New Evidence Surfaces Into Bundesliga Doping Scandal

German broadcaster SWR has claimed that it has received more evidence in doping allegations against Bundesliga clubs VfB Stuttgart and SC Freiburg, in the 1970s and 1980s.

Joachim Löw

Joachim Löw, Germany's World Cup winning coach, played for both sides at the time in question. Löw distanced himself from the allegations whilst condemning doping in sport. The doping allegations were also denied by former Stuttgart coach Hans-Jürgen Sundermann, who coached the club between 1976 and 1979 and again from 1980 to 1982. On its club website, Stuttgart made a statement to confirm Dr. Klümper was at no stage team doctor at the club.

Earlier this year, a special commission investigating the use of performance enhancing drugs in connection with the University of Freiburg disclosed that players from the Bundesliga club VfB Stuttgart and then second division side, SC Freiburg were using anabolic steroids in the 1970s and 80s. It was also revealed by a two-page statement from the commission that doping was supported in an organized way by BDR, Germany's national cycling association, between 1975 and approximately 1980.

A report by SWR disclosed that the broadcaster has managed to obtain first-hand evidence in documents from the office of Freiburg prosecutor. These documents, coming from a court case against Armin Klümper (a German sports physician and university lecturer) in 1984, show the supply of various substances by Klümper. The sports medicine expert is believed to be involved partly for doping West German athletes during the 1970s.

The SWR report states Klümper was apparently primarily involved with Bundesliga club Stuttgart and there was only a single shipment of anabolic steroids to SC Freiburg, the other football club involved in the scandal, in 1979. The broadcaster report also disclosed that many handwritten invoices were found in the documents that are addressed to the Stuggart club on which drugs and their respective amounts are listed in detail. It was also disclosed that these deliveries included Megagrisevit, a well-known and banned doping agent and steroid. The deliveries had a complete value of more than 117,000 German marks ($93,000 in today's currency). SWR also reported that the name of Gerhard Mayer-Vorfelder, the former VfB Stuttgart club president, was also on many delivery invoices that hinted the club would have possibly known the doping practices.

Mayer-Vorfelder said during the indictment against Klümper in 1984 that it was very important for him to make sure that no banned substances were delivered to the club. Mayer-Vorfelder also said he was apparently assured by a club physiotherapist that this was not the case.

German football is no stranger to controversies. West Germany's national soccer team goalkeeper Toni Schumacher lost his post as captain in 1987 amid controversy over his book about drug use among West German players. In his ghost-written book, 'Starting Whistle,' Schumacher alleged widespread drug use is prevalent in the first division of the West German soccer league. Schumacher revealed in his book that doping has a long tradition in the West German team and he went on to add that his teammates used to gulp cough syrup with a high content of ephedrine before important games and he himself tried the drug Captagon.

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