A crowd of 1,260 fans in the Rote Erde stadium watched an intense 3. Liga match-up between table-toppers FC Magdeburg and third-placed Borussia Dortmund. In the end, the visitors from Saxony-Anhalt ran out 2-0 (0-0) winners. This was the Black & Yellows' first home defeat of the season.
Before the game: There was a reunion with former BVB youth players Tim Sechelmann and Dominik Reimann, who spent 13 and 12 years respectively in the Dortmund youth performance centre and also played for the BVB U23s during their time at the club.
The opposition: The visitors from Saxony-Anhalt had got off to an excellent start this season. The team led by coach Christian Titz kicked off the campaign with five wins, one draw and just one loss (away to 1. FC Saarbrücken). In their most recent game, a meeting with fellow historic club 1. FC Kaiserslautern, they won 1-0 in front of a home crowd of 15,000 fans.
Personnel matters: BVB coach Enrico Maaßen made two changes to the starting line-up, with Ted Tattermusch and Lennard Maloney coming in to replace Timo Bornemann and Marco Pasalic.
The match: The visitors from Magdeburg were the quicker out the blocks and managed to push BVB back into their own half in the opening stages. After just two minutes Niklas Dams had to make a clearance off the goal line. BVB had to wait 14 minutes for their first shot on goal, a long-range effort from Berkan Taz which posed little problem for Dominik Reimann in the away goal. Just one minute later, Ole Pohlmann came closer to finding the opening goal, but he wasn't able to hit the target from a tight angle.
Magdeburg had the slight upper-hand. Both sides looked to bypass the midfield at speed. The result was a lot of changes in possession. The away side's best chance came in the 38th minute, but Dortmund goalkeeper Stefan Drljaca did well to make a double-save to deny Schuler. As it was, the two sides went in at the break with the score tied at 0-0 and Magdeburg slightly on top.
The visitors also managed to get off to a better start in the second half. Jan-Luca Schuler found space in behind the Dortmund rearguard and chipped the ball over Drljaca in the Dortmund goal to make it 1-0. Just six minutes later, Baris Atik extended the lead to 2-0: Magdeburg's leading goalscorer found the top-right corner with a free-kick.
The Black & Yellows looked to get more men forward in response, but try as they might, they couldn't breach Magdeburg's well-organised defence. The visitors were full of confidence and used their experience to their advantage. A long-range shot by substitute Timo Bornemann in the 75th minute was the closest BVB had come to scoring.
BVB threw everything they had at Magdeburg, but they still couldn't find a route to goal. Attacks broke down due to a lack of precision in the final third. Magdeburg were able to make the most of a good phase after the interval and will travel home to Saxony deserving of all three points.
BVB U23s: Drljaca – Maloney, Tattermusch (62, Bornemann), Taz, Tachie, Papadopoulos (57, Raschl), Pohlmann (46, Makreckis), Finnsson (57, Viet), Pfanne, Pherai (57, Kamara), Dams
Goals: 0-1 Schuler (50), 0-2 Atik (56)
What's next : The U23s are away to Wehen Wiesbaden next Monday (kick-off 19:00 CET).