Dummies' guide to Borussia Dortmund player names

With the German giants paying the southern Malaysian state of Johor a visit this week, Darren Goon has come up with a pronunciation guide for some of the trickier names on their roster…

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Borussia Dortmund might be famous for their quick pressing style of play, as well as their slew of talented attacking players (Shinji Kagawa, Marco Reus, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang), but they’re also known for having players with notoriously difficult names to pronounce. Ahead of their friendly match against Johor Darul Ta’zim on July 9th, this guide will hopefully help you address them correctly, should you find yourself fortunate enough to, say, bump into a BVB player in a hotel elevator.  

Marco Reus

Let’s begin with the obvious candidate. With his prominence on the international and European arenas, it should come as no surprise that Marco Reus’ surname is not, in fact, pronounced “Reuse” (as in, “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”).  

Correct pronunciation:  Mar-co Royce, like that famous luxury car brand.

Roman Weidenfeller

A Dortmund legend, Weidenfeller has been with the club for 13 years, making over 300 appearances. The 34-year-old was also the oldest German goalkeeper to debut for the national side, only making his first appearance in November 2013. He was the back-up goalkeeper for Manuel Neuer as Germany won the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Correct pronunciation: Roh-mun Vai-dun-feller

Ciro Immobile

Having scored 22 league goals in the 2013-14 season for Torino, Italian striker Ciro Immobile earned a move to Dortmund last season, but failed to scale similar heights. He scored just three Bundesliga goals, which led to numerous puns about his mobility.  

Correct pronunciation: Chee-ro Ee-mo-bee-lay

Neven Subotić

This 26-year-old Serbian centre-back actually represented the United States’ Under-17 and Under-20 teams, having moved to Salt Lake City as a child. A scout then discovered him and brought him to Germany, where he signed for Mainz 05 and, shortly after, Borussia Dortmund, where he would win the Bundesliga and the DFB-Pokal.

Correct pronunciation: Neh-vehn Soo-bo-tee-ch

Nuri Şahin

This Turkish midfielder re-signed for Dortmund in 2013 after disappointing spells with Real Madrid and Liverpool, but was sidelined for much of last season due to injury. Interestingly, his surname actually means “hawk” in Turkish.

Correct pronunciation: Noo-ree Sha-hin