These are the times that try men’s souls.
At the time of this writing, it has been a week exactly since a far-right extremist group detonated bombs outside Borussia Dortmund’s team bus. Even though everyone was alive, it was a harrowing experience. Investigators say that if the explosives had been detonated a single second earlier, there could have been fatalities.
Despite all that, they were rushed into playing a champions league match that had no business being played. The end result was a 3-2 defeat to Monaco, which quite frankly nobody really cared about. Whatever the tactical mistakes may have been, it was obvious that the players could barely think about soccer. Considering their lives had almost been taken less than 24 hours prior, who could blame them?
Tomorrow, this small chapter in Borussia Dortmund’s history could potentially be closed. Dortmund need to win by at least 2 to pass, unless the score is 3-2 BVB, in which case the match would go to extra time. They can also win 4-3 and move through on away goals.
If there is good news, it’s that Dortmund have a familiar face returning. Ladies and gentlemen, Marco Reus. The Dortmunder Jung made his return this weekend against Eintracht Frankfurt, and scored three minutes in. He’s been one of the best players in the world when healthy this year. If he can help carry BVB through to the semifinals, he could cement his already legendary status as a BVB hero. After what the club has gone through this past week, it would mean the world to a lot of people.
It certainly won’t be easy. Monaco have scored goals at a ridiculous rate this season against quality competition. Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City learned that lesson the hard way. They’ve also unseated Paris-Saint-Germain as the top club in France, again no easy feat. Kylian Mbappe showed his prowess in the first leg at the WFS, and in front of a home crowd (albeit probably a pitiful one), he will be itching to do the same again. BVB’s defenders will have to perform to their absolute best in order to stop them.
Tomorrow night has the potential to be one of the most memorable nights in club history. Here’s to hoping that Borussia Dortmund can seize the day and make history.