Borussia Dortmund's U19s failed to take the initiative in the first leg of the semi-final for the German A-Juniors Championship. A 1-2 defeat (1-0 at halftime) against 1860 Munich was witnessed by a record 15, 117 spectators at the Signal Iduna Park.

Dzenis Burnic in action.

Hannes Wolf's team started the game well. Pulisic managed to tear open a hole on the right-wing in the first minute of the match, but his pass to Serra found only his teammate's back. Larsen attempted a sideways scissor-kick ten minutes later, while Passlack then twice had the opportunity to take the game to 1-0. The up and coming professional sent a shot just over the bar (12'), before hitting the Munich goal's side-netting after Burnic had fed him with an excellent pass.

The guests found themselves on the back-foot defensively in the opening phase of the contest, but then went on to threaten dangerously on two occasions - Reimann saved brilliantly to deny Turk's headed shot on goal and stop the men from Munich from taking a 1-0 lead, while Neuhaus' shot from a distance of 16 metres was wide (39'). The effect on BVB, who had lost their concentration a little in front of most of the professional squad, was clear to see, and previous levels of focus were restored going into half-time. Pulisic subsequently sent a shot wide from an inside-right position 14 metres out (43'), before the referee awarded Dortmund a penalty after Hursan and BVB captain Schumacher had challenged for the ball, a decision felt to be harsh from Munich's perspective. Burnic converted from the spot practically on the stroke of half-time.

Defensive carelessness mercilessly punished

Christian Pulisic

The BVB youngsters seemed to have everything under control at the beginning of the second half, but, soon thereafter, Plattenhardt could not be stopped on the left-wing nor could his cross to Daferner be cleared. Surprisingly, the score stood at 1-1 after 55 minutes played. Wolf reacted, substituting almost the entire midfield; his team tried everything, penning in the 1860 boys almost continuously in their own half, but they failed to find a way through the South Bundesliga champions' tactically astute defence. Passlack subsequently came close twice from distance, once from a free-kick (73'), and then from 17 metres (80'), both shots just missing the target.

Burnic then lost the ball two minutes before the end of the match in the centre-circle; Munich's Neuhaus took aim and surprised Reimann with a 50 metre shot, bringing the game to 1-2. A cold shower indeed.

Progress into the final will be decided next week on Monday with the return leg in Munich (kick-off 14.30 CET). TSG Hoffenheim performed strongly in the first leg of the other semi-final, winning 3-1 against Werder Bremen.

BVB: Reimann – Scuderi (84' Laukart), Sahin, Pieper, Schumacher – Serra (56' Amenyido), Dietz (66' El-Bouazzati), Burnic, Larsen (59' Aydogan) – Pulisic, Passlack
Goals: 1-0 Burnic (45', penalty-kick), 1-1 Daferner (55'), 1-2 Neuhaus (88')

Boris Rupert