Last week something funny happened. There was a press conference about Jürgen Klopp, the manager of Borussia Dortmund, who was about to announce that he was leaving the club. That’s not the funny bit!
Ben Bloom, the Telegraph sports commentator had the task to comment live as the conference was broadcast. You can read the whole article here, but I will quote some of the funniest ( for me, anyway) comments:
Right we have a slight issue… they are speaking in German and my GCSE in the subject isn’t much help. What I can deduce is that the bloke currently speaking (I’m assuming he’s the Dortmund chief exec or something) genuinely sounds like someone has died. He’s properly choked. Oh he just said “fantastisch”. I’m guessing he wasn’t describing Klopp’s decision to leave the club.
Why can’t I speak German???????
I’d love to tell you what Klopp is saying. He is saying a lot. But I can understand precisely none of it. So here’s a photo of him pouring some water instead:
I have a couple of translations coming through.
Klopp: “I chose this time to announce it because in the last years some player decisions were made late and you couldn’t react.”
“It’s not that I am tired, I don’t have any contact with another club but I don’t plan to take a year off either.”
I’m afraid I cannot verify how correct those sentences is. I’m rapidly realising that I am as close to useless right now as I have ever been in my life.
I am going to email my old German teacher Dr Plow after this and apologise.
I am genuinely sorry about this. I realise this is highly unprofessional. Don’t tell my boss I can’t speak German. He thinks I’m translating this press conference word for word.
Afterwards Ben sent out tweets like:
But what do you do if you don’t find your GCSE very interesting or if you are looking for other text to read apart from your textbook?
If you are interested in football, then how about finding out about German football teams, like Borussia Dortmund!
There is the BVB website where you can find out about forthcoming games or subscribe to their newsletter etc… (You can also read it in English). They have an android app which lets you keep track of their games. You can even become members, which would get you some goodies and the chance to get tickets early.
Membership, of course, isn’t free. A year’s membership would cost you 62 Euro – that would only be useful for somebody who’s really keen and might even want to watch some games.
But there is enough free information about them (or any other German football club) for you to read, find out, learn about football in Germany and practise your German at the same time. So, check out their website or find them on Facebook or Twitter and combine your love for football with your love for learning German!
As for Ben Bloom, he succeeded without knowing any German – a very lucky man ☺