Historisches Bild von Wolf Paul mit dem Europapokal der Pokalsieger

1959 – The first Triumph in Europe

The era of the "Wirtschaftswunder" (economic miracle) was also the era of BVB. In addition to the two championships in the second half of the 1950s, the "golden decade" saw another league title, the first cup victory, and the first triumph of a German team in the European Cup.

In 1961, Borussia made it to the final for the fourth time. However, a heavily rejuvenated team was no match for 1. FC Nürnberg and lost convincingly 0-3. Hermann Eppenhoff took over and successfully continued Max Merkel's work by integrating young players ("Hoppy" Kurrat, Charly Schütz, Timo Konietzka, and Lothar Emmerich). In 1963, Borussia finished second in the West, but made it to the final round and won the last German Championship final in Stuttgart 3-1 against 1. FC Köln. Dortmund's Timo Konietzka scored the very first goal at the start of the new Bundesliga. In the European Cup, BVB reached the semi-finals after a remarkable performance against Benfica Lisbon but lost to eventual champions Inter Milan.

In 1965, the Black and Yellows made it to the DFB-Pokal final for the second time after 1963 (losing 0-3 to HSV) and this time, after a 2-0 win over Alemannia Aachen, entered the European Cup Winners' Cup. Here, they eliminated Atlético Madrid in the quarter-finals and West Ham United in the semi-finals, making football history on May 5, 1966: as the first German team, they won a European Cup. The team led by captain Wolfgang Paul triumphed in the Cup Winners' Cup with a 2-1 victory after extra time over FC Liverpool. Siggi Held and Stan Libuda with a "looper" in the 107th minute secured the triumph.

After finishing as runners-up in 1966 and third the following year, a gradual decline began. In 1968, they finished only fourteenth, and the following season, they narrowly avoided relegation until the last matchday.

Anecdotes from the Decade

May 5, 1964

Board Fires Eppenhoff / Eppenhoff Fires Board

An unexpected and highly dramatic turn of events occurred today in the affair surrounding the dismissal of BVB coach Hermann Eppenhoff by the board after the game against Inter Milan. Due to a legal intervention by Eppenhoff's lawyer, the entire executive board has resigned and relinquished all positions. The reason: a clear violation of the law during the board election on January 27, 1964, based on a retroactively added amendment to the statutes. Consequently, the board led by President Kurt Schönherr was never legally in office, rendering Eppenhoff's dismissal invalid. The successful football coach will resume training the professional players tomorrow. BVB will hold an extraordinary general meeting with a new board election on May 29, 1964, in the ballroom of Hoesch AG. Thus, an astonishing farce comes to an end, which has caused a lot of commotion throughout football Germany.

The alleged reason for Eppenhoff's removal from office after the Milan match: disrespectful remarks by the coach towards board members. Eppenhoff is highly regarded in Dortmund. Under his leadership, BVB became German champions in 1963, and there were significant victories in the European Cup against Lyn Oslo, Benfica Lisbon, and Dukla Prague. Within the team, the former Schalke champion player enjoys undivided respect and recognition. It has been widely known in Dortmund for some time that he had clashed with various board representatives.

May 5, 1966

Jubilation in Dortmund: BVB European Cup Winners against Liverpool

Hundreds of thousands lined the streets of Dortmund today, crowding onto the "Neuer Markt" (now Friedensplatz), as the freshly crowned winners of the European Cup Winners' Cup returned home after their magnificent 2-1 victory over FC Liverpool. The two goalscorers, Held and Libuda, were particularly celebrated, but Tilkowski, Cyliax, Redder, Kurrat, Paul, Assauer, Schmidt, Sturm, and Emmerich also repeatedly drew frenzied ovations. Mayor Dietrich Keuning welcomed the victorious heroes, while BVB President Steegmann and coach "Fischken" Multhaup expressed heartfelt thanks. Heading into the game at Hampden Park in Glasgow, the Black and Yellows were seen as clear underdogs.

Liverpool FC, hailing from the English Beatles' city, appeared to have the upper hand. However, the Borussians proved to be tactically astute, tenacious, and effective in their duels. Assauer, Sturm, Paul, and Tilkowski stood out as pillars of stability within the cohesive team. BVB had earned their place in the final through victories over La Valetta, Sofia, and Atletico Madrid. The foundation for the European Cup triumph was laid with the victory in the German Cup in 1965, which BVB secured with a 2-0 win against Alemannia Aachen. Notably, this final saw the first participation of a German Federal President, Dr. Heinrich Lübke.

July 20, 1966

'Emma' Scores 'Goal of the Century'

In the World Cup match against Spain, Borussia Dortmund's top scorer Lothar "Emma" Emmerich grabbed attention with an exceptionally spectacular goal. In the 39th minute of the last German group stage match, "Emma" raced down the left side to meet Overrath's through ball and hammered the ball past Spain's goalkeeper Iribar from an almost impossible angle into the top corner for the 1-1 equalizer. The goal was spontaneously hailed as the "Goal of the Century" by the assembled journalists.

The victory of the German national team (2-1) was sealed by Uwe Seeler, who had strongly advocated for Lothar Emmerich's inclusion to national team coach Helmut Schön ahead of the game. Alongside Emmerich, his teammates Hans Tilkowski and Sigi Held also featured in this World Cup match.

Season 1968/69

Dog Bites Rausch- Nigbur's Rendezvous with the Iceman

The games between BVB and FC Schalke have always been special treats. And occasionally, there are noteworthy incidents from the "sidelines." In the 1968/69 season, a German Shepherd belonging to the security personnel suddenly broke loose and, with a clear goal in mind, targeted the buttocks of Schalke player Friedel Rausch. To make matters worse, the dog wasn't wearing a muzzle. A bite, a scream. Fortunately, Rausch only suffered a flesh wound in a rather exposed area. A consulted veterinarian determined that the dog also suffered no lasting damage.

In the early 1970s, the brilliant Norbert Nigbur guarded the goal for the Royal Blues. On one occasion, as his team once again besieged the Dortmund goal, Nigbur positioned himself around the penalty area. The "ice cream seller in a wheelchair" in the Rote Erde probably thought Nigbur was feeling lonely. So, he suddenly entered the field, initially lingering near the Schalke goal, then strolling over to the bewildered Nigbur to offer him an ice cream. It was delicious.

Season 1968/69

Cabaret-Worthy 'Question Time'

In the late 1960s, BVB hired Hermann Lindemann as a coach, whose vanity was only surpassed by his poor eyesight. Therefore, BVB fans often saw him at their Black and Yellow matches without his glasses. After one match, the following dialogue unfolded between Lindemann and one of his defenders:

Lindemann: "Tell me, why was your direct opponent completely unmarked in front of our goal for a shot in the 85th minute?" The response: "That was a penalty, coach!"