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Dortmund claims Bundesliga trophy

Updated: 2012-04-23 08:01
( China Daily)

Dortmund claims Bundesliga trophy

Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller (center) and midfielder Sebastian Kehl (right) celebrate with teammates after winning their match against Moenchengladbach on Saturday. Dortmund was confirmed as German league champion after the 2-0 victory on its home field. [Photo/Agencies]

Borussia Dortmund, a young team assembled at minimum cost, won the Bundesliga for the second season running on Saturday after a 2-0 home win over Borussia Moenchengladbach.

Ivan Perisic and Shinji Kagawa, plucked from the Japanese second division two years ago, scored in each half as Dortmund wrapped up the title with two games to spare and completed its 26th league game without defeat.

Juergen Klopp's side, which on Saturday included six players aged 23 or under, left more glamorous rival Bayern Munich standing as it opened up an unassailable eight-point lead over the Bavarians with two games to play in the season.

It was the eighth time Dortmund has been German champion, five of them in the last 20 years.

Dortmund's players celebrated by pouring huge glasses of beer over each other and coach Klopp as well as a startled Sky television commentary team that was broadcasting from the touchline.

"I haven't got words to describe what this team has achieved," said a beer-soaked Klopp, a coach who is known for his exuberant celebrations.

"It's just amazing. If ever there's a team that deserves to be champions, then it's us."

Dortmund claims Bundesliga trophy

Borussia Dortmund's Lukasz Piszczek (R) pours a glass a beer over his coach Juergen Klopp after winning the German Championship following their German first division Bundesliga soccer match against Borussia Moenchengladbach in Dortmund, April 21, 2012. [Photo/Agencies]

Dortmund came close to financial collapse seven years ago, and CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke is credited with guiding the 1997 Champions League winner into the most exciting sports brand in Germany over the course of the past two seasons.

"It's unbelievable, when you remember where we have come from," he said.

Second-placed Bayern, which kicked off earlier, kept the race going for as long as it could when Franck Ribery scored in the last minute to give it a 2-1 win at Werder Bremen after Naldo had scored at both ends.

At the other end of the table, Kaiserslautern was relegated after two seasons in the top flight despite beating fellow struggler Hertha Berlin 2-1 away to end a 21-match winless run.

The result plunged second-bottom Hertha into further trouble while Cologne, which is 16th and in the relegation playoff place, also dropped points at home in a 1-1 draw with VfB Stuttgart.

Hamburg SV, the only ever-present team since the Bundesliga was founded in 1963, eased its relegation worries with a 1-1 draw at Nuremburg.

Dortmund has 75 points from 32 games while Bayern, which guaranteed its place in the Champions League next season, has 67.

Schalke, in the third direct Champions League place, have 57 and fourth-placed Gladbach 56 in the Champions League playoff spot.

Although Gladbach enjoyed plenty of early possession, Kagawa hit the post and Robert Lewandowski, Dortmund's revelation this season and top scorer with 20 goals, fired a low shot narrowly wide as the hosts played their usual high-tempo game.

Reuters in Berlin

Dortmund claims Bundesliga trophy

Borussia Dortmund's Moritz Leitner (L) Mario Goetze and Mats Hummels (R) celebrate winning the German Championship after their German first division Bundesliga soccer match against Borussia Moenchengladbach in Dortmund, April 21, 2012. [Photo/Agencies]

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