Borussia Dortmund do their duty and beat SC Paderborn in a 3-0. They 3 points heap them to at least 9th place and only one point behind TSG Hoffenheim. Afer 88 minutes, when the score was settled, the stadium started to rise and chanted Jürgen Klopp’s name for a couple of minutes. The Dortmund coach tried not to react, as he revealed in the post-match interview. “I need to wear an emotional shield.” Otherwise it would probably too much to bear for Klopp.
But to the match. SC Paderborn were gritty and well organized, while Dortmund looked a bit sedated in the first half an our. Not much turbulence on either side, a few shots from distance from BVB, a penalty shout for Paderborn on the other side. Eventually Aubameyang had a good chance, as Kagawa and Mkhitaryan combined with one-touch football and in the way they are supposed to play for a whole season. Sadly Lukas Kruse saw the lob coming and got a hand to it.
The second half was MUCH better, nay, revolutionary compared to the first. Borussia Dortmund finally started combining and created chances. Eventually Blaszczykowski sent Aubameyang down the wing, who whipped in the cross. Mkhitaryan headed it in and from that moment on the game felt out of reach for SC Paderborn.
Dortmund found more and more space and more and more confidence. It looked like deep down in a moist cellar room, somebody pulled an old rusty leaver back on to “football mode”. BVB looked as dominant as in their best seasons, unlocking Paderborn’s defense with sharp, vertical passes. In the end it was Matthias Ginter showing the greed to throw himself into the ball just outside the box, to slot it through to Aubameyang. Another lob, successful this time. 2-0, job done.
Since Ginter received a lot of criticism on our podcast, it’s time single him out and laud him for a very good performance next to Ilkay Gündogan. In defensive midfield the 21-year old looks very assured and comfortable.
Dortmund could have scored four or five goals, but in the end it were three. Paderborn’s center back Rafa Lopéz with a harsh error, playing the ball directly into the feet of Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Mkhitaryan immediately played it forward for Kagawa to pick up and slot home. A tidy goal from the Japanese, who deserved to finally score his third Bundesliga goal of the season.
It was a good day for BVB and a performance to build on. Next Saturday Eintracht Frankfurt visits the Westfalenstadion and it would be nice if Dortmund could reproduce a win to stay in the chase for the Euro League places.