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Team 33 | The signs that Germa...

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Team 33 | The signs that German football's 50 + 1 rule is "under fire"

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01:20 29 Aug 2018


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It's 13 years since Borussia Dortmund almost became extinct as a football club after flirting dangerously close with financial oblivion. 

The first German club to float on the stock market at the dawn of the Millennium, the 1997 Champions League winners had to wait until the Jurgen Klopp to return to the upper echelons of domestic and European football, winning back-to-back Bundesliga titles in 2011 and 2012, as well as getting to the 2013 Champions League final when they lost to rivals Bayern Munich, who had loaned Dortmund €2 million during their flirtation with financial trouble.

But the club is no stranger to financial struggles and yo-yoing and it's one of the points I touched on with renowned German football writer Uli Hesse on this week's Team 33.

You can listen to the full chat with Uli Hesse on the podcast player or on iTunes:

Team 33 | The signs that German football's 50 + 1 rule is "under fire"

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

He has released a new book called Building The Yellow Wall: The Incredible Rise and Cult Appeal of Borussia Dortmund and joined me on the show to discuss Dortmund's most brutal lows and epic highs as well as touching on this season's team who are under new head coach Lucien Favre and opened the season with a victory over RB Leipzig.

The latter are an interesting club in the sense that they are an antithesis to the 50+1 fan ownership model of most other Bundesliga clubs like Dortmund and their Yellow Wall of fans, which has made them the targets of rivals' ire.  

But could the fact that clubs like Leipzig, as well as others like Wolfsburg, Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen, lead to a further erosion of the 50+1 model? 

"Yes, it probably does. It's a big topic at the moment," said Uli.

"There's two aspects to it. One of it is some club representatives think the rule has already been eroded so much that it's almost unfair to keep it because clubs like Wolfsburg and Leverkusen are exempt from the rule and Leipzig have found a cunning way around the rule and Hannover might be the next club to get around the rules.

"The other aspect is the international competitiveness where some people think that Germany needs an influx of fresh money. They hope it will come from investors which I doubt but there are some signs that the rule is under fire." 

Also on this week's show, there was an impassioned debate about the Declan Rice situation as the West Ham player deliberates over remaining an Ireland international or switching to the country of his birth England.

Joe Coffey, Derek Ryan and Killian Woods got their teeth into that one, with opinions divided, and you can listen here:

Apart from Gary Neville and Arsenal Fan TV founder Robbie Lyle, recent interviews on Team 33 include former Man United cult hero Andrei Kanchelskis, ex-England international Carlton Palmer, former Newcastle and Everton left back Alessandro Pistone, Chelsea legends Bobby Tambling and Paddy Mulligan, Dutch legend Johan Neeskens, ex-England striker Darius Vassell, Liverpool legend David Fairclough, former Ireland midfielder Mark Kinsella, USA captain Eric Lichaj and former Everton forward Tomasz Radzinski. Plus our in-depth chats with Tony CotonPackie BonnerNobby SolanoRon Atkinson and Alan Curbishley are still available on iTunes. You can find them all in one place by subscribing to Team 33 on iTunes.

 

 

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


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