‘God turned a blind eye to Royce and Dortmund’: Dream win in hometown after 11 years, final setback… Lee Jae-Sung helps No. 4
God has turned his back on Marco Reus and Borussia Dortmund.
Dortmund finished as runners-up again after slipping up at the final hurdle in a 2-2 draw against Mainz in the final match of the 2022-23 German Bundesliga season at Signal Iduna Park in Dortmund, Germany, on Sunday (27 July).
After winning back-to-back league titles in 2010-11 and 2011-12, Dortmund had to watch Bayern Munich win 10 consecutive titles from 2012-13 onwards. Along the way, they finished runners-up six times, seven if you include this season.메이저놀이터
It was a golden opportunity. Dortmund had 70 points before the Mainz game, ahead of Munich, who had 68. With a win, they could win the title on their own. It would be the first time in 11 years that they would be back on top.
Before the game, all eyes were on Royce. The Dortmund man had been with the club for more than a decade, returning to his hometown in the 2012-13 season. But there was no victory. Injuries struck, and key players like Mario Gotze, Robert Lewandowski, Ousmane Dembele, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang left for big clubs. But Royce stuck with Dortmund, and for once, it looked like they might actually win the title.
Dortmund had won all four meetings with Mainz since May 2021, forming a ‘nemesis’ relationship. Their last defeat was as far back as 2020, so they were strong enough to win the final match. The players were fully motivated.
Dortmund pushed hard from the start. They threatened Mainz in the fourth minute with a sharp shot from Donyell Maren and in the seventh minute when Nicklas Schürrle converted a corner opportunity.
However, only one close call resulted in a goal. Andreas Hansch Olsen conceded a header from a corner in the 15th minute. Dortmund had a chance to equalise, but Sebastien Haller missed the penalty. Then, in the 24th minute, Lee Jae-Sung’s pinpoint cross was headed home by Karim Onisewo to make it 0-2.
The unexpected concession left Dortmund unable to find their feet. An injury to Karim Adeyemi in the 40th minute forced Royce to make an early introduction and sparked a fightback, but no goals were scored in the first half.
Dortmund fought back furiously in the second half and missed a number of crucial scoring chances. The best of their misfortune came in the 69th minute, when Raphael Guerreiro fired home after a great link-up with Giovanni Reina to make it 1-2. Schürrle finally equalised in stoppage time, but it was too little too late.
Dortmund took the three points, but the problem was the results of their matches against Munich and FC Koln, which took place at the same time. Being heavily outclassed on goal difference, they were hoping that Munich would either draw or lose to Cologne, and that seemed to be the case. Kingsley Coman opened the scoring in the eighth minute of the first half, but the Bavarians conceded in the 88th minute through Dejan Lubic to make it 1-1. But in the 89th minute, Jamal Moussaouiallah opened the scoring for Cologne, making it 2-1 and sealing the title.
It was a nightmare for Dortmund and a blessing in disguise for Munich. In the end, Dortmund’s players collapsed in their seats after the game and broke down in tears. Royce, Jude Bellingham, and many others couldn’t keep their heads up. “Bellingham cheered his teammates on during the game, handing them water, and was sad afterwards,” said British outlet SportsBible. He was seen pushing away cameras pointed at him,” reported the British outlet.
It was perhaps Dortmund’s closest chance to win the title this season. With Bellingham signing for Real Madrid this summer, and news of his arrival expected soon, another star player has left the club. Dortmund have been able to cope with the constant departures of key players, but perhaps this season’s setbacks will hurt even more than before.