The Borussia Dortmund U17s maintained their place at the top of the B-Junior Bundesliga West with a 0-0 draw away to VfL Bochum. The team kept a clean sheet for the fifth game in a row. "We'll take the point, but we're a little frustrated not to be rewarded with the three points for a good and dominant second half," explained coach Marco Lehmann following an enthralling and intense Little Derby.

BVB failed to find the back of the net for the first time this season. Goalscorer Diego Ngambia Dzonga, who has netted 12 times in eight games, complained of groin problems in the final training session and of strong pain on the day of the game. "The risk of playing him was too great. We of course missed him. We're confident he'll be able to play again against 1. FC Köln on Friday," said Lehmann. The striker was initially replaced by Joshua Burstedde, with Ousmane Diallo then moving into the middle after a quarter-hour and Burstedde attacking down the left flank.

The two teams cancelled each other out in a hard-fought and balanced first period. Bochum, who had already achieved notable results in Leverkusen (2-2) and against top title favourites Schalke 04 (1-1), put in a real shift and were denied two or three times by BVB goalkeeper Leon Herdes. "We played with a lot of heart but struggled to find footballing solutions against a very compactly defending opponent. That said, we also had our opportunities in an average first half," analysed Lehmann. Dortmund's main issue was with a dismissed penalty claim in the 44th minute when Nick Cherny was fouled in the penalty area.

BVB better in the second half

Borussia played significantly better and more dominantly after the interval. They did not allow their opposition any opportunities and pushed VfL back into their own half with long spells of possession. But Ousmane Diallo, Len Wörsdörfer and Nick Cherny all failed to take good chances, as did Justin Hoy shortly before the final whistle. "More was possible but one must acknowledge that Bochum were a very unpleasant opponent. We embraced the fight offered up by VfL, held our own and can live with the point," summarised head coach Lehmann.

Up next for the U17s is their Bundesliga top match against 1. FC Köln, which was been brought forward to Friday (6 October, 18:00 CET). That will be followed by the two-week international break. (wiwi)

U17s: Herdes – Cena (Wörsdörfer, 68), Meiser, Benkara, Feddersen – Driedger, Degener – Cherny, Fritz (Schwarz, 81) Diallo (Hoy, 88) – Burstedde.