Julian Brandt calls for Borussia Dortmund to “subordinate everything to collective success”.

WOLFSBURG, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 07: Julian Brandt of Germany talks with the media during a press conference on September 07, 2023 in Wolfsburg, Germany. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
WOLFSBURG, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 07: Julian Brandt of Germany talks with the media during a press conference on September 07, 2023 in Wolfsburg, Germany. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images) /
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Borussia Dortmund’s Julian Brandt commented on the issues the team has been having at the start of the 2023/24 Bundesliga season.

In an interview posted by Ruhr Nachrichten, Borussia Dortmund’s Julian Brandt touched upon a number of topics pertaining to his personal performances, change in diet, but most interestingly had some choice words to say about his club’s current run of form in there Bundesliga. Dortmund have only managed to take five points out of a possible nine so far, something that Brandt was quick to admit was an issue:

"“We have five points, it should have been nine….it is always important for me to get something positive out of the situation, and I’d rather it happen after the third match day, where nothing much has happened, than after the the 11th match day, when we’ve long since lost our minds.”"

Brandt’s call for a quick turnaround is something that he believes the club can certainly achieve, but there was no sugar coating the fact that the team had created the situation that they find themselves in all on their own:

"“…it must be clear to everyone, something is fundamentally wrong here! 2-0 at half time against a promoted team, you have to win the game, period. We brought this drama one ourselves.”"

Brandt’s words are a show of self awareness that is welcome. Placing blame anywhere but the team’s own displays in the last two games at this point would be non-productive, but the willingness to accept a need for change is the first step to improvement. For Brandt, Dortmund need to go forward and show a collective unity once the international break comes to an end. In a more tangible sense Brandt also called for better decision making in the final third, and more acute awareness of one’s teammates positioning before taking or creating chances:

"“We have to act as a unit with and against the ball. On offense we have to find the best possible finishing position and also pass the ball to others. It’s about the success of the collective.”"

In the past few games, the team could be criticized for a lack a sharpness and accuracy when passing. Many loose balls led to turnovers in dangerous positions. With Dortmund’s propensity to commit many players forward in attack, these counters led to many three-on-two or four-on-two situations that had the defense scrambling, whilst creating an opening for the opposition to exploit. Brandt called for better defending all around in these situations, but also admitted that the offensive players need to do their part in this regard as well and up their game defensively.

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All in all, Brandt’s assessment is one that is shared by many supporters; the club need to work on looking more like a unit on the pitch. The disjointed nature of their play so far will not get them far in terms of their pursuit of silverware, but if Brandt and his teammates can take his open and honest assessment to heart, perhaps we will bear witness to a strong turnaround after the international break comes to as conclusion.