Bender explains decision to join Leverkusen

Sven Bender

Recent Bayer 04 Leverkusen recruit Sven Bender says he joined the club to experience a new challenge, and because he feels more valued at the BayArena.

The 28-year-old decided to leave Borussia Dortmund after eight seasons of service. In recent times the player had become starved of playing time, making just six appearances for BVB in 2016/17.

The versatile defensive midfielder or defender also denied he signed for Bayer on a four-year deal in order to join his twin brother and team captain, Lars Bender, with Die Werkself.

He told the Bundesliga’s official website, “After eight years, I can’t say I was unhappy in Dortmund. I know what I had with that club, but there was one thing which I was no longer doing so often: getting out on the pitch.

“For me, it was purely a sporting decision. The prospects are simply better for me in Leverkusen. Some people had asked me about that. The saying goes ‘New coach, new chance.’ But I had already made this decision.

“I really wanted to try something new, a new challenge. It had absolutely nothing to do with my brother. Rather, I was interested in finding a club in which I would be needed, in which I would be valued.”