Simon Terrode and VfL Bochum . . . a perfect marriage?

Football is a simple sport. You score, you are good, and you create attention. Attention is something good for some people, but it always has a disadvantage in it for other people. Who knows that better than a club in the second Bundesliga?

VfL Bochum has had better days, no doubt. There is a famous song for this football club, which was invented by its own supporters.

“Wir steigen auf, wir steigen ab und zwischendurch UEFA-Cup”
(“We get promoted, we get relegated, and now and then UEFA-Cup”)

West Germany is His Territory

After some years of trouble, the third wheel in the Ruhrgebiet – after Dortmund and Schalke – seems to have found better times. Promotion may be hard to realise, but it is still possible. One reason for the good results of the last 18 months is 27 years old, was born in Bocholt (about 80 kilometres away from Bochum), and is one of the best strikers in the second Bundesliga.

Simon Terrode began his professional career at MSV Duisburg. He also played a half-year for Fortuna Düsseldorf and two years for 1. FC Köln. His best time before his current run, though, was in the German capital. In 93 matches between 2011 and 2014, he scored 25 goals for 1. FC Union Berlin. In 2014, he signed for VfL Bochum. In one-and-a-half seasons, he scored 32 goals in 56 matches for Bochum. Is he not a guy for the Bundesliga?

VfL Bochum
VfL Bochum













A Hat-Trick against Mönchenglabach

Borussia Mönchengladbach, who will have to face Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, played against VfL Bochum last weekend. It was kind of a final rehearsal for the Fohlenelf before the start of the Bundesliga.

They lost 2:5!

The first half ended with 2:1 for Borussia Mönchengladbach. Ibrahima Traore (19.) and Lars Stindl (41.) scored for Borussia. Janik Haberer (25.) scored for VfL Bochum. Simon Terrode was substituted in the second half, but managed to impress plenty in scoring a hat trick. You can say that it was just a friendly match or just a test. But this performance really underlined the potential of the main striker of VfL Bochum.

Bochum again has Potential

The question occurs why Simon Terrode does not play in the Bundesliga? Since 2011 he scored (combined FC Union Berlin and VfL Bochum) 44 goals, which is no doubt a good average. Last summer, Hertha BSC and FSV Mainz 05 wanted to sign Terrode, but the deals were not finalized. It was a matter of money. Rumours said that Mainz and Berlin only wanted to pay about 5 million Euro. VfL Bochum wanted a two digit number. Although Terrode’s advisor said the aim for him must be the Bundesliga, he stayed in Bochum.

For how long will he remain, though? It is hard to say.

Right now VfL Bochum is sixth in the second Bundesliga table, with only a five-points deficit to third. The performance at the home stadium on Castroper Straße is better than in two recent seasons, when they face near relegation.

RB Leipzig and SC Freiburg are locked in a duel for the automatic-promotion spots. After that, there is a glut of clubs – 1. FC Nürnberg, FC St. Pauli, Eintracht Braunschweig, and VfL Bochum. It is not impossible, but VfL Bochum cannot endure another funk. Between September and December, they won twice, beating Greuther Fürth (0:5) and SC Paderborn (4:0). Between October 18 and December 11, they went winless in seven matches. For a club wanting to reach promotion, it is not enough.

Terrode’s equaliser against St. Pauli from this season.

Too Big for the Bundesliga?

Simon Terrode is, without doubt, the star of VfL Bochum. Everybody would be happy if he would stay.

There are a few reasons that he could stay another season. Right now, the club has good management with Christian Hochstätter (ex- of Borussia Mönchengladbach). Coach Gertjan Verbeeck developed the club to a new and more-professional level. The hard times are over. ‘Promotion’ no longer sounds like a fairy tale in the land between the rewirpowerSTADION and the Ruhr river. The team has future potential.

Another reason the striker may keep the blue-and-white jersey: maybe he is just too big for the Bundesliga. Could this be an answer? Maybe! Simon Terrode is a so-called “klassischer Mittelstürmer”. His moving range is not compatible with the system many Bundesliga-clubs prefer right now. Some clubs perform without a classical striker and prefer flexible and mobile players like Yunus Malli (FSC Mainz 05). Others – for example Hertha BSC or Hamburger SV – already have good strikers like Vedad Ibisevic, Salomon Kalou, or Pierre-Michel Lasogga. I could imagine Simon Terrode playing for a club like Mainz, Hamburg, or Berlin. He has that potential for those clubs. There simply is no place for him right now.

On August 30, Gertjan Verbeek said in a pre-match press conference, “When you are happy in your marriage, you do not change your wife.” One day later, at the end of the transfer period, it was certain that Terrode would stay for at least another year.

It just fits: the classical striker “Terrode” and the classical football club “VfL Bochum”.

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Dennis Liedschulte

Dennis works as a journalist and author of fictional novels in Germany. He is a regular visitor of the German Bundesliga. He worked for several newspapers and online magazines and reports directly from Germany for Follow at @NummerSieben7