How Andreas Luthe experienced a football miracle in his last game

How Andreas Luthe experienced a football miracle in his last game

Goalkeeper Andreas Luthe returned to his hometown club VfL Bochum six months ago. His job: to be a reliable substitute keeper. Then came the relegation play-offs – and the 37-year-old made an incredible comeback.

After the final whistle, tears ran down Andreas Luthe’s face. What the Bochum goalkeeper had experienced in his old age in the second leg of the Bundesliga relegation was so emotionally overwhelming that it burst out of him for a moment. One of the Bochum fans who had run onto the pitch in the Düsseldorf stadium after this incredible game patted Luthe on the head in sympathy. A short time later, Luthe was thrown into the air by his teammates: they celebrated their keeper, who had been a reliable support during the dramatic 120 minutes and had saved a shot in the subsequent penalty shootout.

What happened that evening in Düsseldorf’s Merkur-Spiel Arena was probably the most exciting relegation match since it was reintroduced in the 2008/09 season. Bochum had lost the first leg at home 0-3, so their chances of staying in the league were slim. But the team equalized the result and narrowly won the penalty shootout 6-5 after a goalless extra time. In the end, Düsseldorf player Takashi Uchino lost his nerve and thundered the last penalty into the night sky, saving Bochum.

Relegation: Maximilian Wittek and Felix Passlack from VfL Bochum celebrate their stay in the Bundesliga after their victory over Fortuna Düsseldorf

Reactions to Bochum’s relegation miracle: “Those who are said to be dead live longer!”

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Andreas Luthe should be a reliable substitute keeper

It was one of those miraculous games that lifts the winner to the skies and leaves the loser devastated. While Uchino had to be consoled for minutes by Fortuna coach Daniel Thioune, Luthe gradually understood what had just happened: “It feels unreal to me. I actually only had one job when I came here in January – to be backup. I don’t know what to say about being able to help out again today.”he said into the microphone of Sat1 presenter Matthias Opdenhövel.

Luthe only returned to his hometown club VfL Bochum during the winter break, for whom he had already played from 2006 to 2016. His career took him to FC Augsburg, Union Berlin and 1. FC Kaiserslautern and now back to Castroper Strasse. Bochum were looking for a solid replacement for regular goalkeeper Manuel Riemann. But Riemann was so abusive towards his own teammates after the defeat in the last Bundesliga game against Werder Bremen that coach Heiko Butscher threw him out of the squad. It was a risky decision because Riemann is one of the team’s pillars in sporting terms.

Suddenly Andreas Luthe is back in goal in the relegation

So it happened that Luthe suddenly found himself between the posts. He had played a total of three games this season. Two for Kaiserslautern in the first half of the season, one for Bochum in the second half. And now the relegation. “I’ve been a professional for about 16 years now. In the end, I was just functioning. You do what you’ve learned your whole life, rattle off everything. I think the people on the outside were more excited than I was. I just wanted to do my part for the team”he said after the happy ending for his Bochum team.

For Luthe, there was only one thing left to do other than celebrate with the team. He announced his retirement at the microphone: “Today was my last game in professional football, I will not extend my contract again.” You can’t blame him. It couldn’t be more fitting. “This is no longer good for my heart, I also have to think about my health. I have had an incredibly great career and I have so much to thank all the people who have paved the way for me and supported me. I think now is the right time to say thank you to my club by staying in the league and then it was nice.”

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Source: Stern

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