B.orussia Dortmund and Borussia Mönchengladbach may have their problems this Bundesliga season – neither of the two Champions League round of 16 players was really satisfied with their place in the table and their points after the first half of the season. But as protagonists of the glowing entertainment show that the Bundesliga is always, these clubs are without a doubt among the best the competition has to offer.
In a wild offensive spectacle at the beginning of the second half of the season, the Gladbachers defeated BVB 4: 2 and overtook Dortmund in the table, which could even slide down to seventh place at the weekend. The Revierklub will remain uneasy in the coming days, the vitally important qualification for the Champions League threatens to be in serious danger. Because the team just plays too changeable and allows way too many goals.
Problems on the defensive
The problems in the defense of coach Edin Terzic’s team could already be seen in the first minute, when this game supposedly started with a goal from Florian Neuhaus. But Jonas Hofmann had previously pushed Dortmund’s Jew Bellingham with both hands when he won the ball, as referee Manuel Grafe found after viewing the TV images. The Gladbach coach Marco Rose was beside himself because his team had only lost two points in Stuttgart last Sunday due to a dubious video referee decision. But even without Gladbach’s leadership, BVB was almost overrun in the initial phase; Nico Elvedis 1-0 was overdue (12th). The central defender had headed a free kick from the great Jonas Hofmann into the goal. Again a long time in the Cologne basement was checked for a possible offside position, but this time everything was correct. With that, BVB seemed to continue its problem phase with mixed performances in the 1-1 draw against Mainz and the 2-1 draw in Leverkusen.
Within seven minutes, they turned the game around, initially with two goals from Erling Haaland, each after wonderful plays and direct assists from Jadon Sancho (22nd, 28th). BVB was back and once again lived up to its reputation as an ensemble of changeability. This team just can’t find a good balance between offensive brilliance and concentrated defensive work. And so it did not take long until the 2: 2, which was favored by Roman Bürki. The Dortmund goalkeeper, who this calendar year had already conceded avoidable goals against Mainz and Leverkusen, let a flat, but by no means very well placed free kick by Lars Stindl ricochet off, where Elvidi dusted off for his second goal of the evening (32nd). The central defender had already made it 1-0 against Werder Bremen last Tuesday.
Thuram reports back after being blocked
Nobody missed the top strikers from Borussia from the Lower Rhine who were sitting on the bench. Marcus Thuram was back after his suspension imposed by the sports court because the French spat at an opponent from Hoffenheim. And Breel Embolo, who was picked up by the police last weekend for possible violations of corona rules, but denies having participated in the illegal party that was picked up, was also missing from the starting line-up.
Both came on during the second half, but it was the next defensive player to score a Mönchengladbach goal. Shortly after the break, Julian Brandt defended weakly against Ramy Bensebaini, who scored 3-2 from a tight angle (49th). Then it became a little quieter in the penalty areas, and the longer the game lasted, the more it became clear that the Mönchengladbachers are currently a little more mature and stable. And when Thuram headed a Neuhaus corner to make it 4-2 in the goal (79th), BVB’s resistance was broken, and after just one point from the three most recent games, it slipped deeper and deeper into crisis.