Unlucky youngsters Sergio Gómez and Alex Isak both failed from the spot as Borussia Dortmund were beaten on penalties in their third and final International Champions Cup match against Benfica. The Black & Yellows, who lost the shootout 4-3, had let a two-goal first-half lead through Maximilian Philipp slip to draw 2-2 in normal time.
A crowd of 16,161 spectators in Pittsburgh saw a strong opening half from BVB, for whom Philipp first threatened with a shot that went narrowly wide from 20 metres on the quarter-hour mark before breaking the deadlock five minutes later. Dahoud picked up the ball down the left flank and played it into the path of Schmelzer, who picked out Larsen. The Dane played a tidy one-two with Götze inside the penalty area and cut the ball back from the byline towards Philipp, who was waiting on the edge of the six-yard box and slotted home.
Another followed two minutes later, with Dahoud again key. Standing on the left touchline, the 22-year-old picked out Götze, who touched the ball down perfectly before lofting a ball over the defence to Philipp. The attacking midfielder timed his run perfectly to beat the offside trap and doubled the lead from eight metres out.
Götze the provider, Philipp the finisher
Borussia took to the field in a 4-1-4-1 formation with Sahin protecting the back four and a four-man offensive midfield in which Götze and Dahoud occupied the central positions − but were forced to drop deep whenever their opponents had possession.
A misplaced pass from Hitz on the half-hour mark handed the runners-up from last season's Portuguese Primeira Liga their first sight of goal, but Sahin was on hand to stop the opposition from taking full advantage. In first-half stoppage time, Pulisic made a storming run down the right flank but his cross into the box had a little too much on it for Bruun Larsen.
Benfica then pulled one back against the run of play five minutes after the interval when Almeida fired home from inside the box. Achraf Hakimi came off the bench to make his debut on the hour, but Lucien Favre left Marco Reus and Lukasz Piszczek on the bench.
In the 69th minute, Semedo shot from 25 metres and, though it was blocked, the rebound landed at the feet of the Benfica man who lashed it home to make it 2-2. Two minutes before the end, Sancho latched onto a long ball from midfield on the left and found himself in acres of space. But after cutting into the box, the Englishman's right-footed effort sailed two metres wide.
Hakimi makes debut, Reus and Piszczek rested
Wolf, Burnic and Sancho all dispatched their spot-kicks in the shootout, while Gómez hit the upright and Isak was denied by the keeper. Cervi then stepped up to wrap up the win for Benfica.
BVB: Hitz – Toljan (Hakimi, 62), Toprak (Dieckmann, 62), Diallo (Pieper, 62), Schmelzer (Zagadou, 46) – Sahin (Burnic, 62) – Pulisic (Wolf, 46), Götze (Gomez, 62), Dahoud (Rode, 62), Bruun Larsen (Sancho 62) – Philipp (Isak, 62)
Goals: 1-0 Philipp (20), 2-0 Philipp (22), 2-1 Almeida (50). 2-2 Alfa Semedo (69)
Penalty shootout: 1-0 Wolf, 1-1 Lema, Gomez misses, 1-2 Oliveira, 2-2 Burnic, 2-3 Ferreyra, 3-3 Sancho, Samaris misses, Isak misses, 3-4 Cervi
Attendance: 16,161 in Pittsburgh