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Match Ratings: RB Leipzig 1-3 Borussia Dortmund

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Dortmund pulled off one of their biggest wins of the season on Saturday

RB Leipzig v Borussia Dortmund - Bundesliga Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images

Borussia Dortmund pulled off maybe their best win of the season on Saturday, beating title-challengers, RB Leipzig, 3-1 at the Red Bull Arena. Following a dull first half, which saw BVB fail to register a single shot, and RB Leipzig managing only three, Dortmund exploded in the second half to a 3-1 win with Jadon Sancho and Marco Reus seemingly finding their form at the right moment.

Here is how we rated the individual performances from the match:

Starters

Roman Burki

Nick: 6

Didn’t have much to do, although he was nearly beaten by Dani Olmo in the 67th minute. He made a nice initial save on Sorloth’s header, but there was nothing he could do on the second one.

Paul: 6

Mike: 6

Mats Hummels

RB Leipzig - Borussia Dortmund Photo by Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images

Nick: 8

Was maybe one of the few to have a consistently good performance. He held Poulson completely in check all game, and had a few good passes and runs with the ball.

Paul: 8

Mike: 8

Manuel Akanji

Nick: 7

Paul: 8

Mike: 7

Looked solid for the most part and cleaned up behind the midfield well.

Thomas Meunier

Nick: 7

I thought he could have closed down Angelino better on the cross that led to Sorloth’s goal, but it was in garbage time, and he was solid for the rest of the game.

Paul: 7

Mike: 7

Once again the focus of the opposition press but did well to keep Angelino quiet for 89 minutes.

Rapha Guerreiro

Nick: 6.5

I thought he was fine but nowhere near the Rapha we’re used to seeing. He got absolutely punked by Dani Olmo on the shot off the post. But like everyone else, he improved in the second half.

Paul: 7

Mike: 7

Had some nice displays going forward and his linkup with Reus helped create the third goal, Rapha also allowed Olmo past him too easily a couple of times, but the post spared him.

Thomas Delaney

Nick: 6

Paul: 7

Mike: 5

Harsh? His passing was so poor unless it was extremely short and loses a point for his reckless booking for hugging Forsberg to the ground, constantly flirted with a second yellow until Terzic took him off with 20 minutes to go.

Axel Witsel

RB Leipzig - Borussia Dortmund Photo by Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images

Nick: 6

Paul: 5

Sadly we’ve probably seen the last of Axel Witsel as a world-class midfielder. An Achilles injury is tough on any athlete, but at the tail-end of his career, it’s unlikely he’ll ever be the player he was the last couple seasons for BVB.

Mike: 5

Marco Reus

Nick: 7

It might not have looked like he did much, but Marco was doing a lot of the little things that don’t show up on scoresheets. His flick-on for Sancho’s goal was genius, his weighted pass to Haaland for the third goal was sublime, and he was an asset in defense throughout the game.

Paul: 8

Mike: 8

Struggled to link up with the midfield in the first half as he was too far forward. Two assists after the break changed all that and his pressing was instrumental in the victory.

Jadon Sancho

Nick: 9

My MOTM. With his second goal in as many games and a beautiful assist to Haaland, along with a number of good dribbles and 1v1s, it looks like Sancho is #back.

Paul: 9

Mike: 9

Consecutive league games with a goal and of course that delightful cross for Haaland’s goal was class. Jadon is returning to form at just the right time.

Gio Reyna

Nick: 6.5

Paul: 6

Mike: 6

Erling Haaland

RB Leipzig - Borussia Dortmund Photo by Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images

Nick: 9

Haaland returned with a vengeance, to the tune of two goals against one of the top defenses in the Bundesliga.

Paul: 9

Mike: 9

Haaland is my MOTM in a close race. Not only did he score a brace, but his holdup play was crucial, especially for Sancho’s opener. How about that dribbling run he made before his own header? No one knew he had that in his locker.

Substitutes

Emre Can

Nick: 9

Can came on following the Witsel’s unfortunate injury, and was like a shot of energy to the squad. His aggressive runs forward and defensive ferocity disrupted the Leipzig attack down the midfield. And he didn’t get a yellow!

Paul: 8

Mike: 8

Emre Can for Witsel was a blessing in disguise. We needed more bite and tenacity in the midfield and the German brought that when he came on. Can had some really good runs forward with the ball which gave Leipzig something different to think about.

Dan-Axel Zagadou

Nick: 6

Paul: 6

Mike: 5

Allowed Sorloth to get separation and cost his team the clean sheet.

Steffen Tigges

N/A

Julian Brandt

N/A

General

Nick: 7.5

I don’t know what Terzic said or what kind of adjustments were made by the coaching staff, but Dortmund came out after the break looking like a completely different team. I thought the press was very effective and limited what Leipzig could do to get the ball to their playmakers. The pressing led to more chances with meaningful possession, and it led to Jadon Sancho and Marco Reus having some of their best performances of the season, and Erling Haaland having another Haaland-esque performance.

Paul: 8

Not to lean on football cliches (as I proceed to do exactly that), but this was a game of two halves. The first half was one of the most boring halves of football I’ve watched in recent memory, but the second half was a completely different story. Borussia came out with intent, and cut through an otherwise stout Leipzig defense with surprising ease. Sancho’s goal and Haaland’s first were both brilliant team efforts, and seeing Haaland, Sancho, and Reus linking up so effectively gives me hope for the rest of the season. I’m not quite ready to buy into this turnaround, but I’m feeling vaguely optimistic.

Mike: 7

The opening 45 minutes was a cagey midfield battle, with neither team wanting to give up a goal. In the second half, Dortmund’s pressing was key to the victory and caught Leipzig by surprise. This was a big away victory against a side ahead of us in the table. Reus played well, Sancho played well, and Haaland is back. Terzic got it right on the day against a highly rated Julian Nagelsmann. This victory, coupled with Bayern losing, should give BVB the momentum to get back into the title race.