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SBD Global/December 4, 2012/International Football
Borussia Dortmund CEO Launches Attack On EPL Ownership
Published December 4, 2012
MORE THAN A BUSINESS: In London, Graeme Yorke reported Dortmund has had its "financial ups-and-downs," but now arguably "boast one of the most successful models in Europe" -- producing exciting young players like Mario Götze and Nuri Sahin and having the opportunity to sell them for great profit. Added to cheap ticket prices, which consistently produce crowds of up to 80,000 fans, they are "the envy of many clubs across the continent." Watzke: "We would make €5M ($6.5M) more a season if we had seats, but there was no question to do it, because it is our culture. In England it is a lot more expensive. Football is more than a business" (DAILY MAIL, 12/2).
THE GERMAN MODEL: In London, Conn wrote on the GUARDIAN's Inside Sport blog "admiration for the German way, posing a challenge to Premier League assumptions, is stretching beyond the Mannschaft's performance, to the nation's clubs and the way it organises football." Even before this week's final round of Champions League group matches, the three Bundesliga clubs have qualified for the knockout stage. Bayern Munich, which earned £290M in '10-11 according to financial adviser Deloitte, is "always expected to qualify." European football has been struck this season by Bundesliga club Schalke, which defeated Arsenal 2-0 at the Emirates Stadium last month, and, in particular, by Borussia Dortmund, who sits atop its "devilishly difficult group" after beating Real Madrid. While growing stronger on the field, German clubs have "purposefully retained traditions and atmospheres off the field too." Fans can still "pay cheaply in their thousands" to stand and watch their teams -- 25,000 supporters in Borussia Dortmund's famed south stand Die gelbe Wand (Yellow Wall) pay a mere €11 ($14) a match to watch the German champions (GUARDIAN, 12/1).