Written By: Brian Ludden
Could this season finally be the one that Borussia Dortmund takes down Bayern Munich?
Bayern has dominated the German Bundesliga for the past decade, winning 8 straight Bundesliga titles. Dortmund is known as the second-best team in the league, but they haven’t been able to break through and win a league title since they won their second straight in the 2011/12 season.
Dortmund made a major signing back in December when they brought in Erling Haaland from the Austrian powerhouse, Red Bull Salzburg. Haaland has made a large impact on the Dortmund side, scoring a remarkable hat trick in only 23 minutes in his debut vs. Augsburg. He finished the season with 16 total goals. Dortmund will also have American youngster Gio Reyna, who made his Bundesliga debut for Dortmund in January vs. Augsburg and became the youngest American to appear in the Bundesliga at 17 years old. Reyna scored his first goal for Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal vs. Werder Bremen, becoming the youngest goalscorer in German Cup history. In addition, Dortmund will have Jadon Sancho, who scored 17 goals and had 16 assists in the Bundesliga last season, along with 3 goals in other competitions. Despite rumors of Sancho heading to Man United, Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc said that Sancho will not be sold in the summer transfer window. This proved to be true as the deadline came and went without Sancho going anywhere. To get an extra advantage on Man United, Dortmund edged out Man United in the race for teenage prodigy, Jude Bellingham. Dortmund signed Bellingham from Birmingham City for a reported 25 million pounds. Bellingham scored four goals in 44 appearances for the first team and now looks to be a regular in the Dortmund squad.
Bayern is just as strong as Dortmund and it all begins with former Dortmund player, Robert Lewandowski. The Polish striker led the Bundesliga with 34 goals in the 2019/20 season and has been the leading scorer in 4 of the past 5 seasons. Lewandowski scored 55 goals in all competitions, averaging over a goal per game. In addition to Lewandowski, Bayern has a rising star in Alphonso Davies. The Canadian speedster has scored four goals for Bayern since moving over from the Vancouver Whitecaps. German midfielders Serge Gnarby and Thomas Müller scored 23 and 14 goals respectively, and Müller led the Bundesliga with 21 assists. The last key aspect of Bayern’s success is that they have one of the world’s best keepers in Manuel Neuer. Neuer had 22 shutouts in all competitions and started all but one of Bayern’s Bundesliga matches. Once again he figures to be one of, if not the top keeper in Germany once again.
Bayern is a very strong team and surely are the favorites to win the Bundesliga again next season. Despite Bayern’s strength, Borussia Dortmund has begun to gain chemistry, especially with new first-team players such Reyna and Bellingham. I believe that Borussia will only get stronger and will compete with Bayern once again.
The only question that remains is will it be enough for Dortmund to take down Bayern for the first time since 2012? Only time will tell.
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