In what was one of the most uneventful games for Dortmund so far this season, BVB dominated possession yet could not find the back of the net in a 0-0 draw against Club Brugge in Champions League play. Dortmund is now 2 points back of Atletico Madrid in the group, but did officially clinch a spot in the final 16 with the draw. Club Brugge clinched a spot in the Europa League with the Monaco loss earlier in the day to Atletico, but are now officially eliminated from advancing in the Champions league.
Heading into the game, Lucien Favre again had the luxury rotating players in to the starting eleven with hardly any drop off in talent. Paco Alcacer rotated back into the starting lineup as did Christian Pulisic and Raphael Guerreiro on the wings and Dahoud in midfield and Diallo for Hakimi at left back.
From the start, it was clear this wasn’t going to be the most riveting of games. Club Brugge sat back the entire half on defense, while Dortmund dominated possession and patiently awaited any weakness they could find. Unfortunately, Brugge did not offer many chances to exploit and held firm for the entire half with the score remaining 0-0 heading into the 2nd half.
The few bright spots in the first half included chances from Pulisic and Reus. Early in the half Pulisic was set up perfectly by Reus but ended up directing his shot at the keeper. Pulisic later managed to blow by Brugge defender Denswil only to be taken down by Denswil for a yellow card.
Reus had an opportunity after beating his man for a through ball from Alcacer but directed his shot just wide of the goal. Pulisic played with the most urgency, while the team as a whole seemed to be getting frustrated. Guerreiro blasted a useless shot from distance and Alcacer had a couple lazy tackles, one for a yellow at the end of the half
The second half was much of the same as Brugge continued to park the bus. A couple decent opportunities from Dortmund were deflected out, a great sequence between Pulisic and Sancho ended up with a shot skyed into the stands by Alcacer, and Dortmund never could find the back of the net. Sancho came on in the 72nd minute to try to provide an offensive spark but was mostly silent. Hakimi came on in the final ten minutes and Delaney replaced Witsel who seemed to be cramping late, but nothing would help. Pulisic made a great effort in the final seconds to force a corner, but again it was cleared away.
This was certainly not the result desired, and it will need to be addressed why Brugge managed to have so much success in two games against BVB. If Dortmund wants to be great, they need to be able to score goals against weak teams parking the bus. The team will look to get back on track as they return to action in the Bundesliga this Saturday against 11th place Freiburg. They finish up the group stage in the Champions league at Monaco on Tuesday, December 11th.