Dortmund clear another hurdle to set up ‘title-deciding’ Klassiker

Dortmund clear another hurdle to set up ‘title-deciding’ Klassiker

For the first half of this season Dortmund’s title push looked like it would let down by their leaky defence and inefficiency in front of goal but this afternoon’s win at Wolfsburg showed that they are indeed capable of ‘winning ugly’. The home side came into the match with a clear game plan and were content to allow their visitors the lion’s share of possession. Both Wout Weghorst and Daniel Ginczek were deployed as defensive forwards, pressing and harrying the Dortmund midfield and offering little in the offensive third. Dortmund control the early stages without creating any particularly clear-cut chances until Achraf Hakimi found Thorgan Hazard in the box on the half hour mark. The Belgian’s low cross evaded the right boot of Erling Haaland but found Raphaël Guerreiro arriving late at the back post. The wing-back had been one of the best performers in last week’s victory over Shcalke, scoring two, and he calmly slotted the ball into the Wolfsburg net. It was no more that Dortmund deserved and they coasted to half-time without breaking a sweat. But any notion that this game was over was disrupted by the news that Mats Hummels had been substituted due to a re-occurrence of a foot injury that he had picked up last week. Hummels has been one of the key figures in Dortmund’s defensive solidity this year and would be a big loss if he were to miss an extended period. On in his place came Emre Can, himself only ...
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