The Borussia Dortmund Bundesliga youth teams have continued their successful streaks. The U19s claimed a 4-1 victory away to Viktoria Köln and extended their lead over third-placed Bayer Leverkusen (0-0 against MSV Duisburg) to 13 points, while the U17s recorded a convincing 8-1 win against VfB Waltrop and remain hot on the heels of the leading duo from Leverkusen and Gelsenkirchen.

The A-Junior Bundesliga leaders needed the first half to adjust to the artificial grass pitch in Cologne. Köln initially caused the Black & Yellows one embarrassment after another with their quick switch play and long balls. "We defended carelessly," criticised coach Mike Tullberg, who felt compelled to make personnel changes early on.

BVB did start the match well. Danylo Krevsun, who started at centre-forward and later occupied the right-back berth, scored an early opening goal to make it 1-0 in the sixth minute. Viktoria swiftly hit back and restored parity at 1-1 through Said El Mala (13) and even missed a penalty that was awarded for a foul by goalkeeper Robin Lisewski. Cole Campbell might have put BVB back in front in the 27th minute, but that scoreline flattered the Black & Yellows and did not do justice to the courageous performance from the home team in the first half.

Mike Tullberg, who had to contend with the absence of several players due to illness in training this week, found the right words during the break. His tactical tweaks worked too. "The team deserves praise for their running and combative performance in the second half," he said with satisfaction at the end. Paris Brunner and the again-outstanding captain Kjell Wätjen completed the scoring.

BVB will play their rescheduled fixture away to second-placed Schalke 04 on Wednesday (21 February at 18:30 CET). Tullberg is hoping to have William Rashidi and Leonardo Posadas, who was substituted early with a muscle injury in Cologne, at his disposal again for the derby.

BVB U19s: Lisewski – Korzynietz, Meiser (Adamczyk, 18), Posadas (Benkara, 40), Kabar (Niziolek, 46) – Lubach, Wätjen – Onofrietti (Cherny, 75), Krevsun, Campbell (Ubani, 75)– Brunner

Fritz Fleck in irresistible form

A great display from Fritz Fleck led the Borussia U17s to an 8-1 victory against VfB Waltrop, who did not stand a chance. The technically gifted midfielder made it 1-0 and then scored a hat-trick in the second half with the goals for 4-0, 5-0 and 6-0, before following that up with the goal for 7-0. The remaining goals were scored by Oskar Schwarz (3-0) and Jonah Markötter (8-1). Waltrop also conceded an own goal (2-0) following a corner from Justin Hoy. The bottom team in the table scored a consolation goal when Mika Nowroth converted a penalty in the 84th minute to make it 7-1.

Luca Reggiani made his debut for BVB. The captain of the Italy U16 national team formed a central defensive partnership with Jamie Nwofor and was hardly challenged by the visitors, who were toothless in attack. Coach Marco Lehmann was without winter signings Thierry Tazemeta (whitlow) and Taycan Eticibasi (back injury). In addition to Anas Mahjoubi and Diego Ngambia, who are still injured, Tyler Meiser, Elias Benkara, Ousmane Diallo and Nick Cherny were promoted to the U19s.

It took until the 29th minute for Fleck to break through the packed Waltrop defence and open the scoring with a fine individual effort. Thanks to their flexible positional play and the aforementioned midfielder, who was in impressive form, Borussia repeatedly found gaps in the visiting defence and squandered top-class chances in the opening stages in particular. "It was a very convincing performance from the very first minute. We showed the desire to play and the desire to defend. Fritz Fleck was outstanding, but Tim Degener also had a really strong game," said Marco Lehmann. The U17s will pay a visit to Viktoria Köln next Sunday.

BVB U17s: Herdes – Cena (Riedl, 64), Nwofor (Burstedde, 83), Reggiani, Feddersen (Vrljic, 75) – Kaba -Fleck, Blaszczyk (Markötter, 46), Degener, Schwarz – Hoy (Ucar, 75).

(wiwi)