A second-half masterclass from Marco Reus inspired Borussia Dortmund to seal a narrow 1-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach on Tuesday.
Borussia Dortmund beat their soon-to-be head coach Marco Rose-led Borussia Monchengladbach 1-0 to book their place in the semi-final of the DFB Pokal.
It was a fiery encounter as the hosts Gladbach tried to intimidate Dortmund with their physical approach. The move worked to an extent as the Black and Yellows had no answer to the 4-4-2 high press that saw the home side appearing as the better side throughout the first half, with chances coming few and far between.
Things did change in the second half, as Dortmund employed a traditional 4-3-3. The presence of the additional midfielder made it easier for them to navigate the ball through the Gladbach press. They eventually found the back of the net in the 66th minute, thanks to an ice-cold finish from Jadon Sancho.
The Foals did provide a late push for the equaliser, but an effort from Stefan Lainer just over the bar was the closest they could come to finding the back of the net. And here, at The Hard Tackle, we will take a closer look at how these two teams performed in this heated encounter at Borussia Park on Tuesday.
Tobias Sippel: 7.5/10
Tobias Sippel made a couple of good saves, including the one to deny Erling Haaland in the second half. A good performance in between the sticks.
Stefan Lainer: 7.5/10
It was an eventful game for Stefan Lainer, who provided decent support going forward from the right-hand side. Had a last gasp effort that was just wide of the mark.
Matthias Ginter: 7/10
Matthias Ginter remained solid in the Gladbach defence, using his imposing presence to keep Haaland quiet for the most part. A decent display from the ex-Dortmund man.
Nico Elvedi: 7/10
Nico Elvedi had a couple of nervy moments but also did well to remain calm and composed in the Gladbach backline. A vital cog in the build-up as well.
Ramy Bensebaini: 7/10
Ramy Bensebaini did not do too much on the left-hand side and might have been lucky to get away with the fall, just before Haaland’s disallowed goal. Got into several heated moments. Did have an attempt on goal, but it was saved.
Good night to everyone not called Ramy Bensebaini
— 𝒥𝒶𝓋𝒶𝓃 (@javan1909) March 2, 2021
Christoph Kramer: 7/10
Christoph Kramer was a vital cog in Gladbach’s 4-4-2 high press, with the midfielder remaining defensively solid. However, he was a liability in possession.
Florian Neuhaus: 6/10
Florian Neuhaus struggled to impose his authority in the middle of the park. Although he did look okay in possession, the creativity was not there. Also lost the ball that led to Dortmund’s counter-attacking goal.
Jonas Hofmann: 6/10
Jonas Hofmann could not do much on the right flank, in terms of creativity. While Gladbach did look solid, the penetration just was not there at the end.
Lars Stindl: 5/10
It was a bad day at the office for Lars Stindl, who could not find himself a good scoring opportunity. Might have preferred a bit more freedom in the final third.
Marcus Thuram: 6.5/10
Marcus Thuram’s strength and pace on the flanks made him a crucial outlet for Gladbach. However, the Frenchman lacked consistency in his game, providing very little to the proceedings in terms of penetration. Did score a goal but it was ruled out.
Oscar Wendt on the disallowed goal by marcus thuram https://t.co/KkZe6Np7RX
— Woscar Endt (@woscarendt) March 2, 2021
Alassane Plea: 5/10
Alassane Plea continued his poor run of form with yet another average display in the number nine slot. One could argue Breel Embolo would have been a better option.
Valentino Lazaro: 6.5/10
Valentino Lazaro was brought in for Hofmann to provide more dynamism in the Gladbach attack. Did his job well but it was not enough to find the equaliser.
Denis Zakaria: 6.5/10
Offered more dynamism and quality in possession during the late stages of the game. Looked like a threat.
Breel Embolo: 6/10
Breel Embolo replaced Thuram during the final phase of the game, but it was too little too late.
Hannes Wolf: 6/10
A late replacement for the ineffective Stindl.
Marwin Hitz: 7/10
Marwin Hitz made one excellent save to deny Bensebaini, as the Swiss international continued his marvellous form in between the sticks for Dortmund.
He deserves all the credits for the clean sheet. Always looked solid, distributed the ball well, no loose passes, and that save from the Bensebaini thunderbolt. https://t.co/WQTbhA3t9D
— Aritra1909 (@IndianReus) March 2, 2021
Mateu Morey: 8/10
Mateu Morey started the game poorly, struggling against the strength of Thuram. However, the defender settled in brilliantly, becoming a source of constant threat on the flanks.
Emre Can: 7.5/10
Emre Can was once again solid at the heart of the Dortmund backline. In addition, the former Liverpool man looked smooth and confident in possession, evading Gladbach’s high press on numerous occasions.
Mats Hummels: 7.5/10
Mats Hummels had a great game, especially with the ball at his feet as he created an excellent opportunity for Haaland. Got beaten badly by Thuram once.
Raphael Guerreiro: N/A
Raphael Guerreiro’s night was cut short after picking up an injury inside five minutes. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Jude Bellingham: 7.5/10
Jude Bellingham fought brilliantly once again in the Dortmund midfield. His aggression, work-ethic and mentality characterised his team’s performance in the second half.
Neuhaus can stay at Gladbach, Dahoud and Bellingham clear
— ♱ (@rodrigo7i) March 2, 2021
Thomas Delaney: 7/10
Thomas Delaney was not as impressive as Bellingham, but he offered additional defensive support for his teammates. Had a more stable second half.
Marco Reus: 8.5/10
Marco Reus had a mixed game by his lofty standards. He was too passive in the first half but an inspired second half display saw him become the creator in chief for the visitors. He notably created the goal for Haaland that was ruled out, before eventually registering the assist for the Sancho goal with a sumptuous pass.
Marco Reus hasn’t been the same since pic.twitter.com/E8fvntTkcA
— Max (@ClinicalCoco) March 2, 2021
Mahmoud Dahoud: 7/10
Mahmoud Dahoud had a difficult first half, often misplacing his passes. However, a change of dynamics saw him produce some excellent forward passes. His bright display was ruined by a late red card.
Jadon Sancho: 6.5/10
Jadon Sancho had a quiet game for the most part as he struggled to impose his authority in the final third. However, he deserves credit for taking his chance in the second half.
Erling Haaland: 6/10
Erling Haaland had a poor game considering his high standards. The Norwegian missed multiple scoring opportunities, while one of his efforts was ruled out due to offside. An unfortunate night for the young attacking sensation.
Nico Schulz: 7.5/10
Nico Schulz replaced Guerreiro within five minutes and ended up having an excellent game. He initiated the counter-attack that led to the Dortmund goal while also working hard on the left flank.
Thorgan Hazard: 6.5/10
Thorgan Hazard offered some freshness in the Dortmund attack after coming on for Sancho midway through the second half.
Dan-Axel Zagadou: N/A
A late replacement for Bellingham. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.