Erling Haaland failed to score yet again as Borussia Dortmund stumbled to a 1-1 draw against 1. FC Koln this weekend.
Borussia Dortmund’s winning run in the Bundesliga came to an end after they were held to a 1-1 draw by 1. FC Koln on Sunday. The result helped Bayern Munich extend their lead at the top to six points, effectively killing the Bundesliga title race, with just seven games remaining.
Coming on the back of securing consecutive clean sheets, the Dortmund defence was boosted by the returns of Manuel Akanji and Raphael Guerreiro. Yet somehow, the visitors looked much weaker defensively and had only themselves to blame for taking a defensive approach after scoring an early opener through Marius Wolf.
Indeed, Dortmund looked way too passive against Koln, who dominated the game for a large portion, causing menace with their front two of Anthony Modeste and Sebastian Andersson. They were rewarded for their efforts as well, with Andersson netting the equaliser in the 36th minute.
Dortmund looked much better in the second half due to the tactical changes introduced by Marco Rose at half-time. However, they were unable to break the deadlock as Koln somehow held on for a point. Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the Dortmund players following their disappointing draw against the Billy Goats this weekend.
Gregor Kobel: 6.5/10
Gregor Kobel had to remain assertive when claiming the ball in the air due to the presence of both Modeste and Andersson. Thankfully for Dortmund, their goalkeeper rarely made an error and was a calming presence in between the sticks. Unfortunately for him, he was not provided much support.
Felix Passlack: 2/10
After a couple of decent performances, Felix Passlack had a night to forget. He gave away possession multiple times on the right flank and offered no quality whatsoever. Koln players were allowed to whip in crosses into the box thanks to the sheer incompetence of the right-back, who was subbed off at half-time.
The Nico X can X Marin X passlack really synced in that last couple of weeks. Sell Akanji, Haaland already they don't want to be here, We miss reus badly in chance creation.
— Travis #8 (@CoachTravis4) March 20, 2022
Emre Can: 6/10
Emre Can was not able to replicate his performance against Mainz. It appeared he lacked the communication with Manuel Akanji and did not cover himself in glory when defending the cross that led to Andersson’s equaliser just before half-time. He was not poor by any means, but one would expect him to offer a bit more quality in games like these.
Manuel Akanji: 5/10
Manuel Akanji’s return to the side turned out to be detrimental for BVB as the Swiss offered no real solidity in the backline. He struggled in dealing with Andersson, thus allowing Koln to cause problems with their crosses from wider areas.
Raphael Guerreiro: 5/10
Raphael Guerreiro was not troubled much defensively, largely thanks to the early exit of Benno Schmitz due to injury. But offensively, the left-back barely made any impression other than the rocket strike that could have easily beaten Marvin Schwabe in goal.
Axel Witsel: 6/10
Axel Witsel was asked to control the midfield all by himself in the absence of the suspended Mahmoud Dahoud. The responsibility was a bit too much for the ageing midfielder, whose lack of pace and agility made it almost impossible for him to compete with Salih Ozcan in the middle of the park.
Jude Bellingham: 6/10
Jude Bellingham started the game well, producing a phenomenal ball to feed Wolf for Dortmund’s early opener. However, after that point, the Englishman struggled with his decision-making in the final third and squandered multiple counter-attacking opportunities due to his indecision. Not the best of outings from the talented teenage sensation.
A special ball from Jude Bellingham sets up Marius Wolf's opening goal for Borussia Dortmund 🔥 pic.twitter.com/5sUSi4c0Y1
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) March 20, 2022
Giovanni Reyna: 6.5/10
Giovanni Reyna was one of the few Dortmund players who offered some semblance of quality in the final third. The American was extremely effective with his one-touch game, as he notably created an opportunity for Haaland in the second half. He did miss a glorious opportunity to feed a Dortmund player on the counter, but his cross was blocked off Jan Thielmann.
Marius Wolf: 5/10
Marius Wolf started the game majestically, making full use of an early chance created by Bellingham to score the opener. Apart from that, the attacker was not useful at all, often struggling to even play through the Koln press. He lacked the quality to make an impact in the final third.
Thorgan Hazard: 2/10
Thorgan Hazard was by far the most underwhelming performer on the night for Dortmund. The Belgian made absolutely no impact on the proceedings. He kept losing possession at every step, while his decision-making in the final third left much to be desired. He questionably played on until the 81st minute, when he was replaced by Donyell Malen.
Erling Haaland: 5/10
Erling Haaland could not make much of an impact upon his return to the Dortmund starting eleven. He was defended marvellously by ex-BVB youth player Luca Kilian, who did not even offer him a hint of space inside the box. He did have one chance to score, but his attempt was saved brilliantly by Schwabe. Haaland is now yet to score since returning from injury.
Erling Haaland big chance missed.
— 𝙁𝙎 🐝 (@Fs_BVB) March 20, 2022
Mats Hummels: 5/10
Mats Hummels was brought in at half-time to help Dortmund switch to a back three. While the tactical change worked, Hummels himself looked lacklustre in possession and offered little to no quality on the pitch.
Julian Brandt: 5/10
Julian Brandt lacked the desired impact as well after coming on for Guerreiro midway through the second half. He did not do much apart from rotating possession in the final third.
Donyell Malen: N/A
A late replacement for Hazard, who should have been introduced much earlier. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Marin Pongracic: N/A
A late replacement for Wolf. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.
Reinier Jesus: N/A
A late replacement for Haaland. Did not play enough to warrant a rating.