Dortmund 1-1 Valencia (UCL Group G Match 1)

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Valencia clung on to earn a point at Signal Iduna Park this evening as Dortmund began their defence of the Champions League. The hosts started brightly, with a new formation compacting the midfield and driving the play through to both strikers, but it was centre-back Felipe Santana who opened the scoring from a corner inside the opening five minutes.

Valencia equalised in similar fashion twenty minutes later when Weidenfeller saved at a corner, the defence couldn’t clear, and Víctor Ruiz had a simple tap-in.

Surman’s best-laid plans were thrown into disarray when Perisic went off before half-time, and he was forced into further changes to shape and personnel when Lewandowski and Praet both picked-up knocks. The former will likely miss the trip to Bayer Leverkuen at the weekend.

Dortmund weren’t happy with the lack of protection from the English officials, as both Schürrle and Götze were caught late by opponents who were happy to rough-up the holders.

The two up-top shape looked like it would yield results for BVB before the enforced changes, but another game has passed with both Lewandowski and Jovetic firing blanks, with the Macedonian guilty of fluffing a stoppage time effort that would have taken all three points.

In the other Group G match, Legia Warsaw and Standard Liège drew 1-1 in Poland.

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Borussia Dortmund have paraded the trophy around Signal Iduna Park pre-match, and the defence begins in earnest today with the visit of Valencia. Not since AC Milan in 1990 has a team retained the trophy, a feat that hasn’t been achieved in the competition’s latest format.

It’s a radically different shape today for Dortmund, who lose their wide men in order to play both Lewandowski and Jovetic up front. Perisic is behind them, with Praet and the Bender twins in the middle. No Hummels in the starting XI.

Leon Horn from The Express is with us, “I think this is a difficult one o call and it will definitely be close but I reckon Dortmund have what it takes to beat Valencia today.” He singles out Sven Bender and Valencia ‘keeper Vicente Guaita as the key men today.

Legia Warsaw host Standard Liege in the other Group G game today, with six other ties taking place across the continent. We’ll bring you score updates as we get them.

[01] Mark Clattenburg checks with his assistants and the home side get us under way! The Englishman stamps his authority early on, awarding Dortmund a free-kick thirty seconds in after Costa’s foul on Praet. Ball is played forward and Ivan Perisic stings Guaita’s palms from 20 yards.

[03] Marcel Schmelzer hits a ball forward to Lewandowski, which the striker holds up and lays off back to the defender. He cuts inside and squares for opposite full-back Andreas Beck to latch on to, but he snatches at the shot and drills it six yards wide.

[04] Corner to Dortmund who have started the far brighter of the two sides. Praet finds Schmelzer out wide who has his cross put behind by Pereira.

[05] Dortmund 1-0 Valencia: Dennis Praet whips the corner in, Felipe Santana heads it towards goal at the near post. It’s pushed away by the ‘keeper but he can’t hold on to it and the centre-back is quickest to react to prod it over the line.

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[06] Joao Pereira goes to ground theatrically over Lars bender’s challenge, but Clattenburg gives the free-kick and has a word with the Dortmund man who isn’t happy about the decision.

[08] First touch for Dortmund ‘keeper and captain Roman Weidenfeller as he confidently comes to claim a cross from Guardado.

[10] Valencia are temporarily down to ten-men as Feghouli is receiving treatment after a challenge from Lars Bender.

[12] Goals from around Europe: Twente lead Arsenal, Juventus are ahead at Rubin Kazan, and PSG are in front at Shamrock Rovers.

[14] Felipe Santana looking impressive at the back for Dortmund, covering ground to snuff out opportunities for the visitors as they probe down either flank.

[16] Schmelzer is getting away down the left, but his cross is claimed by Guaita before Jovetic can turn it home at the far post. Meanwhile, Standard have the lead in Poland in the other Group G match. Ezekiel the scorer against Legia Warsaw.

[20] Lionel Messi has put Barcelona ahead from the spot in Monaco. Here in Dortmund, Ivan Perisic curls a low shot wide from 25 yards out. Shot was on, with defenders crowding-out Jovetic.

[21] Great chance for Lewandowski as he turns his man following good work from Praet to work the ball into the box, but he drills the shot wide from 15 yards.

[23] A gigantic throw from Guardado causes problems for Dortmund as Santana twice clears away, but the hosts can’t get the ball away from the box, and it eventually falls for Soldado twelve yards out who fires it straight at Weidenfeller.

[24] Mark Clattenburg gives Dortmund a free-kick inches outside the box as Pereira brings down Lewandowski. Quick glance over to this assistant to confirm it was outside. Ivan Perisic steps up, but can’t bend it round the wall and it fizzes a yard wide.

[26] Valencia have their first corner when Feghouli has a free-kick deflected wide after Praet brought-down Costa 25 yards out.

[27] Dortmund 1-1 Valencia: The Spanish side draw level from the set-piece much as Dortmund took the lead early on. Costa’s delivery is headed towards goal by Soldado, Weidenfeller gets a hand to it but can’t prevent Víctor Ruiz from prodding home from close range for his first goal for the club.

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[28] Arsenal are level at Twente through an own-goal from Yttergard Jenssen. N’Dieng had the hosts in front after four minutes. Juventus are now 2-0 up in Russia, with Marko Vucinic scoring the second against Rubin Kazan.

[31] Schmelzer keeps getting crossed into the box for Dortmund from the left but can’t get a man on the end of them yet. It looks like Surman is indicating for Lewandowski and Jovetic to switch sides.

[34] Corner for Dortmund as Cissokho stretches to toe the ball away and behind from Lewandowski, but he looks in some discomfort. Valencia defend the set-piece with ten, but they scramble it away.

[35] Twente are back in-front against Arsenal, with Helenius getting their second. Juventus are now 3-0 up at Rubin Kazan, Vucinic has a second.

[38] Corner for Valencia, Feghouli and Schmelzer having a fantastic battle on the far side. Dortmund make a surprise early substitution: Mari Götze is on for Ivan Perisic (5.6).

[38] Benitez has a great chance to put Valencia in front as Dortmund can’t clear their lines from the corner, but Weidenfeller makes a great save at close range.

[40] Corner at the other end for Dortmund, with Víctor Ruiz taking the ball off the toes of Jovetic from Lewandowski’s through-ball. Praet’s corner is flicked on by Santana, Guaita makes a great save to push it away and Neven Subotic somehow has his shot from inside the six-yard ox blocked on the line.

[42] Alexis Sánchez has struck twice in two minutes to put Barcelona three-up in Monaco, while Ander Herrera has doubled PSG’s lead at Shamrock Rovers.

[45] Two additional minutes here as CLattenburg gives Praet a talking to after he catches Pereira.

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HALF-TIME: Borussia Dortmund 1-1 Valencia (UCL Group G)

[HT] Scores from elsewhere: Monaco 0-3 Barcelona, Twente 2-1 Arsenal, Legia 0-1 Stanard, Olympiakos 0-0 Young Boys, Rubin Kazan 0-3 Juventus, Shamrock ROvers 0-2 Paris SG, Sporting Lisbon 0-0 Manchester United.

[46] No changes, we’re back under way!

[47] Víctor Ruiz flies in to a challenge on Lewandowski that leavs the Dortmund striker on the deck. Won the ball, but he will require treatment. Julian Schieber is on the bench for the hosts.

[49] Double change for Dortmund: André Schürrle and Marco Reus erplace Praet (7.6) and Lewandowski (6.7) respectively. They’ve changed back to their familiar 4-2-3-1 shape. Praet impressive today but looking leggy, Lewandowski took a knock.

[50] Jovetic fires straight at the ‘keeper from 25 yards. Reus working the ball square for him from the right.

[50] Wolf pulled a goal back for Monaco, but Messi hit his second moments later as Barcelona are now 4-1 up. Hamsik has a third for PSG at Shamrock Rovers.

[52] Corner for Valencia. Weidenfeller saves well from Benitez after good work from Feghouli. Subotic heads it away.

[54] Marco Reus is inches away from putting Dortmund in front as Jovetic flicks the ball forwards for him. He skins Cissokho for pace, gets to a narrow angle and fires a shot right across the line.

[56] First change for Valencia: Matias Schelotto is on for Guardado (6.8).

[61] Corner for Dortmund. We’ve seen some action from these so far. Götze will take it. Schmelzer won it. Delivery comes in but Reus is penalised for a push.

[63] Schelotto’s contribution for the visitors so far is to give away two free-kicks. Marco Reus heads Götze’s second delivery a yard or so wide from twelve yards out.

[64] Dortmund win another corner, when Feghouli challenges Götze. Goals elsewhere to report: Arsenal are level at 2-2 in Twente through Walcott, Karczewski has equalised for Legia at home to Liege, Mitroglou has opened the scoring for Olympiakos at home to Young Boys, and Asamoah has put Juventus 4-1 up at Rubin Kazan.

[65] Götze is in pain after the hard challenge from Feghouli. Dortmund have used all three subs, and Surman looks concerned.

[69] Joao Pereira has gone in from behind on Schürrle and now he looks in discomfort. Free-kick just outside the box, to the left of goal. Götze is back on and takes it, but Benitez clears away.

[70] Attendance today is 64,872.

[72] Schürrle puts the ball into the box, but Víctor Ruiz is getting the upper-hand on Jovetic so far, clearing away.

[74] Valencia make their second change: Jérémy Mathieu replaces Feghouli (7.1) and he immediately clatters Sven Bender. The Dortmund bench are on their feet gesticulating at the English officials at a lack of yellow cards so far today. Dortmund win a corner from the free-kick.

[80] Goals round-up as we enter the final ten minutes: Monaco have pulled it back to 2-4 hosting Barcelona, while Christoffersen has equalised for Young Boys at Olympiakos.

[81] Final roll of the dice for Valencia: Adil Rami is on for Gago (7.0).

[82] Ironic cheers ring round Signal Iduna Park as Timo Costa is cautioned for a challenge on Lars Bender.

[84] Castaignos has put Twente in front for a third time tonight against Arsenal, it’s 3-2 there. Olympiakos are back in front at home to Young Boys, with Mitroglu getting his, and their, second.

[86] Here it’s end-to-end stuff, with both midfield looking exhausted, but the defences are holding up for both sides so neither ‘keeper tested.

[89] Mathieu hits a dipping half-volley from 30 yards out that Weidenfeller sees wide. Valencia been taking their time over restarts lately, they look happy with a point. Dortmund pushing for all three.

[90] Five additional minutes. Meanwhile, Theo Walcott has equalised for Arsenal, it’s 3-3 at Twente.

[90+1] Valencia look the more likely to nick this. Dortmund just can’t win the ball back in the middle. Schelotto’s and Mathieus’s fresh legs giving the visitors options on each flank.

[90+4] Stevan Jovetic holds his head in his hands after blowing a chance to win it. Götze fired the ball into the box, it deflects off Amorebieta staright to the Dortmund striker but he hits it straight at Guaita from 15 yards.

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FULL-TIME: Borussia Dortmund 1-1 Valencia (UCL Group G). [PKM]

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A hard-won point for both sides, but Surman looks disappointed with things. Forced to change their shape after losing Lewandowski and Praet to knocks, and the impetus was lost from the side. Dortmund started brightly but burned out, with a busy international schedule looking like it took its toll on the home players.

A tough-tackling Valencia will be happiest with the point, and Dortmund will be have to be on top of their game when they meet again last this autumn. Felipe Santana wins the man of the match award for his aerial prowess at both ends, but Lewandowski and Jovetic have drawn a blank for Dortmund once again.

    • 21.09: Bundesliga Bayer Leverkusen v. Borussia Dortmund (BayArena)
    • 24.09: Bundesliga Borussia Dortmund v. FC Nürnberg (Signal Iduna Park)
    • 27.09: Bundesliga Hannover 96 v. Borussia Dortmund (HDI-Arena)
    • 30.09: UEFA Champions League Standard Liège v. Dortmund (Maurice Dufrasne)
    • 04.10: Bundesliga Borussia Dortmund v. VfB Stuttgart (Signal Iduna Park)

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