Borussia Dortmund have taken their first match-point! The Group F leaders claimed a 3-1 (1-1) away victory over AC Milan thanks to goals from Reus, Bynoe-Gittens and Adeyemi on Matchday 5 of the UEFA Champions League and prematurely qualified for the round of Europe's best 16 teams.

Boris Rupert reporting

Two penalties in the space of five minutes: while Milan's Olivier Giroud missed from the spot (6), Marco Reus converted his kick to make it 1-0 to BVB (10), who subsequently had the game under control and created chances but allowed the hosts to level the scores through Samuel Chukwueze eight minutes before the break. Jamie Bynoe-Gittens, who had earlier won the penalty, put the Black & Yellows back in front after almost an hour, with substitute Karim Adeyemi increasing the lead to 3-1 10 minutes later.

The scenario:   
Only three points separated the teams in places one to four: Borussia Dortmund topped the Group F standings with seven points ahead of Paris Saint-Germain (6), AC Milan (5) and Newcastle United (4). BVB had won their two most recent matches in the group, while Milan had achieved their first triumph at the fourth attempt by beating Paris Saint-Germain 2-1. The reverse fixture had finished in a 0-0 draw. "We want to be the team that ends the match as winners," said Edin Terzic.

Personnel matters:   
The coach only had to make one change to the starting line-up following the 4-2 victory on Saturday, with Donyell Malen replacing Julian Brandt, who was carrying a minor knock (bench); Nico Schlotterbeck, who had been unable to take part in the final training session the day before due to a cold, declared himself fit. Niklas Süle (ill), Felix Nmecha (hip injury) and Julien Duranville (fitness training) were unavailable.

Milan lined up in an asymmetrical 4-2-3-1 formation in which Pulisic operated between the lines in a centre-left position and vacated the left flank to allow space for attacking full-back Hernandez. BVB also took to the field in a 4-2-3-1, with clear positioning: Bynoe-Gittens (left) and Malen (right) occupied the wings, while Reus played centrally.


The match & analysis:
Milan pressed from the beginning, tried to turn the game in their favour and got themselves into a dangerous position in the Dortmund box for the first time in the fifth minute. But Giroud, the centre-forward, could not reach the ball on the six-yard box. Seconds later, Ryerson lost possession, Chukwueze shot from the edge of the box and struck Schlotterbeck's arm. To the Borussia players' horror and the astonishment of many (rules) experts, referee Kovacs pointed to the penalty spot. But the luck soon evened itself out: Kobel got down to the right corner and saved the shot!

However, the Romanian referee proved to be just as keen to take decisions in the ninth minute. Calabria had left his leg in on Bynoe-Gittens – a clear call: penalty. Reus assumed the responsibility and swept the ball into the top-left corner to open the scoring at 1-0. Milan were clearly affected, the stadium grew several decibels quieter and the Black & Yellows attacked courageously - mostly down the left via Bynoe-Gittens, who got through to the byline in the 19th minute, then cut back and sought a one-on-one with Calabria, which he won, before firing narrowly over the frame of the goal from a centre-left position eight metres out. Midway through the first period, goalkeeper Maignan was on hand to clear a cross fizzed in by Malen – once again from the left side of the attack (24).


BVB got themselves into good attacking and even shooting situations on several occasions. One example was in the 16th minute through Sabitzer, whose shot from 18 metres was not powerful or placed enough, however. Rather than 2-0, it was 1-1 soon afterwards. Chukwueze asserted himself in the box and found the far corner (37). It was not well defended and was doubly frustrating because Milan, who had looked overwhelmed, now came back into it.

The Italians came out of the dressing rooms with plenty of power, very often attacking down their right flank like in the first half. Ryerson had to thwart a dangerous moment to deny Pulisic early on (49). Hummels won many important challenges and largely held the defence, which did reveal several gaps on the left, together.

Both teams lost a central defender early on. Thiaw clutched his thigh following a sprint against Bynoe-Gittens, while Schlotterbeck was also unable to continue a short while later. Can slotted into the defence, with substitute Özcan taking his position in midfield.


Bensebaini and Ryerson teamed up to thwart the breakthrough made by Loftus-Cheek (57). An important intervention! Instead, the net rippled at the other end: Reus and Füllkrug were involved in the move in the centre-right channel, Sabitzer squared it to Bynoe-Gittens in the box and he kept his cool from 14 metres to make it 2-1 (59). It was the 19-year-old's first Champions League goal (the lead story in the new edition of "Borussia" on Friday!).

The next counter was also converted. Füllkrug held up a long ball from defence deep into the opposition half and fed the ball to Reus, who had the vision to pick out substitute Adeyemi. He unleashed a powerful strike from precisely 16 metres; Maignan could not keep hold of it and only got to the ball at the second attempt once it had crossed the line. BVB held a 3-1 lead with 20 minutes to go. Things could have gotten exciting again with five minutes to go, but Jovic was denied by the post of the Dortmund goal, seconds after Füllkrug had directed a header narrowly over the crossbar. Füllkrug then ended up striking the woodwork in the 87th minute when he thundered Adeyemi's assist against the bar.

Teams & goals


UEFA Champions League Matchday 5

AC Mailand: Maignan – Calabria, Thiaw (Krunic, 53), Tomori, T. Hernandez – Adli (Jovic, 76), Reijnders – Chukwueze (Traoré, 76), Loftus-Cheek, Pulisic – Giroud
Bor. Dortmund: Kobel – Ryerson, Hummels, Schlotterbeck (Özcan, 56), Bensebaini – Can, Sabitzer – Malen (Adeyemi, 56), Reus (Brandt, 79), Bynoe-Gittens (Wolf, 66) – Füllkrug
Substitutes: Mirante, Nava; Bartesaghi, Florenzi, Pobega – Meyer, Lotka; Moukoko, Haller, Reyna, Blank
Goals: 0-1 Reus (pen. for foul on Bynoe-Gittens by Calabria, 9), 1-1 Chukwueze (Calabria, 37), 1-2 Bynoe-Gittens (Sabitzer, 59), 1-3 Adeyemi (Reus, 69)
Noteworthy incidents: Kobel saves penalty from Giroud (Schlotterbeck handball, 6)
Corners: 10-1 (3-0 at half-time), chance ratio: 6-6 (3-2)
Referee: Kovacs (Romania), yellow card: Tomori
Attendance: 75,817 (sold-out), weather: dry, 2 degrees