Erling Haaland, Donyell Malen & Marco Reus struggled as Borussia Dortmund fell to a 2-1 defeat to SC Freiburg on Saturday.
Marco Rose suffered his first Bundesliga defeat as a Borussia Dortmund coach as Die Schwarzgelben suffered a 2-1 loss at the hands of SC Freiburg on Saturday.
It was an embarrassing performance from the visiting side, who were completely outclassed by Freiburg. Indeed, Christian Streich’s masterful use of narrow shape and clever scouting of the opposition saw the hosts deliberately offering spaces to wide full-backs of Dortmund who were unable to make use of it.
The space left in the wider areas allowed Freiburg to concentrate on Dortmund’s creative midfielders including Mahmoud Dahoud, Marco Reus and Giovanni Reyna, all of who had disappointing matches.
SCF took the lead in the sixth minute through an exceptional free-kick from Vincenzo Grifo. The lead was doubled early in the second half as Roland Sallai scored from close range. Dortmund did try to fight back, with Yannick Keitel scoring an own goal around the hour mark. But it was not enough as the hosts remained resilient.
Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will rate the Borussia Dortmund players in their disappointing defeat to SC Freiburg at the Dreisamstadion this weekend.
Gregor Kobel: 6/10
Gregor Kobel was completely beaten by Grifo’s exceptional free-kick early on in the game and could not have done anything to keep out the close-range strike from Roland Sallai. Made one good save in the second half, but it was a frustrating game for the new goalkeeper, whose search for a first clean sheet in Dortmund colours continues.
Felix Passlack: 3/10
Another disastrous game for Felix Passlack. He provides no quality whatsoever and is often too slow on the ball, which led to him failing to utilise the space offered to him out wide. Deserves credit for the cross that led to the own goal from Freiburg but simply not good enough to start for Borussia Dortmund, especially when the stakes are so high.
#BVB weren’t bad in the first half, but weren’t good enough. The pressing intensity is lacking. Schulz and Passlack were bad. Dahoud a bit off and Reus is absent. Rose will surely make changes if this continues any longer. And Freiburg are playing well. #SCFBVB #Bundesliga
— Matthias Suuck (@MatthiasSuuck) August 21, 2021
Axel Witsel: 5/10
Axel Witsel had a slightly disappointing game at the heart of the backline this afternoon. He looked slow in dealing with the opposition attack, often lacking the mobility to keep up with the opposition. There were some good tackles here and there, but the midfielder struggled to control the game.
Manuel Akanji: 6.5/10
Manuel Akanji was one of the better performers for Dortmund, at least in the defensive unit. He was clinical with the majority of his tackles, proving to be a rock at the back for the visitors. However, the Swiss international was very underwhelming with his build-up play, often failing to find his teammates with the long balls over the top.
Nico Schulz: 3/10
After a few good performances, Nico Schulz had a horrid 30 minutes against SC Freiburg. He made multiple errors that led to potential counter-attacking opportunities for the opposition. He also offered very little going forward, ultimately making way for Raphael Guerreiro in the 38th minute.
Mahmoud Dahoud: 3/10
Mahmoud Dahoud was one of the worst performers for Borussia Dortmund in this fixture. He lacked precision in his passes, often losing possession and that too in key areas of the pitch. It led to the German struggling to take control of the game and find a way past this narrow Freiburg team.
Jude Bellingham: 7/10
Jude Bellingham was by far the best player for Dortmund as he offered the energy and determination that was missing from his teammates. The youngster came close to scoring in the first half itself but his effort hit the post. The Englishman looked very determined in possession, though he was lucky to have Yannick Keitel scoring the own goal, as he had missed the cross from Passlack for the Dortmund goal.
Giovanni Reyna: 6/10
Giovanni Reyna was the focal point of the Borussia Dortmund attack that failed to find any answers against the narrow shape of Freiburg. The young American showcased excellent close control to beat players in the final third but his decision making was very sloppy, to say the least.
Marco Reus: 4/10
It was an underwhelming performance from Marco Reus in the attacking midfield role. The BVB captain lacked ideas in the final third, often losing possession with poor first touches or failing to find teammates in behind the backline. It appears the experienced forward was suffering from a residual effect after the midweek loss to Bayern.
Donyell Malen: 4/10
Donyell Malen received his first start for the Black and Yellows, as he spearheaded the attack alongside Erling Haaland. However, the Dutchman was far from impressive. He lacked any real idea in the attacking third, often struggling to figure out what to do with the ball and simply not working hard enough to impact the game. Also missed a glorious opportunity to score in the second half.
Malen really not living up to expectations. Give him time though, new system, needs to find the chemistry. Tough one to take today but we’ve got to trust the process. #BVB
— Danski🐝🇵🇱 (@BorusseDan) August 21, 2021
Erling Haaland: 4/10
Erling Haaland endured one of his worst games for Dortmund, as he was defended masterfully well by Freiburg. The defensive duo of Philipp Lienhart and Nico Schlotterbeck kept the Norwegian at bay throughout the entirety of the game. The player himself lacked precision in front of goal, amassing a lot of poor first touches and missing one decent scoring opportunity in the second half.
Raphael Guerreiro: 5/10
Raphael Guerreiro had to be called upon far earlier than he had expected as he replaced Schulz even before the first-half whistle. Unfortunately, the Portuguese international simply wasn’t in his rhythm, having a lot of difficulties in playing through the Freiburg press despite his quality in possession.
Julian Brandt: 6.5/10
Julian Brandt tried to make things happen after coming on for Reyna in the final twenty minutes. He looked slightly promising but lacked support from his teammates.
Mats Hummels: N/A
It was refreshing to see Mats Hummels return to full fitness. Didn’t play enough to warrant a rating, though.
Emre Can: N/A
A late replacement for Passlack, a move that should have been made at the start of the game.
Youssoufa Moukoko: N/A
A late replacement for Malen. Another move that should have been made much earlier.