On Tuesday night we witnessed Bayern bury Barcelona and last night Dortmund destroyed Real Madrid 4-1 at the Signal Iduna Park in the Champions League semi-final first leg.
It seems that German football very much has the better of its Spanish counterparts.
Dortmund has been one of the most impressive sides in the Champions League this season, but their performance in last night’s clash was just fantastic.
Real Madrid could not cope with their energy and intelligent off-the-ball running.
Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp has worked hard in recent years instilling his football philosophy into his team and it has paid of domestically, winning Dortmund the Bundesliga title on two occasions. However, they struggled to transfer that style to the Champions League last season and finished bottom of their group.
This season though they have managed to bring their mix of substance and style into the Champions League and they have been a joy to watch. The team from the Ruhr are arguably the most attractive team to watch in Europe’s elite competition.
Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski made history last night by becoming the first player to ever score a hat-trick against Real Madrid in the European Cup. The Polish international’s four goals were all very different, but all vital to his teams cause.
Lewandowski has been one of the most dangerous strikers in European football for a few seasons now and last night’s performance just confirmed his sheer class. The 24-year-old’s contract runs out next summer, but Dortmund are hoping to keep him until then.
Unfortunately, for the ex-German champions it looks like Lewandowski could be on the move this summer. His agent has already confirmed that he will not be signing a new contract and wants to move to pastures new.
According to the German media, a move to Bayern Munich is close to completion. However, Lewandowski has refused to comment about a move elsewhere and stated that he wants to concentrate on the rest of the season.
This season looks to be the last that the current Dortmund team will play together. Mario Gotze has agreed a move to arch-rivals Bayern Munich and it looks like Lewandowski will be following the highly-rated youngster out the door.
Barcelona is tracking talented centre-back Mats Hummels. It would be unfortunate for this superb Dortmund side to be broken-up, but it seems there is a big possibility that Jurgen Klopp will have a rebuilding job on his hands this summer.
Dortmund is the ultimate case of victims of their own success. The better they have done in recent years the more players they lose. Last summer they lost Shinji Kagawa to Manchester United, but replaced him with the outstanding Marco Reus.
It would be impossible to find ready-made replacements for the likes of Gotze, Lewandowski and Hummels though, they are unique players and that is why the team has been so successful.
I wrote in yesterday’s article that I would not rule out an all-German Champions League final. This outcome is now looking more and more likely. It is not beyond Real Madrid to beat Dortmund 3-0 at the Bernabeu; Los Blancos have the firepower to do so.
However, I do not see Real keeping a clean sheet against Dortmund. The movement of Gotze, Reus and Lewandowski was just too much for the Spaniards to cope with. I would be very surprised if Dortmund did fail to score in Spain.
For all their big name players the teams from Spain have come up against two better teams it is as simple as that. Bayern Munich and Dortmund deserve to be the Champions League final and if somehow do not manage it then it will be a shame for the competition.
Liverpool striker Luis Suarez will serve a ten-match ban after biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in last weekend’s clash between the two clubs. The Reds have the right to appeal, but are holding off until they receive the reasons for the ban.
I do not condone the actions of Luis Suarez, but surely, some perspective has to be brought to the incident. The Uruguayan striker did a very silly thing and everybody at Liverpool has admitted the striker did wrong.
However, a ten-match ban seems slightly harsh on the striker when other players are getting away with far more serious crimes without such punishment. This ban also backs the English FA into a corner over the issue of racism.
The FA have banned Suarez for ten-games, yet when he was accused of racism towards Manchester United’s Patrice Evra, the Uruguayan only got eight games. Is a bite worse than racist behaviour? I will leave you to decide.
We will have to wait and see what happens regarding Luis Suarez’s future. The incident and ban will just add fuel to the fire that he will leave Anfield this summer. The loss of Luis Suarez as a sublime footballer will be major, the loss of Luis Suarez as a person will be an easier one to take.
Will Dortmund win the Champions League?
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