Dortmund slipped to their fourth consecutive away defeat in the league going down 1-2 at Freiburg today, in match where two set-pieces stunned BVB, and they didn’t have enough in the tank to force an equaliser past the impressive Oliver Baumann.
A tedious first-half briefly sprung into life when Baumann made a superb double-save from Stevan Jovetic and Sven Bender, before Max Kruse headed inches wide seconds later. Julian Koch had headed against the woodwork earlier, but there was little else to write about before the break.
Surman made five changes to the side that beat Braunschweig in midweek, changing three at the back, with Hummels in for Subotic who didn’t pass a pre-match fitness test and forced a change. Praet and Sven Bender were also restored to the starting XI.
After the interval, Julian Schuster curled a brilliant free-kick past Weidenfeller before Dortmund failed to clear their lines at a corner and Massimo Bruno doubled the lead. Lars Bender’s dedication got the ball to Julian Schieber to immediately pull one back but an equaliser wasn’t on the cards.
Welcome to Mage-Solar-Stadion, where Freiburg host Dortmund. The home side sit 11th and could break into the top seven today with a good result, while the champions will be looking to keep up the pressure on leaders Leverkusen.
Five changes for Dortmund from their team that beat Braunschweig in midweek, with three of the back four changing. In come regular full-backs Schmelzer and Koch, while captain Mats Hummels replces Neven Subotic who drops to the bench in need of some rest.
Sven Bender is back alongside brother Lars for the first time in six matches after injury, and Dennis Praet is behind the striker after being called-up to the Belgian senior squad for the first time.
Paul Weiß of Deutsche Fußball Review fancies Dortmund today: “People will argue that BVB have a poor recent away record, but Freiburg are struggling. They’re missing Jan Rosenthal and Johannes Flum today.”
 It’s a drizzly afternoon here, and referee Wolfgang Stark gets us under way with the home side kicking-off!
 Early touches for both keepers as Hummels nods back to Weidenfeller who launches a long ball upfield towards Jovetic that Baumann comes and claims ahead of the striker.
 Goal already in the day’s fixtures. Eren Derdiyok has put Hoffenheim in front at Hertha Berlin. Three other fixtures kicked off at the same time: Augsburg-Mainz, Schalke-Leverkusen, and Wolfsburg-Nürnberg.
 Julian Draxler has put 2nd place Schalke in front at home to top of the table Leverkusen. Schalke will be top tonight with a win.
 Here in Freiburg, the hosts have won a corner. Schuster whips it to the far post but Hummels clears before a ball is overhit back into the box and out for a goal kick.
 Fischer and Schmelzer team uop well with the latter beating his man and getting a cross in towards Praet at the near post but Baumann is brave and collects.
 Second corner for Freiburg as Hummels puts behind a cross before Putsila can turn it home. Hosts looking dangerous down their right.
 Controversy as Dortmund counter from the coprner and win one of their own through Marco Reus, but Tim Kruse is down injured in the Dortmund half and play continued. Freiburg defend it with ten men and clear away. Boos and whistles for Reus, who couldn’t have known about the injury as he ran with the ball.
 Makiadi has the first shot of the game, an effort that sails over the bar from 25 yards after a Dortmund move broke down.
 Twenty gone here, it’s not a thrilling game by any means. Dortmund having to work hard to break down Freiburg’s packed defence. This is very much the type of game you can see the hosts nicking with a route one goal.
 As I type, BVB win a fortunate corner when Hedenstad puts a Fischer cross behind. Ádám Szalai has put Mainz one-up at Augsburg. Dortmund’s first corner becomes a second as Ginter gets to the delivery ahead of Hummels.
 Woodwork! Julian Koch gets to Praet’s corner first and heads it against the angle of post and bar before it goes wide. Agonisingly close!
 Viktor Fischer tries to curl one from the edge of the box put it bends a yard wide. In Berlin, Bicakic has equalised for Hertha against Hoffenheim.
 Jovetic has three men around him and he does excellently to ride the challenges and get the ball out wide to Koch, but the cross into the near post is cleared away by Ginter.
 Still alive in the commentary box, fear not! Sissoko has put Wolfsburg in front at home to Nürnberg.
 Two stunning saves from Baumann keeps out the visitors as Jovetic gets on the end of a Fischer cross, before he dives the other way to push away Sven Bender’s low drive from the edge of the box. Amazing stuff from the ‘keeper.
 Anton Putsila beats Hummels to a Max Kruse cross and the hosts should be ahead as Weidenfeller was rooted to the spot, but it is inches wide of the post.
 Two additional minutes here. Polter has doubled Wolfsburg’s lead over Nürnberg.
HALF-TIME: SC Freiburg 0-0 Borussia Dortmund (Bundesliga).
[HT] Dortmund have made a change at the break, André Schürrle is on for Fischer (6.7).
 Off we go!
 Eren Derdiyok has his second of the match to restore Hoffenheim’s lead at Hertha.
 Mensur Mujdza, Freiburg’s best player so far, bends one wide from distance.
 Cedrick Makiadi repeats the move a couple of moments later.
 Julian Koch slides through Kruse, clattering the forward. Free-kick for Freiburg, 25 yards out, pretty central.
 FREIBURG 1-0 DORTMUND: Julian Schuster curls in a beautiful free-kick to open the scoring. It looked like it would take a set piece to get the goals coming, and Schuster has pulled one out the bag. Top corner, no chance for Weidenfeller.
 Schulz has been sent off for Hertha who trail at home to Hoffenheim.
 Another great save from Baumann who is at full-stretch to tip a Schürrle effort away after the winger cuts inside and lets fly from 20 yards.
 Schürrle has another sight of the top corner but misses by inches. BVB look like they’re preparing a double change. Kruse wins a corner for the hosts off Koch.
 Two changes for the visitors. On come Julian Schieber and Mario Götze as BVB go two up-top. Off go Praet (6.6) and Reus (6.6). Meanwhile, Schalke look to have sealed top spot tonight with two goals in two minutes from Lewis Holtby and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar to put them 3-0 up at home to Leverkusen.
 Mario Göze nearly scores the goal of the season as he picks up the ball on the edge of hios own box at the Freibrug corer, dribbles the length of the park and then is denied by the feet of Baumann. Reasonable shout for a penalty too as Makiadi made a clumsy challenge on him.
 Ginter heads away the Dortmund corner, but they win another. Götze looks full of life. BVB work the ball back into the six yard box after a clearance but Schieber can’t get a touch on it.
 Götze is hit with a tough Kruse tackle in the box. Takes ball and man. Dortmund man left clutching his leg as play continues.
 First change for Freiburg: Kruse (7.1) is replaced by Massimo Bruno.
 Adam Hlousek has pulled a goal back for Nürnberg at Wolfsburg, whole Tobias Weis has extended Hoffenheim’s lead in Berlin.
 Makiadi clatters Sven Bender and leaves him on the deck, as Dortmund defend a Freiburg attack which wins the hosts a corner. Champions starting to get rattled by the tough tackling.
 FREIBURG 2-0 DORTMUND: The corner is initially cleared but popped back into the six-yard box by Freis. Koch hasn’t got out from the line, and plays Massimo Bruno onside and he nods past Weidenfeller to double the lead.
 Change for Freiburg: Immanuel Höhn replaces Makiadi (7.0).
 FREIBURG 2-1 DORTMUND: The champions are right back in it as Lars Bender robs Ginter of possession as he brings it out of his own box, before outmuscling Ferati and slipping through Julian Schieber who takes a touch and slots home from 15 yards.
 Dortmund corner. Pinto heads behind a cross meant for Schieber.
 Schmelzer clatters Mujdza inside the box, just a corner, but doesn’t look like the Freiburg man is getting up after that.
 Freiburg change: Daniel Caligiuri comes on for the injured Mujdza (7.0) after a stoppage.
 Minimum of four additional minutes.
[90+2] Freis turns a cross towards goal from eight yards out but it cannons off a sliding Schmelzer and drops inches wide.
FULL-TIME: SC Freiburg 2-1 Borussia Dortmund (Bundesliga). [PKM]
Dortmund should have been ahead at the break, but as the match went on you got the feeling that the hosts would be able to snatch something from a set-piece. Alas for BVB, they did so twice, and condemned the holders to a fourth road defeat in a row.
Once Hummels and Subotic are back alongside each other, I’d expect far less changes at the back. BVB stay fourth but the gap to the leaders increases to four points. Next weekend, Hertha Berlin travel to Signal Iduna Park.
- 22.11: Bundesliga Borussia Dortmund v. Hertha Berlin SC (Signal Iduna Park)
- 25.11: Champions League #5 Valencia v. Dortmund (Mestalla Stadium)
- 29.11: Bundesliga Borussia Dortmund v. Bayern Munich (Signal Iduna Park)
- 03.12: Bundesliga Augsburg v. Borussia Dortmund (SGL Arena)
- 06. 12: Bundesliga FSV Mainz v. Borussia Dortmund (Coface Arena)