Away win for BVB! Borussia Dortmund picked up a 3-1 (0-0) victory at FSV Mainz 05 on Matchday 14 of the Bundesliga. Aubameyang put the Black 'n' Yellows in front from a free-kick before Lewandowski scored twice from the spot to secure the win in a hard-fought match largely dominated by the home side.
Dennis-Julian Gottschlich reporting from Mainz
Mainz produced a courageous display in front of a capacity crowd of 34,000 at Coface-Arena and created many chances but lacked the clinical touch in front of goal. BVB turned the game on its head after 70 minutes when Aubameyang put the visitors in front with a superb free-kick. Choupo-Moting levelled the score four minutes later before Lewandowski netted twice from the spot to secure victory for Borussia.
Borussia Dortmund went into the game at 1. FSV Mainz following a 3-1 win over SSC Napoli in the UEFA Champions League and back-to-back defeats (2-1 at VfL Wolfsburg, 3-0 to Bayern Munich) in the Bundesliga. The home side had won three of their previous four league matches to move up from 14th to seventh in the table.
BVB were without Gündogan (rehab training), Schmelzer (calf strain) and Subotic (cruciate ligament). Friedrich started in central defence and, for the first time this season, Jürgen Klopp drafted Piszczek back into the starting line-up. Mainz coach Thomas Tuchel had to do without his two regular goalkeepers Wetklo (suspension) and Müller (hip problem), with 20-year-old Karius keeping goal. Bungert, Koch and Baumgartlinger were also not available.
Just as against Nuremberg, BVB lined up with a 4-3-3, with Kuba, Bender and Grosskreutz playing defensive roles in midfield, while Reus, Lewandowski and Aubameyang formed the front line. Mainz started with a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Okazaki and Müller putting in a lively performance.
The Game & Analysis:
The home side started the match brightly on the back of a solid defence and tried to put Borussia under pressure, though at first they only fashioned long-range opportunities from Pospech (9 mins.) and Geis (11) that Weidenfeller comfortably dealt with. The Dortmund goalkeeper also parried an overhead kick from Okazaki on 17 minutes, with Soho hitting the side netting two minutes later.
Relying on their own defensive capabilities, BVB sat back and looked to strike on the break, but they lacked the precision in the final third and failed to create any serious chances in the opening exchanges. Their only chance of note fell to Lewandowski who missed from a promising position at the edge on the six-yard box on 26 minutes.
Geis had a chance to put the home side in front shortly before the interval following a corner, but Weidenfeller was on hand to keep out the effort (42 mins.). The Black ‘n’ Yellows, who had been forced to replace Bender with Sahin after 32 minutes, had their best opportunity a few seconds later when Aubameyang tested Karius with a long-range shot that the Mainz goalkeeper just managed to push onto the bar (43 mins.).
Jürgen Klopp made two changes at half-time, bringing on Mkhitaryan and Kehl for Reus and Blaszczykowski, and the Dortmund coach also switched to a 4-2-3-1 formation after the break, with the two new players being deployed in the two holding midfield positions, while Grosskreutz and Aubameyang played on the wings and Mkhitaryan in the centre of midfield.
The second half still started as the first had finished with Mainz 05 dominating possession and putting BVB under pressure. The hosts could have gone in front early in the second half when Choupo-Moting unleashed a fierce strike from 20 yards, but Weidenfeller pulled off a great save to tip it around the post (48 mins.), while at the other end Grosskreutz went close with a shot from the edge of the box (57 mins.).
BVB increased the pressure a bit after 65 minutes and briefly managed to put the Mainz goal under threat, with their efforts being rewarded straight away. Durm surged towards the box before being brought down, and Aubameyang stepped up to take the resulting free-kick, curling it perfectly over the wall into the top left corner – 1-0 lead for BVB after 70 minutes. BVB’s joy, however, was short-lived as Mainz levelled the score again only two minutes later when Mali was brought down inside the box by Piszczek, prompting referee Aytekin to point to the spot. Choupo-Moting stepped up and slotted home to make it 1-1 (74 mins.).
BVB were not rocked by the goal and restored their lead a few minutes later when Aubameyang surged into the box before rounding Karius and slotting the ball into an empty net – or so everyone thought. But Soto had something against it and punched the ball off the line, leaving the referee no choice but to dismiss the Mainz player and award BVB a penalty. Lewandowski duly stepped up and coolly slotted into the bottom left corner to put BVB in front again (78 mins.). Mainz, with a man down, were still in the game and pushed for another equaliser, but Weidenfeller kept his goal intact. Lewandowski sealed the win in the fourth minute of stoppage time when he fired home his second penalty of the game following a foul on Durm by Mainz goalkeeper Karius.
Teams & Goals
Bundesliga, Matchday 14
1. FSV MAINZ 05 – BORUSSIA DORTMUND 1-3 (0-0)
1. FSV Mainz 05: Karius – Pospech, Bell, Noveski, Park - Geis, Soto - Polter, Zimling, Müller – Okazaki
Borussia Dortmund: Weidenfeller - Piszczek, Sokratis, Friedrich, Durm – Blaszczykowski, Bender, Großkreutz – Aubameyang, Lewandowski, Reus
Substitutions: 46. Choupo-Moting for Müller, - 32. Sahin for Bender, 46. Kehl and Mkhitaryan for Reus and Blaszczykowski
Goals: 0-1 Aubameyang (70., free-kick), 1-1 Choupo-Moting (74., penalty), 1-2 Lewandowski (penalty), 1-3 Lewandowski (90.+4, penalty)
Corners: 4-6 (HT 4-4), Chances: 6-5 (3-2)
Referee: Aytekin (Oberasbach), Red card: Soto (77., handball), Yellow card: Bell
Attendance: 34,000 (sold-out), Weather: cloudy, 5 degrees Celsius
Next up for Borussia Dortmund is a trip to Saarbrücken in the DFB Cup on Tuesday (kick-off: 2030 CET) before they take on Bayer Leverkusen at SIGNAL IDUNA PARK on Saturday, 7 December (1830 CET) in the weekend’s top game in the Bundesliga.