Time travel of football, 2.11.1983: to succeed as spectacular escape the players of the GDR 2

Time travel of football, 2.11.1983: to succeed as spectacular escape the players of the GDR

36 years ago, Falko Götz and Dirk Schlegel took advantage of a shopping spree through Belgrade to flee into the old West Germany. They meet at Bayer Leverkusen. This November 2, 1983 is also a very special day for another player from CFB Dynamo.

The great short-term coach, Dettmar Cramer, once said, "Everything hangs somewhere, you can tear your hair on the backside, then tear your eyes." His beautiful observation of everyday life brings us back to the year 1983. Specifically, we return to the morning of November 2, 1983. At that time, the coach of BFC Dynamo, Jürgen Bogs, his team in Belgrade, They left half an hour free at the Heart of the Yugoslav capital shopping center, of course, under the severe eyes of travelers from the GDR. But the two young players Falko Götz and Dirk Schlegel manage to flee the observers of the Stasi.

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<p class=Coach Jürgen Bogs and officials at CFB tried to hide with a lie to escape.

(Photo: imago / Camera 4)

Through the back door of a store, they take the first steps of freedom. A few meters around the corner, panicked and wet with sweat, they entrusted twenty West Marks to a Yugoslav taxi driver. He should bring them by the quickest route to the Embassy of the Federal Republic. The man takes the money – because the journey takes little more than three minutes. So Götz and Schlegel are safe for the moment.

Fairy tales flying at the display

But the next 24 hours still have it. The message leaves the two hours of the afternoon to nearly four hundred kilometers from Zagreb by car – only at the exit of Belgrade. Diplomats use the first moments of uncertainty and confusion among CFB Dynamo officials to bring Falko Götz and Dirk Schlegel from the immediate area and wherever possible. Meanwhile, officials at CFB make a fairy tale for the team that afternoon: Götz and Schlegel are in police custody for being arrested on the fly. At some point during these intense hours, the UEFA Cup night game against Partizan is finally becoming more and more targeted. Desperately trying to return to Berlin for a little normality.

In Zagreb, Falko Götz and Dirk Schlegel receive new papers. Later, on the border with Austria, they must tell the officials that they were stolen. Completely. These are replacement documents of the Embassy. Of course, these papers are not the real names of Götz and Schlegel. So, during the match in Belgrade, they sit nervously in a car in Ljubljana. It should start at midnight a night train to Austria. And indeed, it succeeds: the two men in training pants arrive in Munich the next morning. The leak was successful. The fact that their decision to leave Yugoslavia as soon as possible was just revealed to both when we look at the display of a kiosk. Götz and Schlegel can be seen on the front page of the newspaper. In addition, the title in thick letters is: "The DDR player has fled!"

Andreas Thom tried his luck

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<p class=Andreas Thom is also settled in Leverkusen after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

(Photo: Imago / Norbert Schmidt)

Falko Götz is 21 years old at the time, Dirk Schlegel only a year older. And both players are lucky. About Jörg Berger, who had fled four years earlier, they arrive at Bayer Leverkusen. Five years later, Falko Götz won with Bayer the final of the UEFA Cup against Espanyol of Barcelona.

The coach, who hosted the two former players at CFB Dynamo in Leverkusen in the winter of 1983, called Dettmar Cramer. The first player to move to the Bundesliga after reunification in 1989 was Andreas Thom. He was from CFB Dynamo at the time. He had won five times under his coach Jürgen Bogs before the championship. Now, of course he went to Bayer Leverkusen. The first match that Andreas Thom had finished for his former RDA club since the start of the race was played on 2 November 1983. The man from Rüdersdorf, near Berlin, had slipped into the team today, as two Team members were walking in the morning. Belgrade had used its chance to escape.

Andreas Thom also tried his luck. Dynamo reached the next round of the Uefa Cup tonight and from then on, the striker, just 18, could no longer be considered a member of the BFC team. As Dettmar Cramer once said, as original as it is: "Everything stands somewhere, you can tear your hair off your buttocks, then water to the eyes." As it is true, as it is true!

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