1-0, 1-1, 2-1, 2-2, 3-2, 3-3, 3-4. Borussia Dortmund's match away in Leverkusen yesterday was the 1,836th Bundesliga game in club history. Only once before in 54 years of the Bundesliga had BVB managed to win a game in which they'd gone behind three times: that was in game number 955, on 22 September 1995. 

26 years ago there were wild scenes in Frankfurt's Waldstadion, as Andreas Möller, Michael Zorc and Heiko Herrlich all scored equalisers to negate Eintracht's three leads before Lars Ricken scored in the 82nd minute to make it 4-3 to BVB.

Although they achieved something historic in Leverkusen yesterday, the players were in no mood to party in the dressing room after the final whistle. Instead, the mood was rather subdued. On the one hand, because ''the win cost us a lot of energy,'' as Marco Reus noted. On the other hand, because ''we can't always score three or four goals,'' as the captain also commented in reference to the avoidable goals conceded. There was a lack of assertiveness and concentration for both the first and second goals. Marco Rose was happy about the spirit shown by his team as well as the result and the associated three points. But his enthusiasm was also restrained. ''From the coach's point of view, of course, you wish it was different,'' he said about the spectacular game in Leverkusen, adding: ''We're conceding too many goals.'' 

After four matchdays, the Black & Yellows have scored 13 goals and conceded nine. No other team have scored more. ''Sometimes you just have to play,'' commented Nobby Dickel on Netradio after Erling Haaland's equaliser to make it 1-1: ''Ball out wide, cross, header goal. That's how it's done!'' Goals number two and three were more spectacular. Each was a feast for the eyes! First, Julian Brandt controlled a not-so-clean Haaland pass with technical brilliance, taking the ball down with his heel, shifting it in front of him and then slamming it into the roof of the net at full speed. Then Raphael Guerreiro stepped up to take a free-kick from approximately 22 metres out, curling it perfectly over the wall and into the top corner of the net. Goal number four was a confident, powerful penalty.

"It's been a long time since I scored a free kick. It was a good moment for the team to come back into the game," said Raphael Guerreiro about his goal. Then Julian Brandt gave an insight into his thoughts: "Their goal just before half-time, which I was partly to blame for, really annoyed me. It was satisfying for me to give something back to the team. The goal was really beautiful. It was also a massive weight off my shoulders.

Both players took a similar view of things. "A game like that is great for the fans, but it's especially nerve-wracking for the coach," said Brandt. "We should make sure that we are more secure at the back in the next games. It's good for us to have games in which we are dominant and don't concede any goals. We are still happy. Anything is better than losing." And Guerreiro added: "It's always good for confidence, but we have to work better defensively."

Therefore, the historic match number 1,836 was no occasion for unadulterated joy.

Boris Rupert