From Toni, Lucio & Worns to Gomez, Badstuber & Hummels: How Bayern & Dortmund have changed since the 2008 DFB Pokal final

ANALYSIS
By Sebastian Heier & Clark Whitney

On Saturday night, the Olympiastadion in Berlin will bear witness to the highlight of the season: the DFB Pokal final clash of Bundesliga champions Dortmund and German record champions Bayern Munich.

Over the last two years, a fierce rivalry has developed between Saturday's finalists. BVB have secured two consecutive Bundesliga titles, beating Bayern four times in a row: reason enough that the Bavarians will do everything possible to pip Jurgen Klopp's men to the Pokal title.

The 2012 final will not be the first time that Bayern and Dortmund meet in the Pokal showpiece. On April 19, 2008, the two sides clashed in Berlin in a fiercely-contested match. Luca Toni opened the scoring on 11 minutes, but Mladen Petric drew BVB level in stoppage time, forcing 30 additional minutes.

The Italian completed his double in extra time, lifting Bayern to cup glory. Both scorers have since left their respective clubs, and they are not the only ones. In fact, out of the 28 players to participate in the 2008 final, only six remain.

DORTMUND 2008
BAYERN 2008

4-4-2

Ziegler
Rukavina - Worns - Kovac - Dede
Kuba - Tinga - Kehl - Kringe
Petric - Frei

4-4-2

Kahn
Lell - Lucio - Demichelis - Lahm
Schweinsteiger - Van Bommel - Ze Roberto - Ribery
Klose - Toni

Trainer: Thomas Doll

Trainer: Ottmar Hitzfeld

Subs: Klimowicz (Frei, 71'), Buckley (Rukavina, 79'), Valdez (Kehl, 86') Subs: Podolski (Klose, 69'), Sagnol (Schweinsteiger, 86'), Ottl (Ze Roberto, 113')


A glance at the line-ups from 2008 shows just how much things have changed for the clubs in just four years. The only remnants of the BVB team are Jakub 'Kuba' Blaszczykowski, Sebastian Kehl, and Florian Kringe: of these three, only the captain, Kehl, is a first-team regular, and his role is under heavy pressure.

Bayern, too, have undergone wholesale changes: core players Franck Ribery, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Philipp Lahm remain, but the starting line-up and bench have been otherwise cleared and replaced with other talents.

Now the two teams are studded with stars: Mario Gomez, Mario Gotze, Mats Hummels, Shinji Kagawa, Toni Kroos, Manuel Neuer, Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben are just several of the highly-rated talents that play for the current Bayern and Dortmund teams.

Since the 2008 Pokal final, Bayern and Dortmund have met eight times, all in the Bundesliga. The Bavarians got the better of the first four encounters, winning three and drawing one. But BVB have won each of the last four, which is a testament to their development.

DORTMUND 2012
BAYERN 2012

4-2-3-1

Weidenfeller
Piszczek - Subotic - Hummels - Schmelzer
Gundogan - Kehl
Gotze - Kagawa- Grosskreutz
Lewandowski

4-2-3-1

Neuer
Lahm - Boateng - Badstuber - Alaba
Luiz Gustavo - Schweinsteiger
Robben - Kroos - Ribery
Gomez

Trainer: Jurgen Klopp

Trainer: Jupp Heynckes


In 2008, the favourites were quite clearly Bayern, who despite not having all the star power of today still dwarfed Dortmund in terms of talent. But since then, much has changed. After the final, Jurgen Klopp replaced Thomas Doll as head coach of BVB, and began the club's transformation.

The German record champions have undergone plenty of changes as well. In 2008, they played in the Uefa Cup, and were knocked out by Zenit after losing 4-0 in St Petersburg. Since then, Bayern have reached two Champions League finals.

Heading into Saturday's encounter, it is fully evident that two peers will meet at eye-level. With both clubs packed with talent, form and tactical fine-tuning on the night will decide the result. Whereas in 2008 viewers might have expected a one-sided match, now we have real reason to hope for a spectacle of football.

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