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Anyone else think Bayern Munich is playing dirty?

May 23, 2013, 3:33 PM EDT

PST Subo

Is anyone else bothered by the way Bayern Munich have conducted themselves ahead of this Saturday’s Champions League final?

I certainly am.

It all began back on the night of April 22nd when Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp found out the story was about to break that Munich had triggered Mario Gotze’s €37m release clause. Klopp first knew of the signing back on April 10th, the day after BVB came from behind to oust Málaga in the Champions League quarter finals. “I had one day’s happiness,” Klopp said.

Gotze’s departure was something that Dortmund, facing a crucial Champions League semi-final clash with Real Madrid two days later, had hoped to keep under wraps. But on April 23rd all of Germany knew of the young superstar’s fate when the cover of Bild stated: “Götze Zu Den Bayern [Götze to Bayern].”

Awful suspicious timing, wouldn’t you agree?

Klopp later admitted that the news was devastating, claiming that “on a scale of one to 10, this is a nine.” The manager went on to explain: “We all know why it has come out now. We don’t know why the people who have leaked this have done so at such a delicate time.”

With no choice but to confirm that it was true, BVB took to their Facebook page and issued the following statement: “Mario Götze’s agent Volker Struth told us a few days ago that the player wishes to make use of his release clause and on July 1, 2013 move to Bayern Munich.” Shortly thereafter Bayern confirmed over their official website: “Bayern Munich confirm that the club have reached an agreement with national team player Mario Götze that he will play for Bayern Munich from 1 July 2013.”

Not exactly the ideal PR event before Dortmund’s first Champions League semi-final since 1998.

The upstart club were justifiably crushed by the news. Bayern attempted to claim their innocence by issuing a statement saying they had wanted to wait until after Dortmund’s match with Madrid as they didn’t want to be a distraction.

In the face of darkness, Dortmund kept it classy as they asked for fans to “support Mario Götze unconditionally as they would any other player in the final games of the season” as they seek a place in the final. And the Yellow Wall did just that, helping BVB produce a stunning performance that crushed Madrid 4-1.

But as soon as Dortmund had begun to lick its wounds, more bad news came as Bild reported that earlier in the week striker Robert Lewandowski had signed with Bayern. Munich rushed to issue a statement claiming that, “contrary to these reports, do not have any contract with Robert Lewandowski.” But it didn’t matter as Lewandowski’s agent, Maik Barthel, acted on the news and announced: “We have reached an agreement with a club and intend (him) to move this summer.”

Again, awful suspicious timing to say the least.

Six days later Dortmund traveled to Madrid and held on to lose 2-0, which was good enough for a 4-3 aggregate victory. Bayern, meanwhile, coasted to a 7-0 aggregate destruction of Barcelona ensuring the two Bundesliga sides will face off in the Champions League final at Wembley.

So what does this all mean?

Well, by triggering Gotze’s release clause, Munich is effectively trying to buy the Champions League title. And by perpetuating rumors concerning Lewandowski, Bayern is engaging in a dirty, desperate line of dark arts.

Their motivation?

To impart revenge on the club that spent the last two years embarrassing them by stealing their Bundesliga glory.

We’ll see if the plan works.

  1. Dan - May 23, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    With all due respect, and I know there needs to be build up to this match, there is nothing here to point at Bayern. The story has come out that it was actually a Manchester City official who leaked the news of Goetze to Bayern to the press. Not Real Madrid, as previously believed, or even Bayern.

    Bottom line, Bayern have nothing to gain, whatsoever, from leaking news like this or getting involved in any other hearsay. Bayern are the best club in the world right now and have been for the entirety of the 2012/13 season. From an objective point of view, Bayern are not the kind of club to air out dirty laundry in the press and, rather, are quite business like.

    • danielofthedale - May 23, 2013 at 4:30 PM

      Nothing gain? I beg to differ! They buy Dortmound’s, the team with a 50-50 of facing Bayern in CL final at the time, best midfielder and now are actively pursuing their best forward. This does two things. It guts the motivation of Goetze and Lewa (Goetze will miss the game thankfully for us Dortmund fans) in the CL Final as they would not want to upset their future bosses and teammates. It also serves a metal blow to the rest of the team as they know two of their best teammates are no longer really with the club. Leaving themselves to wonder if the pair really has the interest of BVB first and foremost.

  2. capsfan19 - May 23, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    Is it just me or does he [goetze] look like justin bieber?

  3. nygiantstones - May 23, 2013 at 5:01 PM

    All’s fair in love and war. Sports are war.

  4. jrocknstuff - May 23, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    Call me crazy, but I personally believe Bayern have a lot to do with Goetze not playing on Saturday

  5. bazimon - May 23, 2013 at 11:17 PM

    So I guess being a well run, financially viable and intelligent club is dirty…Poor little hipster Dortmund…Bayern is a class club….Known to financially bail out even rival clubs.

  6. pf1977 - May 24, 2013 at 8:36 AM

    i know some speculation was the Goetze story was leaked to the media to deflect from all the news on Bayern’s Uli Hoeness’ legal problems. its possible he might get some jail time perhaps for his tax evasion.

    i don’t think Bayern is playing dirty. this has always been their MO, find and acquire the best talent in Germany. in the 90′s Dortmund was just as financially powerful as Bayern were and they started bringing back all the German players from Italy and other foreign leagues and competing with Bayern for all the best players in the Bundesliga.

    i think this or next year will be the last season that Dortmund will have to sell players as they will be paid off of all their debts. their cash from the Champions League, the new Bundesliga TV deal, improved sponsorship deals, and from having the largest stadium in Germany i think will start to see them get back to be closer to even footing with Bayern again.

    • Dan - May 24, 2013 at 9:45 AM

      Keeping Lweandowski, too, would be a major part of that.

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