With a strong final spurt, Borussia Dortmund turned a long disappointing season into an almost very good season. It will now be important for BVB not to overlook the hair in the soup. A comment from SPOX editor Jochen Tittmar.
In the case of Borussia Dortmund, after the 2020/21 season has ended, football is not only the much-cited daily business, but also weekly business. Seven weeks or 50 days ago, BVB was still in front of a heap of pieces after its home defeat against Eintracht Frankfurt, the athletically and economically essential qualification for the Champions League was seven points away with seven game days before the end.
At that time, neither SGE nor Borussia could foresee how extreme, contrary and thus surprising the developments of the next 50 days would be. The preliminary conclusions that were drawn at the time came prematurely with today’s knowledge and now have to be modified – especially at BVB.
The balance of Westphalia is: third place in the league including CL qualification, with the cup victory, the first title in four years and in the premier class is a respectable loss in the quarter-finals against the potential winner Manchester City. The set goals for the season have thus all been achieved, although 64 points are not a glory for this club, which would like to imagine closer to permanent champions FC Bayern Munich.
The decision of those responsible to replace coach Lucien Favre with his co-Edin Terzic finally bore fruit. Under him, Dortmund put down the longest winning streak of all teams in this Bundesliga season in the final sprint. The season of BVB almost deserves a “very good” – if it weren’t for the time before these seven threes in a row.
BVB final spurt increases the risk of blackout
Due to the strong final spurt, there is now a certain risk of darkening: First and foremost, those responsible at BVB, but also those around them, must not gloss over or even glorify what went wrong for much of the year. Because this season was the next impressive proof of how enigmatic this team can be. It must now be the most urgent task to decipher this riddle and at the same time clarify, which is why the team only delivered when it felt the knife at its throat.
The managing director Hans-Joachim Watzke and sports director Michael Zorc, who are jointly responsible for this vague circumstance, will be measured by the result of these investigations in the new season. The future head coach Marco Rose will then have to reverse the trend in a sporting way. After his inglorious end in Gladbach, with and without Terzic, he will be under the public eye as an assistant coach right from the start.
After Jürgen Klopp’s departure in 2015, it is the next new chapter that BVB is now trying to open with Rose, the sixth coach since then. The past few weeks have determined what the benchmark for this looks like and what it should look like for a club of this economic dimension. In the medium to long term, dealing with the pandemic and its financially devastating effects will also be about stabilizing the club and maneuvering it further towards a successful future, which will have to be contested in the foreseeable future without the two veterans Watzke and Zorc.
The 50 days since Frankfurt have ensured success for BVB and for the protagonists also a certain relaxation after an intense year. Looking at the situation in the new season, however, one thing is clear: after printing is only before printing.