If you have ever wondered what the expression, ‘Revenge is a dish best served cold’ means, you could well get an excellent indication on Saturday if Borussia Dortmund clinch the Bundesliga title at Bayern Munich’s expense. The saying generally means that vengeance is often more satisfying if it is not exacted immediately. That is exactly what BVB sporting director Sebastian Kehl will be experiencing as he finally exacts revenge on Hasan Salihamidzic.
This story goes all the way back to the opening weekend of the 2006-07 Bundesliga season and Bayern Munich were hosting Borussia Dortmund at the Allianz Arena. In the 19th minute Bayern midfielder Hasan Salihamidzic slid into a tackle with BVB’s Sebastian Kehl with his studs up catching his opponent flush on the knee.
Kehl suffered an eight centimetre cut, was forced off and had to go to hospital to undergo surgery. There were later complications and all told the Dortmund midfielder missed 15 months of career as a result of the horror tackle. Salihamidzic wasn’t even booked for the challenge. Kehl’s future knee problems that blighted his career all stem from this incident he feels.
“Anger? I don’t think Hasan wanted to hurt me that badly” he revealed later. “In this situation he wanted to….how do you put it nicely?…set an example.”
Salihamidzic phoned Kehl to apologize the day after the game and Bayern took him under their wing to protect him from the backlash. Now however it is time for Kehl to exact his revenge, not on the pitch as midfield rivals, but off it as sporting directors of their respective clubs.
That Kehl and Salihamidzic aren’t on particularly friendly terms will come as a surprise to absolutely nobody and while Kehl probably will not admit it publicly, there must be a part of him (his knee at least) that will take great satisfaction from Dortmund beating Bayern to the title and seeing the pictures of Bayern sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic squirming uncomfortably in his seat at the Rhein-Energie Stadion as the realisation sinks in that the Rekordmeister have been usurped.
Revenge is indeed a dish best served cold. ‘Another helping Herr. Salihamidzic?’
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