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Bayern fall 1-0 to a determined Dortmund

Mario Götze spoiled the day for the Bavarians, as Dortmund claimed three points to send Bayern down to second place for the first time since last year.

Borussia Dortmund v Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga
Thomas Müller remains frustrated in his Bundesliga campaign.
Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images

Bayern had hoped to reclaim their lead atop the table from RB Leipzig, but Dortmund’s determination not to fall further behind and Bayern’s inability to capitalize on scoring opportunities resulted in a Dortmund victory that leaves Bayern in second place while raising Dortmund to third in the Bundesliga race.

Götze leads Dortmund's blitz

The early first half was a Dortmund showcase, with Mario Götze playing the starring role. Opening the match with a rustic foul on his former teammate, Franck Ribery, Götze terrorized Bayern today, as he and his teammates pressured Bayern ruthlessly in the opening minutes, using their ferocious pace to press Bayern’s defense, control the midfield, and beat Bayern at their own possession game.

That effort to leverage that pressure into an early goal was quickly rewarded, as Götze initiated an attack from Dortmund’s right and received the ball back from Lukasz Piszczek, leaving Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang lurking unmarked in front of Bayern’s goal. Götze delivered a deadly assist right past Mats Hummels, and Aubameyang gave the ball just the light touch it needed to skid across the line, just beyond Manuel Neuer’s reach.

Dortmund increased the pressure while Bayern responded, leading to several impressive shots. For Dortmund, Andre Schürrle blasted a ferocious shot off the volley that fortunately flew straight into Neuer’s arms rather than a far corner. For Bayern, Xabi Alonso picked out Philipp Lahm with a long pass on Dortmund’s goal line. Lahm crossed the ball beautifully off the volley to Thiago in the center of the penalty area. Thiago leapt skyward to scissor-kick the ball in, but he only booted the ball harmlessly out of bounds.

As the half wore on, Bayern successfully created multiple shots, only to be thwarted on the final touch. A typical case came just before the halftime whistle – after Joshua Kimmich heroically kept possession of the ball despite being pinned in a corner by two BVB defenders: a fantastic pass from Alonso found Hummels at the far post, but his game-tying header bounced lazily into Roman Bürki's arms.

Bayern fight to the finish, but fail to find an answer

The ferocity of the first half intensified in the second – but neither team could capitalize on their chances to score. Early on, Aubameyang nearly scored a second goal off a marvelous assist from Andre Schürrle, but Boateng was able to leap into the path of the shot at the very last instant. Bayern answered in kind at the opposite end of the field with a dangerous cross from Lahm: as Lewandowski pounced to head it into the net, Bürki managed to get a fist on the ball and punch it away from danger. Meanwhile, magnificent work by Thomas Müller on the right was negated when a deft backheel goal by Ribery was disallowed for offsides.

Bayern continued to press Dortmund, but the final touch on the ball was simply lacking. Just before the hour mark, Douglas Costa replaced Joshua Kimmich, reinforcing Bayern’s offense with fresh legs. His presence immediately reinvigorated Bayern’s attack, forcing Dortmund to concede several corners, but Alonso fired the best shot to come from their effort off the woodwork.

Alonso was at the center of an unflattering scene, when he uncharacteristically misplayed the ball right to the feet of Aubameyang, who charged ahead to face Neuer one on one. Fortunately for Bayern, Aubameyang headed straight up the middle and Neuer parried his shot out of bounds, preventing Dortmund from taking a 2-0 lead.

One of Bayern’s best late opportunities came as Dortmund's Marcel Schmelzer took a knock and sat injured on the pitch, waiting for a substitution. Ignoring him, Rafinha and Costa ruthlessly seized the opportunity to create a play on the right, but after several dangerous duels, the onslaught came to nothing – except a spillover of tempers. Shoving ensued as anger over the play boiled over, and both Adrian Ramos and Ribery were finally shown the yellow card. The black and yellow crowd booed Bayern almost continuously thereafter until the final whistle was blown.

With four minutes of stoppage time, Bayern desperately tried to find a tying goal. A final long ball from Hummels found Lewandowski at the ready. The hostile crowd collectively held its breath in horror, but Lewandowski's header went just wide of the open goal. It would be Bayern’s last chance, the missed shot sealing Bayern’s first loss of the season to archrivals Dortmund.

Match Details

Bayern Munich 0-1 Borussia Dortmund

Dortmund: Aubameyang (11’)

Yellow Cards:
Dortmund: Bartra (19’), Götze (50’), Ramos (88’)
Bayern: Ribery (88’), Sanches (91’)

Dortmund XI: Bürki; Bartra, Sokratis, Ginter; Weigl; Schmelzer, Schürrle (Durm 68’), Götze (Castro, 76’), Piszczek (Pulisic, 88’); Aubameyang (11’)

Bayern XI: Neuer; Alaba, Hummels, Boateng, Lahm (Rafinha, 68’); Thiago, Alonso (Sanches, 74’), Kimmich (Costa, 59’); Ribery, Lewandowski, Müller

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