Match in a sentence
A late equalizer from Mats Hummels has given Borussia Dortmund a deserved tie and two away goals to bring back to the Westfalenstadion in three weeks time.
- Jurgen Klopp’s men opted to play in a 4-2-3-1 with Robert Lewandowski leading the line, and Marco Reus, Mario Gotze and Jakub Blaszczykowski behind him. Felipe Santana and Sven Bender replaced the injured Neven Subotic and Ilkay Gundogan.
- Mircea Lucescu’s men also lined up in a 4-2-3-1 with Luiz Adriano leading the line and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Taison and Alex Teixeira behind him. Fernandinho and Tomas Hubschman protected the backline in Shakhtar’s first competitive match in over two months.
- Both sides played in identical systems, but with different approaches to the match. Shakhtar was unable to dominate in possession due to Dortmund’s high pressure, which allowed Dortmund to dictate the game in terms of possession. Shakhtar was shaped in a 4-1-4-1 when Dortmund had possession, hoping to break on the counter. Dymytro Chygrynskiy and Yaroslav Rakitskiy was forced to hit balls out wide to Taison, Srna or Teixeira, as they couldn’t get Fernandinho on the ball due to Dortmund’s pressure.
- Despite all the pressure, Dortmund was unable to create any clear-cut goal scoring chances. Dortmund did look dangerous when going forward as Reus terrorized defenders when he picked the ball up from deep, Blaszczykowski had a few chances stopped by Andriy Pyatov and Hummel’s rattled the cross bar from a corner kick.
- Shakhtar took the lead in the 31st minute courtesy of a Darijo Srna free kick that flew past Roman Weidenfeller. Unfortunately for Lucescu’s side, their lead lasted 10 minutes as Lewandowski equalized. Lewandowski’s failed miskick dropped two Shakhtar defenders and the Polish striker coolly slotted his shot past Pyatov. Shakhtar defenders could only blame themselves for the goal, seeing as they failed to clear their lines.
- In the first half Sebastian Kehl and Bender dictated the midfield, but Gotze and Taison were the key players. Gotze was getting the ball in between the lines (drifting to the right) and it caused the Shakhtar defenders a few headaches. While Taison stormed down the left flank several times, always looking a danger when the ball was at his feet. Taison attacked the space that Lukasz Piszczek left available when he surged forward. Piszczek was more cautious when getting forward in the second half and usually did when Gotze freed space up for an overlap.
- Lucescu made the first change in the second half replacing Taison (their best player on the pitch) with Douglas Costa. It was more of a tactical change for Lucescu as Alex Teixeira moved to the left and Costa pushed to the right. Shakhtar became an odd shaped 4-3-2-1 when they didn’t have the ball as Costa tucked into the midfield. If Srna didn’t bomb forward it opened up space for Fernandinho to attack.
- Shakhtar took the lead once again and it came from the sub Costa. Hummel’s failed to deal with a simple ball over the top, Costa shrugged off Marcel Shmelzer and struck his shot past Weidenfeller. Costa’s first touch was superb, but the shot was even better.
- Dortmund applied more pressure, but this time on the flanks as Costa’s introduction nullified Bender and Kehl’s control of the midfield. With three minutes to go they got their winner, from an unmarked thunderous Hummel’s header that Pyatov could only dream of saving.
- Hummel’s not only made up for his error that caused the second goal, but it provided Dortmund with a fantastic away draw. Dortmund now head to the Westfalenstadion as favourites and Lucescu’s men will feel like they let this match slip away.
- Lucescu himself has an issue with Taison, who looks like a great replacement for Willian. Will Taison and Douglas Costa start in three weeks? Klopp will be looking to get a better performance from his men in three weeks time, because this Shakhtar team is more than capable of getting a result in Germany. It was a first leg that was overshadowed by Manchester United – Real Madrid, but in terms of the quality of football the match was fantastic and the second leg will be even better.
- Mats Hummels – “It is important that we are going into the second leg level and a 0-0 would see us through.”