Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Arsenal (Ch.League)


Two goals in two minutes won the match for Dortmund who were second-best from the start, but dug deep and defended resolutely against Arsenal, who’ll be wondering how they lost 2-0 here tonight. With half the the ground still appealing for a penalty, captain Mats Hummels headed in a 49th minute corner for the opener.

Within 90 seconds, Arsenal had lost the ball in the final third, and much like the rest of the match, BVB broke quickly with Perisic and Lewandowski finding Marco Reus in full flow on the right. As the cavalry arrived, Reus pulled the ball back from the goal line for Kostas Katsouranis to drill the ball into the top corner from 15 yards out.

Arsenal had spurned some earlier chances to get their noses in front, but all too often failed to work the ball into the box, preferring to blaze high or wide from outside the area, rarely testing Roman Weidenfeller. Credit to man-of-the-match Neven Subotic and fellow centre-back Mats Hummels for commanding Dortmund’s backline so well.

POST-MATCH: In a brief press conference, Gray Surman said that “I don’t think we were great at all overall, but a win’s a win, and we did what we had to do. Sometimes fortune favours the brave,” before praising the performances of Subotic and Katsouranis – the latter of whom, he said that he thinks the fans are quickly growing fond of.

PRE-MATCH: Dortmund have made five changes to the side that let a two-goal lead slip at Mainz on Saturday. Marco Reus makes his long-awaited return to the starting XI, while top-scorer Lewandowski, ‘keeper Weidenfeller, Subotic, and Gündogan are the other replacements.

Dennis Praet is back in the squad after five weeks out with a hernia. For Arsenal, Theo Walcott doesn’t start. Nicklas Bendtner gets the nod instead. Aaron Ramsey misses out with an ankle injury. Juventus host Olympiakos tonight in the other Group H match.

                   Hummels 49
               Katsouranis 50
                                                 Att: 65,448*
 Signal Iduna Park. Dry 10°C. Ref: C. Bertolini (Switzerland)
   UEFA Champions League, Group Stage - Group H, Matchday 2 
                                (*reduced capacity of 65,590)


       BORUSSIA DORTMUND       |           ARSENAL         
 1. Roman Weidenfeller    7.0  |  1. Woljciech Szczesny    7.0
 2. Andreas Beck          7.0  |  3. Bacary Sagna          6.9
 4. Neven Subotic         9.0  | 13. José Enrique          7.0
 5. Mats Hummels (c)      8.6  |  4. Per Mertesacker       6.9
 3. Marcel Schmelzer      7.3  |  5. Thomas Vermaelen (c)  6.8
 6. Sven Bender           7.0  | 14. Jack Wilshere         7.0
 8. Ilkay Gündogan        6.7¹ | 27. Gervinho              7.0
11. Marco Reus            8.5  | 10. Mikel Arteta          8.2
24. Ivan Perisic          7.2² | 52. Nicklas Bendtner      6.1
19. Kevin Großkreutz      7.0³ | 19. Santi Cazorla         5.3
 9. Robert Lewandowski    6.9  |  9. Lukas Podolski        6.8
------------------------------- -------------------------------
20. Mitchell Langerak      .   | 21. Lukas Fabianski        . 
 7. Viktor Fischer        6.8³ |  6. Laurent Koscielny      .
15. Felipe Santana         .   |  8. Theo Walcott           .
22. Julian Koch            .   | 15. A.Oxlade-Chamberlain   .
23. Julian Schieber        .   | 17. Ryo Miyaichi           .
26. Dennis Praet          6.9² | 28. Kieran Gibbs           .
28. Kostas Katsouranis    7.2¹ | 33. Olivier Giroud         .

Livetweets from @realtimeFM:

“It’s a close call but I’m going with Dortmund today. Arsenal will give it everything but the home side should edge this. The visitors will miss Aaron Ramsey, and Theo Walcott is only fit enough to start from the bench.” – Ung Sokunthea, European Football Express.

[00] Dortmund get us underway here against last year’s runners-up.

[01] Nicklas Bendtner has a crack from fully 30 yards out which ends up in Row Z behind Roman Weidenfeller’s goal.

[04] Ivan Perisic has made a couple of wayward passes already so far, BVB looking to break quickly but undoing their own hard work. Meanwhile, Juventus have taken an early lead against Olympiakos through Fabio Quagliarella.

[06] Bendtner runs at the defence who back away, he gets a shot off from 20 yards which Weidenfeller has to palm wide before Schmelzer clears.

[06] Perisic dinks a great ball through the back four for Robert Lewandowski but Szczesny comes to claim it just ahead of the Dortmund striker.

[08] Perisic is again caught with a sloppy ball allowing Arsenal to break quickly. A long ball towards Gervinho is just intercepted by Mats Hummels.

[09] Hummels gets a toe-in on Cazorla but the ball squirms free in the box. Bendtner pokes it narrowly wide under pressure from Andreas Beck.

[10] Jack Wilshere getting the better of Sven Bender in the middle at the moment. Dortmund need to counter that.

[13] Corner to Arsenal, the first of the match. Subotic heads a cross from the right behind.

[15] Santi Cazorla is cautioned for a late challenge on Bender.

[17] Jose Enrique plays Lewandowski onside on a through ball from Perisic, but again Szczesny gets there just ahead of the striker.

[20] Dortmund aren’t getting any change from the Arsenal full backs this evening. Großkreutz isn’t getting past Sagna.

[23] Great passage of play from the hosts. Persic frees Reus on the right, but he’s just held off as he bursts into the box. From the clearance, they win the ball back, Beck whips in a fantastic cross and Perisic’s diving header is held at a dive by the keeper.

[24] Gervinho gets inside the area and rifles a shot at Weidenfeller which the keeper beats away before BVB clear. He’s dangerous when he cuts in from the right.

[25 A Subotic header only lands as far as Wilshere 25 yards out. He steadies himself and curls a ball narrowly over the bar.

[26] Meanwhile, Juventus are now 2-0 at home to Olympiakos. Leonardo Bonucci with the goal.

[30] Bendtner heads inches wide after great work by Enrique down the left wins Arsenal a corner.

[31] BVB go straight up the other end and win a corner through Großkreutz. Hummels flicks the ball on at the near post but Szczesny gathers.

[34] Bendtner again gets above the centre backs but his header is straight at Weidenfeller. Großkreutz and Reus have switched flanks for Dortmund.

[37] Podolski whips a cross in from the left that looks innocuous, but curls and bounces off the top of the crossbar. Arsenal win a corner off Schmelzer.

[38] Mertesacker nods the corner narrowly wide.

[39] Again, BVB are lightning quick on the break and go straight up the other end and win a corner of their own. Szczesny claims the ball as Subotic arrives at the far post.

[40] Substitution for Dortmund: Kostas Katsouranis replaces Ilkay Gündogan (6.7) with five minutes of the first half remaining.

HALF TIME: Borussia Dortmund 0-0 Arsenal (Ch.League)


[46] No changes at the break for either side. Still 2-0 to Juventus in Turin.

[47] Perisic gets a header away at the near post following good work from Reus, Szczesny at full stretch to tip it wide. Subotic skims the bar with a header from the corner.

[48] Penalty shout for Dortmund. Katsouranis plays in Schmelzer who goes down under the challenge from Gervinho. Referee and his additional assistant behind the goal say corner. Dortmund not so convinced.

[48] Kevin Großkreutz is cautioned for dissent for his protests.

[49] 1-0 DORTMUND! Mats Hummels wriggles free of the attentions of Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen at the corner and the Dortmund skipper powers a header past the Szczesny for the opener.

GOAL! Borussia Dortmund 1-0 Arsenal (Mats Hummels 49′)

[50] 2-0 DORTMUND! Two goals in 90 seconds! Perisic and Lewandowski win the ball back, getting it to Marco Reus. He runs down the right, pulls the ball back to Kostas Katsouranis on the edge of the box who cracks it first time into the top corner.

GOAL! Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Arsenal (Kostas Katsouranis 50′)

[52] That’s absolutely rocked Arsenal here tonight who have controlled much of the midfield battles. Dortmund were on the end of two quick goals in Mainz on Saturday and that’s exactly the body-blow they’ve dealt Arsenal.

[55] Arsenal have pushed forwards but have given the ball away allowing BVB to break quickly, and with the wind in their sails they look dangerous. The hosts have another corner here.

[56] Juventus, 2-0 up at home to Olympiakos, are down to 10 men after the dismissal of Pepe. He’ll miss the match in Dortmund at the end of the month.

[58] Mikel Arteta is cautioned after he body-checks Ivan Perisic. The Dortmund man (7.2) is replaced by Dennis Praet for his BVB debut.

[60] Attendance here tonight is 65,448. Reduced capacity of just 150 or so more than that, as the corners are shut.

[62] Third change for Dortmund. Viktor Fischer replaces Kevin Großkreutz (7.0). Arsenal still as they were at the kick off.

[66] Per Mertesacker slips intercepting a through ball from Fischer and Lewandowski is clean through. Somehow the Arsenal man manages to make a challenge otherwise that was game over.

[67] Jack Wilshere is somehow onside but can’t beat Weidenfeller as the keeper rushes to the edge of the box. Arteta smashes the rebound goalwards, it’s deflected and BVB clear.

[69] Marco Reus is caught late by Jose Enrique and needs treatment. BVB have already made all three subs.

[74] Enrique again fouls Reus. It’s 25 yards out, right of the box. Reus takes it himself and curls it round the wall but it’s safely held by the visiting keeper.

[76] Fischer and Praet are both dropping from the attack to support at the back and turnover possession nicely for BVB to break quickly. They’ve not had the possession, but the workrate is superb tonight.

[77] Marco Reus gets the ball on the edge of the D and tries to bend it into the top corner but it curls away from goal.

[79] Neven Subotic clears BVB’s lines again with a towering header. He’s been the stand out performer tonight.

[80] Reus is on the end of some rough challenges tonight. He doesn’t look happy out there. Ten minutes to get through.

[80] Mikel Arteta plays a lovely through ball to Gervinho but Schmelzer makes a clearance at the near post. Praet heads the danger away from the corner. Arsenal pushing forwards in numbers.

[81] Juventus are 3-0 up at home to Olympiakos now. The Greek champions lost by the same score line at home to Dortmund a fortnight ago.

[82] Penalty appeals waved away as Jack Wilshere and Mats Hummels collide in the box. The BVB skipper gets the ball away. Wilshere ends up in the book for his exuberant protests.

[85] If Arsenal don’t get anything from this they’ll look at the stats and wince. Two-thirds of the possession but have opted for speculative shots instead of killer balls. Bendtner should have done better with two early headers. Santi Cazorla hasn’t been given a sniff in this second half but the visitors haven’t made any changes against some tired Dortmund legs.

[87] Katsouranis plays Praet clean through, the youngster tries to bend it around Szczesny from 22 yards but the keeper gets a hand to it and it squirms wide.

[88] It’s now 4-0 to Juventus. Giovanni and Matri the most recent scorers.

[89] Viktor Fischer bursts down the left and draws a foul from Sagna. BVB getting men into the box for Praet’s delivery.

[90] The fourth official indicates a minimum of two additional minutes.

[90] Twenty-one goals so far in tonight’s eight matches. Time for another one or two?

[92] Neven Subotic, surely on for man of the match tonight, heads a cross behind for Arsenal’s 9th corner. Inside the final 20-odd seconds here.

[93] Jack Wilshere is a whisker wide with a header. Clean sheet for Dortmund tonight.

FULL TIME: Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Arsenal (Ch.League)


Dortmund have smashed-and-grabbed in their own backyard tonight. Two goals, barely a minute and a half apart, put this game to bed before Arsenal realised what had hit them. The visitors had some glorious early chances, but fell into a routine of going for the spectacular rather than the functional, as the high long-range and off-target statistics show.

Six points out of six for Dortmund, and they’ll be gunning to make it nine out of nine when Juventus come here in three weeks time. The early change saw BVB dig deep and counter, which was alarmingly effective. Marco Reus was on the end of some rough attention late on and may not be fit for the weekend’s visit of Hannover in the league.