Against a Hoffenheim side that lacked its most lethal goalscorer, Andrej Kramarić, Dortmund still managed to look unstable at the back, allowing strikers Munus Dabbur and Ihlas Bebou to carve through the defense like a knife through hot butter. Marwin Hitz, Manuel Akanji, Raphaël Guerreiro, and Mats Hummels all looked tentative against the Hoffenheim attack, with each player having notable mistakes leading directly to chances for the opposition. Luckily for the defense, Dortmund’s attack was slightly more lively, although not without moments of controversy. Erling Haaland’s equalizing goal came while Dabbur was writhing in pain on the ground, which led to a shoving match between Haaland and Hoffenheim defender Stefen Posch. Despite all of the bad blood created between the two teams after Haaland’s equaliser, the chances were few and far between for the rest of the contest, and the match ultimately finished 2-2.
This is a really tough one to call, but here are the four players I’d nominate for Man of the Match:
Despite the shaky defensive display by his teammates in the backline, Emre Can managed to put in another typically reliable performance. Despite playing an atypical role at right back, Can had several key tackles and was able to be a consistent option in attack. He was one of the few players in black and yellow that seemed to take a proactive approach to the match, and for that, he deserves some recognition.
Even when he isn’t at his best, Haaland is always the most threatening player on the pitch for BVB. He had a few chances in the first half that he should’ve done better with, but he was able to level the score in the second half and never seemed to give up on the game. It’s also worth noting that I feel his decision not to put the ball out of play was totally justified given the deficit Dortmund were facing and the late-tackling antics shown by Hoffenheim throughout the match.
Though Jadon Sancho was far from perfect in his decision making in the second half, he formed an electric partnership with Raphael Guerreiro at the start of the match. He was instrumental in the creation of several chances throughout the game, and his clinical finish for die schwarzgelben’s first goal was fantastic.
Guerreiro’s defense left much to be desired today, but his passing was masterful at times. His assist to Sancho was well-weighted, and he should’ve had another, but Haaland was unable to finish. The good slightly outweighed the bad for Guerreiro against Hoffenheim, which is more than can be said for several of his teammates.
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