On Thursday, Borussia Dortmund confirmed defender Neven Subotić has been allowed to hold transfer talks. The Serbian is has joined French club Saint-Étienne.
DONE DEAL: Neven Subotic has joined Saint-Etienne on a free transfer after cancelling his contract with Borussia Dortmund, signing a two-and-a-half-year contract. pic.twitter.com/wRrSNjOPHl
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) January 25, 2018
Subotić ‘s time in Dortmund is one that qualifies as a fairy tale story, at least to some degree. Brought in by manager Jürgen Klopp from Mainz in June 2008, he was not only able to form a formidable partnership with Mats Hummels but also managed to forge a lovely relationship with the BVB faithful. Despite not being a player who grew up in the city or supporting the Black and Yellows as a kid, he understood what it meant to play for BVB. He always wore his heart on his sleeve. That is why he is adored by Dortmund fans everywhere.
Subotić ‘s best seasons in Dortmund were from 2010 to 2013. In that time he helped his team to back-to-back Bundesliga trophies, a DFB Pokal triumph and a Champions League Final. He completed the ball playing and somewhat adventurous Hummels very well. After the Champions League final, we were only able to see this partnership on few occasions. In fact, it would be almost a year and a half for the back 4 that started at Wembley to play at the same time.
Injuries to both Subotić and Hummels in the 2013/14 season meant that they couldn’t continue their partnership at the heart of the Dortmund defense. Sokratis was signed from Bremen in the summer of 2013 and after Klopp’s departure, it was the Greek CB who was preferred to Subotic. With less playing time the Serbian wasn’t able to regain his old form.
Last season he played for Cologne on loan. He was part of the Billy Goats side that managed to make history by qualifying for a European competition after 25 years. He returned to BVB in the summer but started a handful of games. The signing of Manuel Akanji will further decrease his playing time and so the Serbian is saying farewell to the Signal Iduna Park.
Subotić is not only a wonderful player but also a humanitarian who always tried to help other people. As indicated in the two-part series of the ‘Neven Subotić – More than just a footballer’ piece, he was involved in voluntary work with his foundation.
He is now moving to Saint-Étienne, which looks an ideal fit for him. The French club is known for its passionate fans. Subotić will have no problem identifying with them. It is being reported that he has signed a two and a half year contract with the Ligue 1 side.
I am certain the 29-year-old will look back at his time in Dortmund with happiness and pride. In total, he has made 165 appearances for BVB from 2008-2018.
I think I speak for all Dortmund fans when I say:
Thank You, Neven! Thank You for being a great player and a great person! Thank You for the wonderful games and unforgettable trophies. You will always be a Dortmund hero. I am sure you will bring a lot of joy and success to your new club.
And to quote BVB’s official twitter account!
“ #DankeNeven- for your leg, your cheers, your goals and the celebrations in the district!”
Farewell Neven Subotić! Echte Liebe!