have played their home games at Westfalenstadion. The stadium is the largest in Germany and Borussia Dortmund has the highest average attendance of any association football club in the world.
Dortmund’s formation was quirky. It was founded by a group of young men unhappy with the Catholic church-sponsored Trinity Youth, where they played football under the stern and unsympathetic eye of the local parish priest, Father Dewald. When the organisers held a meeting in a local pub to plot the formation of the new club, the priest was blocked at the door!
Whilst the name Borussia is Latin for Prussia, it was taken from Borussia beer from the nearby Borussia brewery. The team began playing in blue and white striped shirts with a red sash, and black shorts. In 1913, they donned the black and yellow stripes so familiar today.
Alongside those anti-religious sentiments, Borussia’s president had no time for the Third Reich and was replaced when he refused to join the Nazi Party. In addition, a couple of members who surreptitiously used the club’s offices to produce anti-Nazi pamphlets were executed in the last days of the war.
In the modern era, the club has continued the good fight and founded a charitable trust called leuchte auf, to give important social projects financial help. The trust’s logo is a star consisting of the streets which meet at Dortmund’s Borsigplatz, where the club was founded. More notable causes in recent years include raising funds to help victims of the Japan earthquake and tsunami of 2011 and extensive floods in Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt in 2013. Along with Bayern Munich, RB Leipzig, and Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Dortmund provided financial assistance to Bundesliga teams that were struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the field, Borussia Dortmund has had much success. The Bundesliga only began in 1963, but Dortmund has won it five times, their first title coming in 1995. It should have been six, their last day balls up in the final match of last season, a disappointing 2–2 home draw against Mainz costing them dear as Bayern Munich claimed their eleventh consecutive Bundesliga title.
Borussia Dortmund are of course, no strangers to the Champions League. This season is the twelfth time in thirteen years that they’ve qualified and they landed the big cup back in 1997 when they beat Juventus 3-1. They followed this up by beating Brazilian club Cruzeiro 2–0 in the Intercontinental Cup Final to become world club champions.
So, once again we face tough opponents at St James’ Park with plenty of European pedigree.
However, as was the case when we swatted the Parisians aside, we have nothing to fear.
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