Real Madrid vs. Dortmund: Second Leg Showcases Black and Yellows' Road Woes
Borussia Dortmund has proven time and time again that it has the talent to be the best squad in Europe—and subsequently the world.
Now it's just time to do it consistently.
The Black and Yellows lost budding superstar Shinji Kagawa to Manchester United this summer, but that has done little to slow down the two-time defending Bundesliga champions. They've given up their spot atop the league to Bayern Munich, but a trip to the UEFA Champions League final more than quells whatever disappointment that dropoff might create.
If they are going to find a way to take that next step and bring home the club's first Champions League trophy since their only other in 1997—and if they are going to fully return to the golden age—they must play to their potential at Wembley Stadium later this month.
Unfortunately, success away from Signal Iduna Park hasn't been a guarantee this season.
Football away from home is never easy, no matter who the team, but Dortmund is just 9-5-2 on the road in Bundesliga play this year.
Again, that's an away record many clubs would do unspeakable things to obtain, but it's not indicative of how talented Dortmund can be.
One only needs to look at their semifinal matchup with Real Madrid for proof.
In the first leg in Dortmund, the good guys thoroughly dominated Cristiano Ronaldo and Co., jumping out to a 4-1 aggregate lead on the strength of 14 shots and a legendary, world-class effort from Robert Lewandowski.
They held tough for most of the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu, but Madrid controlled nearly the entire match (65 percent possession, 23 total shots, seven on target), pushed in two goals in the final 10 minutes and made things a little more interesting than Dortmund would have liked.
It's not a question of whether Die Borussen gets support on the road, because that was answered in staggering fashion in Spain this week (via Football Ultras):
They're not quiet or lacking passion, either, as evidenced by this video of fans singing for their former player (h/t Reddit):
Again, that's on the streets of Madrid.
Instead, as it is with most teams, I believe Dortmund's road inconsistency is a product of losing focus and desire.
Against Bayern, who is an astounding 14-1-0 on the road in Bundesliga play and just easily wiped away freakin' Barcelona at Camp Nou, that unequivocally can't happen.
Otherwise, the UCL final will be over before Dortmund even boards the plane.
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