Against a lowly second division side like Ingolstadt FC, Borussia Dortmund would have been expected to advance easily, so a 2-0 victory including a scoreless first half may not feel like a major victory. That being said, BVB got the job done, unlike certain clubs, with a squad far from the club’s most lethal.
Erling Haaland, Gio Reyna, and Mahmoud Dahoud, and other were missing, while Marco Reus and Thorgan Hazard started on the bench. Nevertheless, BVB’s weakened side cruised past FC Ingolstadt in the second half, courtesy of a brace from Hazard. Here are our match ratings:
Hitz had so little to do that I honestly forgot he was even in net.
Pongo’s defensive responsibilities were sparse, but whenever he was tested, he passed with flying colors. He won all his duels, both on the ground and in the air.
More Pongo game time with no goals conceded... just sayin’.
Hummels, like Pongracic, was great.
If not for a clumsy foul from Emre Can, Hummels would have opened the scoring much earlier for the hosts.
Marco Rose tried out a new system yesterday, with Can playing as the right center back in a back three. In this role Can, like his partners, didn’t have much to do. At the very least, he was better than he did at left back last week against Ajax.
Because of Ingolstadt’s sparce attacking threats, Can was able to get forward and provide his team more support to recycle the ball. He nearly sprinted in on goal late in the game with an exceptional show of pace and awareness.
Jude was unfortunate not to score, striking the post with a curled effort from outside the box. He was an absolute monster in midfield, winning 8(!) of his 13(!!!) ground duels and generally terrorizing Ingolstadt every chance he got.
As Sean pointed out, Bellingham’s performance was really one goal away from a 9 or a 10. He was everywhere, showing the flicks and tricks of a player brimming with confidence.
Witsel had a pretty quiet night.
Should I just give him an N/A?
Keep the 5 Sean, I think he did a pass. Maybe two.
Meunier should have had an assist, when he cleverly laid a header across the mouth of the goal towards Steffen Tigges. Tigges, unfortunately, chose to stoop for a header instead of striking the ball with his foot.
+1 for the sheer determination to keep being fit despite definitely carrying an injury.
Wolf started out on the wing, and I actually thought he looked pretty good. He had a few good chances himself. While he wasn’t technically on the squad sheet, he did have the “hockey assists” on both BVB goals.
It was great to see Wolf play a majority of minutes, as his chemistry with the team is starting to grow. It was an interesting squad to work with, but with some time, I think Wolf will be ready to slot in just about wherever he is needed.
This was Brandt’s best complete game in a while. He bagged two beautiful assists, and looked dangerous throughout otherwise.
This club definitely misses Erling Haaland. Tigges’s biggest accomplishment was when he headed a sitter onto the post when he should have just tapped it with his boot.
Hazard came onto the pitch and made an immediate impact, scoring the only two goals of the match. This is exactly what you want from your substitutes, and exactly what you want from a veteran player.
Honestly one of the most enjoyable players in this squad to see score a goal. Toto just oozes talent and passion when hes on his game.
Reus didn’t have nearly as big an impact on the game as Hazard, but thankfully he didn’t really need to.
Ingolstadt were never going to pose much of a threat. They hardly even tried to break out of their own half. I would have liked to see BVB control the game earlier in the match, but they eventually got the job done, which is exactly what good teams do. Even though the score was relatively close, I was never concerned about the final result. In that sense I would categorize this game as acceptable, but unremarkable.
I agree with Sean’s choice of words , “acceptable, but unremarkable”. It is a good end to a game Dortmund should win. Dortmund have a penchant to leave these types of games on a knife’s edge, conceding late goals or waiting so long to break down the opposition that it turns into a panic by the 80th minute. I do not think it was so much a Marco Rose masterclass as a opposition side on poor form that allowed Dortmund to see this one out with much fuss. From what I have seen this season from the squad and the coach, I am not ready to dole out 8’s for a routine Pokal win, and clearly neither is my colleague. Nonetheless, a step forward in this competition is more than can be said for the team over in Bavaria.