After it was announced on Tuesday that the first signing of the Pep Guardiola era at Bayern Munich is to be Mario Gotze, I began to think about the possibly very interesting situation that could arise. After watching Bayern thump Barcelona 4-0 and Borussia Dortmund take down Real Madrid 4-1 in the first leg of each match, that situation is looking all the more peculiar, especially if the results hold through the second leg.
Despite having been at Dortmund since the tender age of 8, Mario Gotze felt it was time to move on when Munich decided to match the release clause of 37 million Euros written in his contract. While Dortmund and Munich are the two best teams in Germany, there is a largely held belief that Munich will be a step up for the youngster who is considered one of the rising stars of today’s game. However, let us not forget that for the time being, he plays for Dortmund, the same Dortmund that could end up against Bayern Munich in the Champions League final, the same Bayern Munich he is set to join when the season concludes.
Let me begin by asking the question: How much more ironic could this possibly become? Let’s say that both Dortmund and Munich advance to the final. No matter the result, Mario Gotze is put in a very interesting position. If Dortmund wins, he will likely win forgiveness from the Dortmund fans and will have been a leading figure on what will likely be considered their most successful squad ever. He will also have rudely introduced himself to Munich and denied them another shot at the title that has seemingly slipped out their grasp in recent history. While questions likely could not be asked about whether or not Munich is a step up, questions will most certainly be asked about whether or not he is leaving what could be the golden generation at Borussia Dortmund. However, if Munich end up winning, Gotze will likely face persecution from the Dortmund fan base and will likely be looked at as a traitor. Yet it would likely prove that he is making the right decision in joining the better team. Furthermore, if Dortmund lose, according to rumors floating around, there could be something of an exodus as Lewandowski and Mats Hummels could also be set to leave.
While it is too early for us to tell exactly what is going to happen with Mario Gotze, I think we can all say, if the Dortmund-Munich final is realized, it will be quite the story.