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Champions League: Lionheart Reus a key for Dortmund to survive at Stamford Bridge

Berlin, March 6 (IANS) Having experienced all sorts of ups and downs in football might be a reason for Marco Reus not to appear overwhelmingly enthusiastic these days.

Rarely has another German footballer learned the hard way how quickly things can slip out of one’s hand when life interferes with your dreams.

It is far from a secret that the Borussia Dortmund forward is enjoying his side’s current good form, as silverware has come within reach.

But ahead of the second leg of the UEFA Champions League last-16 encounter against Premier League side Chelsea, the 33-year-old is taking things easy despite a 1-0 lead after the first game, reports news agency Xinhua.

Reus seems to count on letting actions speak louder than words despite the current upswing.

The German international might experience one of his most prosperous seasons since slipping into Dortmund’s shirt 11 years ago.

His fight for a two-year contract extension in the autumn of his career might trigger additional motivation. In contrast, rumours speak of the club intending to only offer an additional year along with a salary cut. Reports speak of eight instead of 12 million euros per year.

Whatever might be behind Reus’s performance, praise seems to come down on him like warm spring rain.

Coach Edin Terzic explicitly spoke of him as someone walking in the front line as the lion-hearted “Capitano we want to see.”

Having missed many of Germany’s major tournament participations due to injury, the 2022/23 season provides the chance to create his most successful season and stand for a happy end to a partly bumpy career.

The silverback hasn’t lost youthful excitement when it comes to competitions in both training sessions and games.

Reus is one of the first to fight for victory since Terzic set up new training patterns: “No exercise ends with a draw; we always go for a final result.”

The coach’s actions seem to affect the team’s on-pitch performance, as tight games have lately turned in favour of Dortmund.

A robust fighting spirit seems inevitable when it comes to the delicate duel at Stamford Bridge, as not only Terzic and Reus expect a “fight that is demanding all of our energy.”

The newly-gained determination seems to come at the right time to help survive the intense challenge in London.

Easing the burden of the Blues’ attacks is one of Reus’ main tasks, “as the key will be us creating efficient counterattacks to ease tensions” as sporting director Sebastian Kehl put it.

“We might have turned things last-minute in our favour, but I can’t simply see us as the lucky side. We ask for victory by hard work and will,” Reus said, adding: “I know what is needed against Chelsea, but I feel a healthy share of confidence in us.”



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