Borussia Dortmund claimed a 3-1 victory over Seattle Sounders on the first stop of their USA Tour, with Marius Wolf, Paco Alcácer and substitute Jadon Sancho getting the goals. After the final whistle had sounded, the Black & Yellows took time to thank the almost 8,000 BVB fans in the stadium.
With 38,000 spectators watching on at CenturyLink Field, Lucien Favre's charges looked lively from the first whistle and created a slew of excellent goalscoring opportunities. A drilled effort from Marius Wolf put BVB ahead on the 36-minute mark, before Paco Alcácer doubled the advantage with a delicate lob at the beginning of the second half (50). Jonathan Campbell pulled a goal back for the Sounders only five minutes later, but substitute Jadon Sancho put the result beyond doubt when he added a third 13 minutes from time.
When choosing his starting line-up, head coach Lucien Favre opted to give youth a chance, with Immanuel Pherai (18), Mateu Morey (19), Tobias Raschl (19) and Leonardo Balerdi (20) all given starts. Playing on unfamiliar terrain - an artificial grass pitch - it was perhaps understandable that the young BVB XI needed some time to acclimatise in the opening stages of the match. Nonetheless, Pherai was able to make a strong impression, firing just wide of the mark in the 18th minute and then providing an excellent cross for Alcacer just a few minutes later. Down the other end, the second-placed team in the Western Conference were kept out first by the upright (27.) and then by the linesman, who ruled out a 35th minute goal for offside.
Wolf with the opening goal
It was a let off for the Black & Yellows, clad entirely in black for the encounter, who were then to take the lead shortly afterwards. Götze teed up Wolf, who duly provided the finish to make it 1-0 in the 37th minute. 16-year-old Giovanni Reyna, who came on to replace Pherai shortly before the interval, had a good chance to score with his head on the cusp of half time. He was however unable to convert and so it was that BVB's lead remained at one goal.
After the break and a further substitution (Guerreiro for Piszczek, with Morey shifting from left-back to right-back), Borussia were able to capitalise on a goalkeeping blunder: Alcácer pounced on the loose ball and deftly chipped it into the net to bring the score to 2-0 on the 50 minute mark. However, the drama was far from over, as Campbell got his head on the end of a corner to pull one back for the hosts (55.).
With the clock reading 61 minutes, Favre made nine changes. Captain Marco Reus made an appearance, as did new signings Schulz, Brandt and Hazard, all of whom were making their debuts for the club. The formation switched from a 4-2-3-1 to a 4-3-3. Although a narrow offside call against Reus denied Hazard a first-ever goal in Black & Yellow, an eye-catching solo goal from Jadon Sancho re-established a two goal lead 15 minutes before the end. Favre's side were then able to create several other good opportunities to further extend their lead in what remained of the match.
Alcácer and Sancho on target in the second half
Lucien Favre said the following in his post-match interview: ''We're not used to playing on artificial grass. It's like playing a different game altogether. But overall we did a good job. We had excellent tempo in our play against a side that had a lot of running in them.'' Roman Bürki also shared his thoughts: ''We're happy with the result of our first real test. We were able to implement that which we'd set out to do. We played the ball out from the back with real composure.''
BVB: Bürki – Piszczek (46. Guerreiro), Balerdi (63. Hummels), Toprak (63. Zagadou), Morey (63. Schulz) – Weigl (63. Witsel) – Wolf (63. Sancho), Raschl (63. Delaney), Götze (63. Reus), Pherai (34. Reyna/63. Brandt) – Alcacer (63. Hazard)
Goals: 0-1 Wolf (37.), 0-2 Alcácer (50.), 1-2 Campbell (55.), 1-3 Sancho (77.)