I If you don't like schmaltzy Instagram moments, look elsewhere now. Following the DfB Pokal final, Edin Terzic posted a photo then and now. The first is 2012, at the then-equivalent show, she wears a casual hat, scarf-tight, and zippered BVB casual wear - with her supporters at the Berlin Olympics booth - fashionably perched. The second – as the title suggests – is nine years later on the Olympiastadion field, with Terzic embracing the jeweled Pokal trophy and smiling contentedly.
It takes a hard heart not to feel anything, or at least to appreciate the journey in the context of a particularly tough season. A lot of fluctuating emotions have been accumulated for many clubs in this unusual and disturbing campaign for many reasons, but Borussia Dortmund and their coaches are in just as much trouble as anyone else.
Everything went well this week. In a German season, perhaps owned by Robert Lewandowski, dessert preceded main course for his old club. On Thursday night, BVB knocked out RB Leipzig 4-1 in the Pokal final, and then on Sunday unexpectedly entered the Champions League top-four with a in-form win at Mainz and returned to the Champions League. They needed a boost – and just when Schalke fans thought their miserable season couldn't get any worse, their unusually flamboyant 4-3 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday opened the way for their fiercest opponents to gain the edge – but they took advantage in a way that seemed unlikely a few weeks ago. .
Exactly six weeks ago. This was also the season for André Silva (and for all Lewandowski and current Dortmund's ninth Erling Haaland to shine) a late night at Signal Iduna Park to spark big Eintracht celebrations and leave the BVB thinking about an obscure sport. it was the time he got the win – and to some extent – the financial future. That was no 2005 melted down of course, but losing the financial trophy of the Champions League all these years would hurt.
Not only did it seem difficult, it's borderline impossible. After this costly loss in the first weekend of April, BVB was seven points behind the top four. The way the team played was just as bad – it was disorganized, messy, and as moody as anything shown in the dog days of Lucien Favre's reign. The escape route from this self-made bond by the team seemed more theoretical than realistic.
Speaking of escape routes, Mino Raiola's tour of the European suitors was an interesting twist on an epidemic-stricken transfer. market, but carefully timed. Haaland of your plan to Dortmund is 2021, but we are in control of that. Raiola speaks for himself, but from Haaland's point of view the subtext was that if Dortmund did not make it to the Champions League, there would be another speech, a rivalry in which the player never concealed his admiration.
the waters are much calmer now and the recent words of sporting director Michael Zorc reiterating that Haaland will be a Dortmund player next season no longer seem like window dressing. One possible person's original plan to exit 2022 now looks realistic again, more likely that Haaland's sports needs will be met in the short term. There is no doubt in Haaland's own hand in shaping his destiny and the fate of the team with his two goals in a Pokal final where he bullied soon-to-be Bayern Dayot Upamecano, and the season overall is 25 goals in the Bundesliga alone.
Nor is it simple to say that his return to Jadon Sancho did a tremendous thing to close the gap. The England winger went the extra mile from diet adjustments to raising a level by 5am late winter, running alone in the city centre, and this past week he's had a big boost. In the pivotal Bundesliga win over Leipzig last weekend, after scoring a match, including the late winner, Pokal became the highlight of the final, opening the score with a rasping finish and adding a second. The only time Sancho made a mistake in Berlin was when it took him too long to finish off his chance to score a good hat-trick, but it seemed brave for him to complain.
Yet while Haaland and Sancho's contributions deserve recognition, it all goes back to Terzic. Few blamed him when season one after the Frankfurt defeat looked like he was going to hell on a wheelbarrow – 38 – the one-year-old was thrown in the deep and asked to continue with him. The club's experience at youth levels under Jürgen Klopp and his work with Slaven Bilić at Beşiktaş and West Ham were helpful, but taming a panicked Bundesliga monster didn't seem like preparation.
As recently as February, there was a suggestion that Terzic might need to be replaced to save the season. Yet he was smart enough to take the advice of a man who was suggested as an unlikely replacement. “The biggest advantage is that Matthias Sammer isn't there every day, but has a view from the outside and from the grandstands,” Terzic said in March.
Terzic has been admired and admired for his history, admiration and, as Jürgen Koers of Ruhr Nachrichten puts it, his “black and yellow heart and soul”, but his the froid sang It has been tremendous under great pressure. This has helped BVB finally find consistency, helping Jude Bellingham wrap up an extremely productive first season and even helping captain Marco Reus look more like his old self in recent weeks rather than a season starter figure.
Whether Terzic will fall under Marco Rose is debatable – what it means now is that his coaching talent is too great to be kept on ice. He has already written his name in Borussia Dortmund history and that will mean a lot.
sat: Arminia Bielefeld 1-1 Hoffenheim, Augsburg 2 -0 Werder Bremen, Freiburg 2-2 Bayern Munich, Hertha Berlin 0-0 Cologne, Leverkusen 1-1 Union Berlin, Mönchengladbach 1-2 Stuttgart, Schalke 4-3 Eintracht Frankfurt. Sun: Leipzig 2-2 Wolfsburg, Mainz 1-3 Dortmund
Lewandowski, Gerd Müller's 40 – goal season record at Freiburg paid tribute to him with a T-shirt, received a guard of honor and then missed a seemingly unmissable chance to break the record in the second half. “I never thought this could happen,” Lewandowski told Sky. “I am proud to share the recording.”
Wolfsburg clinched their top four in a draw in Leipzig on Sunday evening, but coach looks suspicious Oliver Glasner will stay to take them to the Champions League, telling Sky "We're going to have a big party and then it'll be time to talk about me."
Werder Bremen eventually lost patience with Florian Kohfeldt and replaced him with club legend Thomas Schaaf after being relegated to the relegation playoff court after a 2-0 damaged defeat at Augsburg. On the last day they need to beat Borussia Mönchengladbach safely to automatic relegation, play-off spot or all possibilities – all three scenarios are open to Cologne and Arminia Bielefeld.