Column declaration of love: borussia dortmund

In professional soccer, everything is usually swallowed. But the BVB team complained about the early restart of the match.

Photo: TOM

Three explosive devices hidden in a hedge explode on the way to the stadium, the players throw themselves to the ground, one is injured, a metal pin bores its way into a headrest in the bus – and less than 24 hours after this attack, the Borussia Dortmund team, having just escaped death, already has to be on the pitch for its Champions League match. The fact that players and coaches are not simply putting up with this and are sharply critical of this decision by Uefa deserves a lot of love – especially in an industry where keeping one’s mouth shut is commonplace.

Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière defended the last-minute rescheduling in Bild by saying that "we must not allow ourselves to be intimidated," otherwise "the terrorists would already have won." The players see things differently in unison: "We were treated like animals," said defender Sokratis, for example; Nuri sahin and coach Thomas Tuchel expressed similar sentiments. That’s understandable. After all, terrorists are known to be concerned with far more than postponements in the soccer match schedule. That’s why it’s not enough to just keep on talking. Indifference is certainly not the right response to terror. Do we really want a ritualized mourning routine, only to quickly forget everything afterwards?

So the BVB team is right to resist the expectation of carrying on without fear. And also the expectation of their own CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke, who thanked the team for "making itself available" because "our democracy has been put to the test. And it now has to be defended by soccer players? Nobody seems to be thinking about stopping and thinking about what could actually be done to counter the terrorist threat. The main thing is that a new match date does not overlap with other sources of income for soccer.

It is precisely in view of the fact that the reactions to terrorist attacks are always the same – they are either instrumentalized or relativized – that the statements made by the BVB pros are so noteworthy because they are human.

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