Sven Bender leaves Borussia Dortmund to join twin brother Lars at Bayer Leverkusen

The defender could play alongside his brother and Bayer 04 captain this season.

Sven Bender leaves Borussia Dortmund to join twin brother Lars at Bayer Leverkusen
Bender has called time on an eight-year stay in Dortmund. (Photo: Getty Images / TF-Images)

Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen have completed the signing of defender Sven Bender from Borussia Dortmund with the 28-year-old putting pen to paper on a four-year contract.

Bender twins reunited in the Bundesliga

Bender will link up with his twin brother and current Bayer 04 captain Lars Bender this season, and it is the first time the two have played for the same club since their time with TSV 1860 Munich.

The German can play either as a central defender or a defensive midfielder and may be the man to replace Ömer Toprak, who agreed to move to Dortmund back in February once last season had come to an end.

Leverkusen's Sporting Director Rudi Völler told the club's official website that he is "very happy that Sven has decided to sign" and described the defender as an "extraordinarily experienced and versatile player".

Völler went on to hail Bender's "quality and leadership ability" as traits that will "do a lot of good for our young team" in future seasons.

Leverkusen boss Heiko Herrlich said that his new defender "is not just a high-quality signing as a player" but is also an "ideal leader both on and off the pitch", which Herrlich added is "just like his brother Lars".

Herrlich could not hide his delight while describing the former Dortmund man as "the type of player that every team needs", before saying that it is "great to have both Benders in one team."

The Bender twins are now on the same side in the Bundesliga after years of facing each other.

Bayer 04's persistence a major pull for the defender

The player himself also spoke following the announcement as he called time on "eight wonderful years at Dortmund", describing the offer to join his brother at Leverkusen as "particularly attractive."

Bender spoke of "how much at home Lars feels here" and added that the fact Bayer 04 "worked really hard to sign me" and "really wanted me to help achieve ambitious targets" which were major factors in his decision to make the switch.

Bender began his career with 1860 Munich and made 85 appearances for the club's second and first-team before moving to Dortmund in 2009. The 28-year-old went on to make 224 appearances and won two consecutive Bundesliga titles in 2010/11 and 2011/12.

He also won the DFB Pokal twice with the Black-Yellows in addition to two DFL-Supercups, while also reaching the Champions League final in 2013 despite their Wembley defeat at the hands of Bayern Munich.

Bender has also been capped seven times by Germany on the international stage and won a silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.


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