"It was a good test," said Lucien Favre after BVB won their opening game of the International Champions Cup. His team beat English champions Manchester City 1-0 (1-0) in the early hours of Saturday morning, though both teams have only just started their pre-season preparations.
"We implemented a lot of what the coach wants to see," said Marcel Schmelzer after the match, which was watched by 34,629 spectators at Soldier Field in Chicago, adding: "The second and third day are a bit difficult due to the jet lag. There's still a seven-hour time difference from what we're used to. With that in mind, it [the win] was really good." Kick-off was at 03:05 CET.
Coach Lucien Favre, who kept his promise of changing the entire team apart from goalkeeper Marwin Hitz at half-time, was entirely satisfied with the performance. "We showed some good link-up play and we dared to go forward. We won the ball back well. I like it when we take risks with the ball at our feet."
In the 12th minute, Larsen touched down a cross on the left of the penalty area and nudged the ball into the path of Götze, whose powerful left-footed strike was kept out by custodian Bravo. Isak initiated the next noteworthy attack down the right flank seven minutes later, but Schmelzer's effort was blocked.
Borussia, who were in the ascendancy and had the better chances going forward, got their reward in the 27th minute when Oleksandr Zinchenko felled Christian Pulisic in the box and the referee pointed to the spot. Mario Götze – slightly fortunately – dispatched the ensuing spot-kick to make it 1-0 to Dortmund, who could have extended their lead five minutes before the break: Isak received the ball from Pulisic but the angle was too narrow and his shot from the corner of the six-yard box hit the side-netting.
Manchester City, whose side included a number of young players, initially only posed a threat from set-pieces. One such incident came on the stroke of half-time, when goalkeeper Marwin Hitz made a strong save to deny Riyad Mahrez from a free-kick around 18 metres out. Another free-kick sailed narrowly wide 10 minutes into the second period.
That second free-kick was preceded by a shot from Dahoud, who found himself with few passing options at his disposal and decided to go it alone from 20 metres. The shot went narrowly wide. At the other end, Hitz was on hand to thwart Lukas Nmecha from close range (69).
The last opportunity of the match was created by BVB. Sancho cut the ball back from the byline to Dahoud in the penalty area. He shot immediately but Hart made the save and Philipp's follow-up narrowly missed the target (71).
BVB First Half: Hitz – Bockhorn, Toprak, Zagadou, Schmelzer – Rode, Burnic – Pulisic, Götze, Larsen – Isak
BVB Second Half: Hitz – Toljan, Pieper, Diallo, Dieckmann – Sahin – Wolf, Dahoud, Gomez, Sancho – Philipp
Goal: 0-1 Götze (penalty awarded for a foul, 28)
Attendance: 34,629 in Chicago