Sports

May 31, 2024

Champions League: Underdogs Dortmund have ‘total belief’ against Real Madrid

Champions League: Underdogs Dortmund have ‘total belief’ against Real Madrid

Dortmund players take part in a training session at Wembley stadium, in London, on May 31, 2024 on the eve of their UEFA Champions League final football match against Real Madrid. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)

Borussia Dortmund midfielder Julian Brandt said the German underdogs have “total belief” ahead of Saturday’s Champions League final clash with Real Madrid at Wembley.

Real have lifted the trophy 14 times to Dortmund’s one and are heavy favourites, but Brandt said Dortmund were unawed.

“They’re the ultimate opponent, there’s nothing bigger in the Champions League, with their success and their history.

“But if we didn’t believe then we could stay in Dortmund. We have total belief and will show that tomorrow.”

Tipped by many not to make it out of a group featuring Paris Saint-Germain, AC Milan and Newcastle, Dortmund qualified first.

The German side — who finished fifth in the Bundesliga this season — made it past Dutch champions PSV Eindhoven, Real’s city rivals Atletico Madrid and PSG again on the way to the final.

Dortmund coach Edin Terzic said “we’re happy to be here, but we’re here to win.”

“You don’t come here to play a final, you come here to win it. We want to hold that trophy in our hands.”

Terzic said he saw “anticipation, desire and excitement” in the faces of his players.

Defender Nico Schlotterbeck said Dortmund could draw inspiration from their semi-final victory over PSG, who they beat 1-0 both home and away.

“We kept two clean sheets which is a huge success against such a strong attack — an attack you could compare with Real’s.

“We know we can beat anyone. We beat PSG twice – we’re happy to go into the game tomorrow knowing that.

“Without that belief, we wouldn’t have come here. And we have a chance to win the game tomorrow… I think we’ll win it.”

Winners in 1997 in Munich against the heavily favoured Juventus, Dortmund lost the 2013 final at Wembley to German rivals Bayern.

A win on Saturday would mean Dortmund join Chelsea, Benfica and Juventus as clubs to have lifted the trophy two times.