Borussia Dortmund was formed on 19 December 1909 by a predominantly youthful group of steelworkers and miners. The decision was a spur-of-the-moment affair and the name an equally spontaneous choice. “Borussia” was appended to the front because it was the house beer served in the pub where the meeting took place. So the club is effectively named after the founding members’ favored beverage. Heinrich Unger was elected chairman. During the 1930s, Borussia Dortmund emerged as one of the best teams in the country, but in common with the vast majority of German clubs, it had to be rebuilt practically from scratch after the Second World War.
Borussia Dortmund Debut
As early as 1949, BVB made a debut appearance in the German championship final, only to fall 3-2 after extra-time to VfR Mannheim. The great moment arrived in 1956 as Borussia Dortmund beat Karlsruhe 4-2 in the final to claim their first national title. Borussia retained the trophy the following season, fielding the same starting line-up in a 4-1 victory over Hamburg SV to seal a second crown. The third followed in the year before the creation of the Bundesliga. BVB defeated 1. FC Cologne 3-1 in 1963 in the last-ever old-format German championship final. Dortmund then finished fourth in the inaugural Bundesliga season.
Borussia Dortmund secured the German Cup in 1965, winning on their second appearance in the final 2-0 against Alemannia Aachen. A major international success was to follow in 1966 with a 2-1 extra-time victory over Liverpool in the European Cup Winners Cup as Dortmund became the first German club side to claim international honors.
Borussia fell on hard times for a spell after this. It suffered the ignominy of relegation from the Bundesliga in 1972. The first incarnation of the Westfalen stadium was constructed in anticipation of the 1974 FIFA World Cup finals. The ground was steadily expanded through to the end of the 1990s. BVB returned to the top flight in 1976 and began attracting an average crowd of over 40,000, considerably more than any other Bundesliga rival at that time.
Fact: Dortmund worst ever defeat was 12-0 to Borussia Mönchengladbach in 1978
Despite this extraordinary level of support, the club ran into serious financial difficulties in the early 1980s. Their fortunes on the field suffered accordingly. Borussia Dortmund was forced into a relegation play-off against second division Fortuna Cologne in 1985-6 but clung onto their top-flight status. A revival followed at the end of the decade. Borussia made the 1989 DFB German Cup final, defeating Werder Bremen 4-1 for the first trophy in 23 years.
The 1990s proved the most successful decade in the history of the club. The management pulled off a masterstroke in 1991, hiring the unknown and relatively inexperienced Ottmar Hitzfeld as coach. In 1995, Hitzfeld led BVB to their first German championship in 32 years, a trophy they were to retain the following season. And Borussia suddenly emerged as a force on the international stage, too, producing a stunning 3-1 victory against Turin giants Juventus to win the 1997 UEFA Champions League before battling past Cruzeiro Belo Horizonte 2-0 to claim the Toyota Cup.
However, glorious success was followed by a rapid fall from grace in an eerie repeat of the previous history. Coach Hitzfeld and several key players from the roster moved on, and a raft of costly, big-name replacements failed to match expectations. The nadir came in 1999-2000 as Borussia were left teetering on the brink of relegation.
Borussia Dortmund Becomes Public
On 30 October 2000, Dortmund became the first German club to seek a public listing. Most of the revenue from the flotation was spent on new players. The club duly sealed a sixth German championship in 2002 and made the Uefa Cup final, only to fall 3-2 against Feyenoord of Rotterdam. But the return to glory proved short-lived. Severe financial problems returned to plague the club as debts mounted to over €100 million. Officials were able to fend off the threat of a compulsory winding-up order. Still, until a new management team can stabilize the situation, Dortmund is not expected to feature prominently on the international stage.
Jurgen Kloop Era
In May 2008, the club appointed Jurgen Kloop. He had a significant impact on the club instantly. In 2009, they qualified for the Europa League by finishing 5th.
Kloop built a young and energietc roster with players like Shinji Kagawa, Mats Hummels, Ivan Perišić, Jakub Błaszczykowski, Mario Götze, Łukasz Piszczek, Neven Subotić, Kevin Großkreutz, and Robert Lewandowski. With this squad, they went on to win the championship in 2010-11 and the following season in 2011-12. Borussia Dortmund also won the DFB-Pokal in 2012 to cap off a great season.
Fact: Borussia Dortmund and Borussia Mönchengladbach hold another record. The most penalties in a match – 5 in one game in 1965
The club capped its successful 2011–12 season by winning the double for the first time by beating Bayern 5–2 in the final of the DFB-Pokal. They finished second in the Bundesliga the following season and lost the Champions League final to Bayern Munich.
In 2015, Jurgen Klopp decided to move on. Since this era, Borussia Dortmund has been runners-up three times and won two DFB-Pokal, the German knockout football tournament.
Club Name: Borussia Dortmund
Founded: 19 December 1909
Home Ground: The Westfalenstadion. Capacity 81,359
Home Jersey: Bright yellow shirt, with black trimmings. Made by Puma.
Honors: German championship (8), DFB German Cup (6), German Super Cup (5), Champions League (1), European Cup Winners’ Cup (1), World Club Cup (1).
Past Greats: Hans Tilkowski, Lothar Emmerich, Alfed “Adi” Preissler, Heinrich Kwiatkowski, August Lenz, Matthias Sammer, Stefan Reuter, Karl-Heinz Riedle, Michael Zorc, Stephan Chapuisat, Norbert Dickel, Marcel Raducanu, Aki Schmidt, Jürgen Kohler, Manni Burgsmüller, August Lenz, Alfred Niepieklo, Alfred Kelbassa, Mats Hummels, Robert Lewandowski
Records: Michael Zorc – 572 appearances, Alfred Preissler – 162 goals.
Official Website: www.bvb.de
Main Image: Steffen Flor