- Champions League
There were a lot of positives in Dortmund’s 2:1 win against PSG yesterday, the defense was great (except for Zagadou’s slip that led to the goal), the Can-Witsel pivot seems to stabilize the team, Sancho was once again a threat throughout the entire match and Lucien Favre outcoached Thomas Tuchel. However, the biggest story was Erling Haaland and his brace to secure the win against the French team. Especially his second goal was an absolute stunner and gives BVB a realistic chance to advance to the next round.
In the second match of the night, Jürgen Klopp and Liverpool got a reminder what a loss actually feels like. The Reds are still unbeaten in the Premier League but lost to a scrappy Atletico Madrid side in the round of sixteen and are now on the brink of elimination. Liverpool can turn around seemingly every result at Anfield, last years Barcelona-match is proof of that, but it is a different story against Diego Simeone and his defensively stout Atletico. This will be a very interesting return leg.
⏰ RESULTS ⏰— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) February 18, 2020
So. Much. Drama!
Haaland double gives Dortmund first-leg lead
⚪ Atlético ahead in tie via Saúl Ñíguez goal
Who impressed you tonight?#UCL
Today the competition continues with Atalanta hosting Valncia and the second Bundesliga side RB Leipzig traveling to London to meet Tottenham Hotspur.
Hans-Joachim Watzke praised Erling Haaland after his performance yeatserday and talked about a possible psychological advantage in the second leg:
“Erling is just having fun and has an incredible will. The way he scores the second goal, you can already see that he absolutely wants to make it. He is a real scorer, of course we are really happy that we have him. I think we have a good chance in Paris. However, we assume that Paris will also be very strong there. But they probably still have the déjà vu from last year in mind. Because for them, the world collapses when they get knocked out. So maybe we have a slight psychological advantage.”
Meanwhile Emre Can, who already looks like a fantastic addition to the squad, praised the entire team and thinks BVB can advance to the next round:
“It was a very, very good game from everyone on the pitch. We defended extremely well. We have had a lot of good attacks. Compliments to the team. If everyone contributes their part, we are good, no matter which team it is against. We won the game today, but it’s only half time now. We still have a game ahead of us in Paris, which will be extremely difficult. But I am sure that we can do it if we work as a team as hard as we do today.”
- Dortmund activate Can’s buyout clause
That certainly didn’t take long!
Borussia Dortmund have officially made Emre Can’s transfer from Juventus permanent, the midfielder will sign a contract until 2024 with the black and yellows.
Borussia Dortmund have been medeningly inconsistent throughout the entire season and despite a convincing performance in the Champions League, Lucien Favre is still on shaky ground. Unless BVB can win a major title this season it looks likely that there will be a coaching change this summer.
According to Neunzigplus BVB are keeping an eye on Erik ten Hag from Ajax Amsterdam as a possible successor for the Swiss coach this summer. Matthias Sammer, who is working as an advisor for the club and was the driving force behind the Emre Can-transfer, is looking for alternatives for Favre and is still in contact with ten Hag after hiring him to coach Bayern’s reserve team in 2013.
As intruiging as this seems getting a coach like ten Hag will be very difficult for Dortmund. There will be several European top teams looking for a new coach this summer and the Dutch coach will be a sought after candidate for most of them.