Borussia Dortmund’s title hopes are in peril. BVB’s defeat at Augsburg’s hands mean that Bayern Munich can draw even with Dortmund at the top of the table with a win against Borussia Mönchengladbach later today.
For the first time in a whise, BVB really were the better side for much of the game. Unfortunately, Augsburg were able to capitalize on two individual mistakes, and despite a late surge, BVB couldn’t come back.
Here are our match ratings:
Roman Bürki: 6
Bürki made two relatively easy saves, and wasn’t exactly to blame for either Augsburg goal. It’s not that he did anything wrong, it’s just that he didn’t do anything great either.
Achraf Hakimi: 4
In a repeat of his performance against Tottenham Hotspur, Hakimi was shaky once again. His turnover that led to Augsburg’s second goal was a dreadful, lazy pass through midfield that no elite full back should make. He was far from effective going forward.
Dan-Axel Zagadou: 3
Unfortunately, it was a night to forget from Dan-Axel Zagadou. BVB fans will surely rush to criticize DAZ for his mistake that led to Augsburg’s first goal, a point which I won’t belabor too much. Getting chipped by Dong-Won Ji also wasn’t a great look, even though he was probably doing the right thing in staying in front of Ji and preventing him from cutting towards the near-post.
Manuel Akanji: 6
In a night full of dreadful defending, Akanji was BVB’s least ineffectual defender. He did make a couple nice tackles and looked okay on the ball. He was able to block Ji’s first shot in the 27th minute, but couldn’t get up in time to stop the Korean’s second attempt.
Axel Witsel: 6
It says something about Axel Witsel’s performances this season that a 6 is so uncharacteristically low for him. His touches were notably heavy all night. Augsburg did a good job keeping him isolated in midfield, and Delaney failed to provide any passing outlet whatsoever.
Thomas Delaney: 4
Delaney’s role in midfield was...
wait for it...
From Gregory’s article:
And if the opposition sits back and attempts to limit the influence of Witsel in the middle of the park, Delaney is a liability going forward. Attempting to play with 70% possession against a low block side and almost playing with a man down is counter intuitive.
To all the people (who completely missed the point of the article) who say things like “DeLAneY is ReDunDanT” after Delaney delivers a good performance against teams that press high, this match is exactly what Greg was talking about.
Unsurprisingly, no arrow pointing forward from Thomas Delaney.— Stefan Buczko (@StefanBuczko) March 1, 2019
Arguably, Favre should have stuck with Weigl in midfield for this game. https://t.co/7nUUlDMg5A
Jadon Sancho: 5
I’ll be honest, I completely forgot that Sancho played last night. He was completely invisible for most of the night, although he did help set up Alcacer’s goal with a neat cutback to Götze.
Marco Reus: 5
Reus had a golden opportunity in the 7th minute, but shot right into the Augsburg keeper. He looks like he’s still a bit rust from his time injured.
Jacob Bruun Larsen: 5
JBL had a chance to win back his starting spot from earlier in the season. Unfortunately, JBL didn’t do much to earn further playing time in the near future. He had a couple fleeting moments of offensive dynamism, but more often than not, they went nowhere.
Mario Götze: 8
Super-Mario was BVB’s best starter by a considerable margin. In the 74th minute, he lobbed a picture-perfect floated ball into the box. Paco did a good job bringing it down and taking a shot, but Augsburg keeper Gregor Kobel was equal to the task. He also assisted Paco’s goal that counted, even though it was too little too late.
Maximillian Philipp: 6
Philipp came on in the 75th minute. Even though he played in his more natural position on the wing, he couldn’t do anything to turn the tide of the game.
Raphael Guerreiro: 6
Much like Maxi Philipp, Guerreiro was ineffectual off the bench.
Paco Alcacer: 7
If there’s any positive to take out of this match, it’s that Paco Alcacer got his goal. I actually think he looked very good in the limited time he was on the pitch. He hasn’t been that poor during his cold stretch, his chances just haven’t been going in. It was nice to see him get on the score sheet.
Come on you Foals, am I right? Leave your thoughts below.