Borussia Dortmund appoint club legend Łukasz Piszczek as assistant coach to Nuri Şahin

Borussia Dortmund have officially appointed Łukasz Piszczek as an assistant coach to Nuri Şahin for the coming 2024/25 season.
Poland v Austria: Group D - UEFA EURO 2024
Poland v Austria: Group D - UEFA EURO 2024 / Mateusz Slodkowski/GettyImages

The changes continue to roll in at an exceptional pace at Borussia Dortmund, with transfers and personnel coming in at a high frequency in recent weeks. The appointment of Nuri Şahin as head coach was only the beginning of the club’s fresh start however, with changes to his assistant coaching staff now taking effect as well. Borussia Dortmund have firstly confirmed the separation of assistant coaches Sven Bender and Sebastian Geppert. Whilst Şahin has expressly stated that he would’ve liked to continue working with Bender, their cooperation came to an end due to Bender’s personal circumstances and coaching aspirations.

To replace the outgoing assistant coaches, Dortmund have brought in three new faces, one of which will be extremely familiar to the Dortmund faithful: Joao Tralhao, Ertugrul Arslan, and club legend Łukasz Piszczek. The former Borussia Dortmund and Poland right back had an exceptional career in black and yellow, helping it lead the club to two Bundesliga titles and three DFB Pokal titles on the pitch. He was also part of the team that reached the 2013 Champions League final under Jurgen Klopp.

From a coaching standpoint, Piszczek assumed a player-coach role for boyhood club LKS Goczałkowice-Zdrój, where he most recently led the club to win the 2024 iterations of the „puchar podokręgu Tychy” in Poland. He was even considered an option as an assistant coach of the Polish national team in the tail end of 2023 when it was speculated that Marek Papszun, who formerly coached Polish Ekstraklasa side Raków Częstochowa, would take over the head coaching role.

If we take a look at the coaching staff as a whole, the addition of Piszczek included, Dortmund has compiled a relatively inexperienced coaching staff; one of the issues that many had with the Terzić appointment initially. That being said, much of what Dortmund did well in the second half of the season was also attributed to the return of both Şahin and Bender. This is also coupled with the fact that the club has retained and brought back individuals who directly identify with the club they are now in charge of steering to success. Director of Sport Lars Ricken has been enthusiastic about this change, stating that he is confident in the coaching choices the club has made:

"We have succeeded in putting together a trio with Joao, Ertugrul and Lukasz that brings many skills and good ideas and will work well with Nuri. We are convinced that they will help to play a successful season with their different strengths."

Lars Ricken

There are still many unknowns surrounding the team and how they will perform under the club’s new coaching staff. Nuri Sahin however has come out and also expressed his confidence in Piszczek, stating that he was his first choice once he knew that Bender would be leaving the club:

"Now I am looking forward to the new team and the daily exchange with three specialists, whom I greatly appreciate…I have already worked with Joao and Ertugrul at Antalyaspor. And Lukasz was the first choice for me after it was clear that Sven will unfortunately leave BVB for the new season."

Nuri Şahin

Time will tell just how well this new group of specialists will work together, but it is very clear that a new era is dawning for Borussia Dortmund. It is an era that will be, at the very least, led by a coaching staff that very much understands the club at its core and will hopefully look to bring back a playing style more aligned with the club's previous tendencies to play attractive football. Under Şahin in particular, the expectation is that Dortmund will look to employ a more aggressive and forward-thinking approach to their football, which will be a welcome change that brings the club back to more of what we’ve known them for in terms of play style for the last decade or so.