A look at Michael Zorc’s legendary career with Borussia Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund are set to part ways with Michael Zorc as he steps down from his position as  Sporting Director at the end of the season.

With Borussia Dortmund set to face Hertha Berlin on the final matchday this coming Saturday, the game will not only close the chapter on the 2021-22 season for the club, but will also bring the career of one of Dortmund’s most storied figures to a close, at least in its current capacity.

Sporting Director Michael Zorc is set to step down and make way for the incoming Sebatian Kehl, and it will mark the end of an era for the club “Susi” has in many ways become synonymous with.

Michael Zorc, Jürgen Klopp and Hans Joachim Watzke celebrate Borussia Dortmund’s historic double (Photo by sampics/Corbis via Getty Images)

Zorc started his career with Borussia Dortmund all the way back in 1978 and played a total of 572 games with the club. Over that period, he became one of the club’s most prolific goalscorers and storied captains.

Zorc’s honors as a player include two Bundesliga titles, a DFB Pokal, and of course the famous UEFA Champions League victory in the 1996-97 season (with a win against Juventus in the final), which remains the club’s highest European achievement to date.

In addition to being one of the club’s most important historical figures on the pitch, in his capacity as Sporting Director, Michael Zorc has worked endlessly to uplift Borussia Dortmund and make the club as sustainable and efficient as possible over a period of its history where it could have all but disappeared from the landscape of European football.

Alongside Han-Joachim Watzke, Zorc worked to weather financial crises, and helped achieve three Bundesliga titles and three DFB-Pokals during his reign as Sporting Director.

Michael Zorc has enjoyed 44 memorable years at Borussia Dortmund. (Photo by Jörg Schüler/Getty Images)

The work he endeavoured to put into building this club up has seen it experience one of its most successful periods in history. And despite Bayern Munich’s general dominance over the last decade, he has managed to keep them relatively competitive by orchestrating some of the most prominent transfers in Borussia Dortmund’s history.

Perfection cannot be expected from any human being however, and Zorc’s time as sporting director did see him make a few mistakes in terms of both choosing coaches and players. But there is no question that Borussia Dortmund would not have been where they are now without him steering the ship.

Incoming Sporting Director Sebastian Kehl, who has been with the club since 2002, has worked closely with Michael Zorc and regards him as a “mentor”:

“[Michael Zorc is] a great person who has played a major role in shaping the history of Borussia Dortmund in various roles. He has also been a very important contact person and mentor for me in recent years.”

Borussia Dortmund CEO Hans Joachim Watzke also praised Zorc for the impact he has had on the club over the course of his time with Die Scwarzgelben:

“BVB owes Michael a huge debt of gratitude. He has had the greatest career of any Borussian. 44 years at his club in his city – that’s as good as it gets.”

Michael Zorc leaves behind a legacy at Borussia Dortmund that will likely go unmatched as the club’s history continues to unfold. His overall dedication and love for the Black and Yellows has left a lasting imprint on the hearts and minds of those who call this club their own; an imprint that will never be forgotten nor taken for granted by the Dortmund faithful.

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