HALLERluja! German newspaper Bild carried a pun on the headline after Dortmund’s victory over Augsburg.
After the pressure and fear of losing the chance to win the title again, Dortmund’s fans were finally able to say “Hallelujah” when witnessing the brilliance of Sebastien Haller. A strange and perhaps never-forgotten season of the Ivorian striker, when he experienced all the ups and downs of his life.
A year ago, Dortmund fans eagerly awaited the debut of Sebastien Haller to banish nostalgia for Erling Haaland. Haller may not be able to match Haaland in terms of class, but at least he has had a brilliant season with Ajax Amsterdam. The second player in history after Marco Van Basten to score four goals in his first Champions League game, and the only player to score in seven consecutive matches in Europe’s most prestigious competition. That was enough for Dortmund to break the team’s transfer record to bring Haller to Signal Iduna Park.
But such short-Tay gang joy. When Haller had not even played a minute for Dortmund, he contracted testicular cancer. For more than half a year, Haller struggled with death, Dortmund was still flying high in the Bundesliga, and people thought he had drifted into oblivion. But then at the most important moment of the season, Haller became the savior of the yellow and black shirt team.
Missed opportunities, regretful head hugs. The match at WWK last weekend may have witnessed a familiar scenario when Dortmund threw away the opportunity to touch the silver trophy because of a lack of bravery at key moments. But in the end that scenario did not happen when Haller became a superhero to save the dream of the Ruhr football team. In the moment when the No. 9 striker scored a brace against Augsburg, people saw the instincts of a true goalscorer, and more than that, the bravery of a man who returned from the dead.
That bravery makes people admire and think of the image of Chadwick Boseman, the actor who brought the image of Black Panther – Black Panther to immortality. Both Haller and Boseman represent African pride, both fought bravely with cancer and inspired so many people. Aubameyang has also cosplayed Black Panther when celebrating his time with Dortmund, but now perhaps it is Haller who best embodies the indomitable spirit of the Black Panther at Signal Iduna Park.
After being defeated and dethroned by Killmonger, Black Panther returned arrogantly and declared, “As you can see, I am not dead!” (As you can see, I’m not dead yet!)
After winning the illness and returning to the field, Haller scored the first goal for Dortmund on the day of International Cancer Prevention Day (February 4) as an affirmation: “As you can see, Sebastien Halller is not dead !”.
Haller was luckier than Boseman when he defeated death, and now he and his teammates are only one step away from the threshold of heaven. The final match against Mainz 05 will again be a match to test Dortmund’s bravery. The pressure will be even greater, the atmosphere will be even denser, but in return they will have the support of the home fans in the stands and a true warrior on the field.
People still talk about the perfect ending of Marco Reus in the love story of more than 10 years with Dortmund, but it would be remiss not to mention the story of Sebastien Haller and the inspirations he brings to those who are lacking. good luck on the hospital bed. Haller’s victory will be their victory, and Haller’s voice will also be their voice.
Dortmund’s silver trophy will be a beautiful ending to Marco Reus’ decade-long love story. As for Haller, it will be his strong statement with cancer patients to the god of death: “As you can see. We are not dead!”.