Borussia Dortmund's 2013 Champions League finalists: Where are Lewandowski, Gündogan, Klopp and Co. now?

by 24britishtvMay 8, 2024, 8:01 p.m. 25
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Borussia Dortmund may have come up short against Bayern Munich in the 2012/13 UEFA Champions League final, but BVB’s thrilling run to Wembley will remain etched in the memories of football fans for many years to come, and they now have the chance to gain redemption at the same venue after making it to the 2023/24 showpiece.

Some of today’s biggest stars turned out for Dortmund in London on 25 May 2013, but where are they now? bundesliga.com investigates…

The former Kaiserslautern goalkeeper ended his 16-year association with Dortmund when he hung up his gloves in 2018 shortly before he turned 38. A two-time Bundesliga winner with BVB prior to helping his team reach the 2013 Champions League final, Weidenfeller played every minute of Die Schwarzgelben’s run to the Wembley showpiece, even keeping four clean sheets along the way. The ex-Germany international racked up 453 appearances for Dortmund - not bad for a free transfer signing.

The former Poland international right-back turns 39 in June, but is still playing. He's player-coach of Polish third tier side LKS Goczałkowice-Zdrój. He joined Dortmund in 2010 from Hertha Berlin, and few would have imagined he would end that spell 11 years and 382 competitive appearances later. At Wembley, he had his hands full trying to keep France speedster Franck Ribéry quiet during the final - no mean feat considering the Pole was due to have surgery on a long-standing hip problem. Crucially, however, it was Ribéry’s wonderful back-heeled pass that freed Arjen Robben for the matchwinner. Like Weidenfeller, Piszczek won two Bundesliga titles with BVB, and a league and cup double in 2012.

Ex-Serbia international Subotic started alongside central defensive partner Mats Hummels in the 2013 Champions League final and even produced a stunning last-ditch sliding clearance to deny Robben what looked an easy tap in with the game locked at 1-1. After a decade at Dortmund, he left in 2018, going on to play in France for Saint-Étienne, returning to Germany to join Union Berlin for their first Bundesliga season in 2019/20 before six-month spells in Turkey and Austria brought the curtain down on his career in 2021.

A doubt up until the last because of an ankle sprain, Hummels recovered in time to take his place at centre-back for the final and was kept on his toes throughout thanks to a dynamic Bayern forward line led by Mario Mandžukić. Hummels originally left Bayern to join Dortmund on loan for the 2008/09 season, later making the move permanent having impressed enough to become a first-team regular with the club. Some 309 appearances later, he returned to his boyhood club in 2016 and the 2014 FIFA World Cup winner with Germany added three Bundesliga titles to the two he won at Dortmund. He returned to the Signal Iduna Park in 2019, passing the 500 competitive appearance mark for BVB during the 2023/24 season and headed home the semi-final second leg goal that eased Dortmund's passage through to the club's third Champions League final.

The former Dortmund captain was born in the former East Germany, but played his entire senior career in Dortmund colours. The man they called ‘Schmelle’ was inches away from poking out Robben’s cut-back for Mandžukić's opening goal in the 2013 showpiece. Present in all 13 of BVB’s Champions League games in 2012/13, the Magdeburg native scored the winning goal in his team’s group stage triumph against Real Madrid. He spent 17 years in total at Dortmund, the last 14 in the first team and racked up 367 competitive appearances before retiring in 2022. He became assistant coach of Dortmund's U17 team for the 2023/24 campaign, and will be part of the reserve team's coaching staff for the 2024/25 season.

Injuries restricted Bender to just 20 Bundesliga appearances for BVB during the 2012/13 season, but the 1860 Munich youth product featured in all but two of his side’s 13 Champions League encounters, starting nine. Having played every minute of both semi-final legs against Real, Bender turned in another tireless performance at Wembley and went close to putting Dortmund ahead midway through the first half, firing straight at Manuel Neuer from inside the penalty area. After making 224 appearances for the club in all competitions, the seven-time Germany international swapped Die Schwarzgelben for Bayer Leverkusen in 2017 where he described the chance to team up with twin brother Lars at the BayArena as “a real bonus”. After four years there, he and his brother retired in 2021 with Sven becoming assistant coach of Germany's U16 and then U17 sides before joining Edin Terzić's staff at BVB in January 2024.

Watch: Old Familiars Back in the Fold

Tasked with filling the boots of the departed Nuri Sahin in 2011, Gündoğan helped Dortmund to a domestic double in his very first season at the club and played a crucial role in Borussia’s route to the final the following campaign. He was widely heralded as their best player against Real in the last four, but struggled to stamp his authority on the final as Bayern enjoyed the lion’s share of possession at Wembley. The Gelsenkirchen native kept his cool from the penalty spot midway through the second half, sending Neuer the wrong way after Dante had fouled Marco Reus inside the area, but it was not enough to prevent Jupp Heynckes’ side from claiming the victory. Hampered by injuries during his time at the Signal Iduna Park, Gündoğan still managed 157 outings for the Yellow-Blacks in all competitions before joining Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City in summer 2016. With his game ideally suited to the former Bayern coach's philosophy, Gündoğan played a central role in City's five English Premier League wins during his time there. He also picked up two FA Cup, four League Cup and a Champions League winner's medal before heading to Barcelona in summer 2023.

The Polish dynamo gave Bayern left-back David Alaba a torrid time in London, but did not shirk his defensive responsibilities in the slightest, often tracking back to help compatriot Piszczek deal with the effervescent Ribéry. After joining the club from Wisła Kraków in 2007, ’Kuba’ wasted little time in establishing himself as a firm favourite at the Signal Iduna Park, playing a key role in the club’s double-winning 2011/12 campaign. Błaszczykowski's displays for BVB that season even earned him a place on UEFA’s 32-man shortlist for the Best Player in Europe Award. He spent three years at Wolfsburg after leaving Dortmund in 2016 having netted 32 and assisted a further 52 goals in 253 appearances for the North Rhine-Westphalian giants. He ended his career in 2023 after four years with his first club, Wisła.

After joining from Borussia Mönchengladbach in 2012, Reus hit the ground running in his first season at the Signal Iduna Park, scoring four goals and setting up as many in Dortmund’s run to the final. Calm and composed in possession at Wembley - particularly in the first half - Reus seldom allowed Bayern’s central defenders any time on the ball and won the penalty from which BVB drew level in the 68th minute. Named Germany’s Footballer of the Year in 2012, his performances in 2012/13 also earned him a place in the 2013 UEFA Team of the Year. Over 400 appearances and 160 goals later, Reus is preparing to leave Dortmund with - perhaps - a Champions League winner's medal, which his teammates have promised to get him as a goodbye gift.

Criticised in some quarters for his semi-final second-leg display against Madrid, Dortmund-born utility man Großkreutz was a bundle of energy in the first half at Wembley but tired in the second as Bayern’s attacking midfield trio of Robben, Thomas Müller and Ribéry began to turn the screw. A diehard BVB supporter, Großkreutz clocked up 236 appearances for his boyhood club before joining Turkish side Galatasaray in 2016. A 14-month spell at VfB Stuttgart was followed by a move to Darmstadt for the 2017/18 season. He completed his career with a couple of years at Uerdingen, retiring from the professional game in January 2021, but continuing to play at amateur level.

The prolific Pole came into the Wembley showpiece having netted 36 goals in 48 appearances for BVB in 2012/13 - including a remarkable four-goal haul in the semi-final first leg against Real. He started brightly in London and was only denied a first-half opener by an excellent Neuer save, but was marshalled relatively comfortably by Bayern centre-backs Dante and Jerome Boateng after the break. Lewandowski netted 103 goals in 187 outings for BVB before leaving to join Bayern, where he broke a number of scoring records, notably the single-season mark of Gerd Müller from the 1971/72 season when he struck his 41st league goal of the 2020/21 campaign. He collected eight Bundesliga titles, three DFB Cups and a Champions League in the treble-winning season of 2019/20 with Bayern before joining Barcelona in 2022, picking up the La Liga title in his first season.

Having masterminded BVB’s Bundesliga and DFB Cup double the year before, Klopp went into the 2012/13 campaign determined to re-establish Dortmund as a European force. Despite being drawn alongside Manchester City, Real Madrid and Ajax in the so-called “Group of Death”, the Stuttgart-born coach not only guided Borussia to the top of Group D but also led the club to a first Champions League final since 1997, establishing himself as one of the world’s brightest tactical minds in the process. He took over at Liverpool in 2015, guiding them to the UEFA Europa League final in his first season having beaten Dortmund in a dramatic quarter-final. Klopp ended the club's 30-year wait for the English Premier League title in 2019/20, and has also won an FA Cup and one of the three Champions League finals he has taken the Reds too in his time at Anfield. During the 2023/24 season, he announced he would be stepping down as Liverpool manager at the end of the campaign.

Read more about Dortmund's route to the 2023/24 final!

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