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Match Ratings: Borussia Dortmund Unlucky to Lose in Champions League Quarterfinal Against Manchester City

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The referees, BVB’s defenders, and Phil Foden conspire to rob Jude Bellingham of all the plaudits

Manchester City v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

I think it’s fair to say that most fans went into yesterday’s Champions League tie against Manchester City expecting the worst. Borussia Dortmund haven’t exactly been on the best run of form lately, and they were up against arguably the best side in the world right now. But of course, BVB can be relied upon to put in a good performance when you least expect it. They went toe-to-toe with Man City all game long, and were incredibly unfortunate not to come away with more from the game.

If it wasn’t for some very suspect refereeing, it could have finished 2-2, or if not for some careless defensive errors, it could have been a different story entirely. But the good news is that Borussia Dortmund are still in this tie going into the second leg. Man City will come to the Westfalenstadion looking to hold on to their slender advantage, and BVB have a real shot at an upset.

Here are our ratings from yesterday’s match:

Starting XI

Marwin Hitz

Paul: 7

Zac: 7

Made some good saves on some of City’s more tame efforts, and his distribution and calmness in possession were excellent against a team who are very capable of pressing. I thought he could have gotten a bit closer to Foden and De Bruyne’s efforts, but that might be harsh.

Manuel Akanji

Paul: 8

Zac: 6.5

Was caught ball watching on a few occasions, but put in a much more solid shift than he did against Frankfurt. Akanji could be a great center back if he was at least a good center back every time he plays. More at fault than Thomas Meunier for the second goal.

Mats Hummels

Paul: 7

Zac: 7

Mateu Morey

Paul: 4

Phil Foden gave him fits all night long. I’m not sure I’d put it all on Morey though. Foden is very, very good.

Zac: 4.5

I feel that Morey did better against the pace and quick feet of the Manchester players than Meunier would have in his place. However, ratings should not necessarily be comparative, and to Paul’s point, Foden is a challenging opponent for any fullback.

Rapha Guerreiro

Paul: 6

Zac: 6

Emre Can

Paul: 2

Can was really, really poor last night. He made the mistake that led to Man City’s first, but he failed to tighten things up after that, and looked completely out of his depth all night long.

Zac: 2

Unequivocally Can’s worst performance in the black and yellow. He turned over the ball no less than 7 times and his 83% pass accuracy from the heart of the midfield was painful to watch. Hopefully he can get his head straight before the weekend.

Jude Bellingham

Manchester City v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Paul: 9

He absolutely deserved a goal. Not just because he didn’t foul Ederson to get the ball, but because he played brilliantly.

Zac: 8.5

I am hard-pressed to give any player a 9 in a game we did not win, but it is also only half a game because of the Champions League format. Jude was energetic, progressive, and determined. Really deserved his goal, but alas.

Mo Dahoud

Paul: 7

Zac: 6.5

He was not as careless in midfield as Can, even though you would expect it to be the other way around. Dahoud worked hard, and in my opinion, did not deserve to be substituted in the second half. His last few games may not have been the lights-out performances we saw in March, but he seems to be settling into some sense of consistency.

Ansgar Knauff

Paul: 4

Thought Knauff looked a little bit out of his depth. He was overwhelmed in such a big game, and his lack of experience showed. I wouldn’t put any of that on him though. Before last night, he had only played 44 minutes of football for BVB.

Zac: 5

Going off of the Frankfurt game, I think Knauff gave us as much, if not more than we would have gotten from Hazard, Reyna, or Brandt. Those three are woefully out of form, so hopefully a run of games can get Knauff running a bit more even with the team.

Marco Reus

Manchester City v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final: Leg One Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Paul: 8

Zac: 8.5

Captain Marco breaking records on a Champions League night? I felt the years rolling back. Great goal, and a great effort all game from the captain.

Erling Haaland

Paul: 5

Zac: 5

Frankfurt showed Man City the effect of marking Haaland out of a game, and City tried to follow suit. The big man saw very little of the ball, but another shaky Ruben Dias performance could be all he needs at home to break through. Nonetheless, Haaland was still able to feed in his teammate for a goal, something he may have to settle for more often if he continues to be double-marked.

Substitutes

Gio Reyna

Paul: 5

Zac: 3

So... what’s the deal with this guy? I’m American, I want Gio to succeed at Dortmund, but at this point the season is looking like a wash for him. Hopefully Rose can reinvigorate him.

Thomas Delaney

N/A

Thomas Meunier

Paul: 4

Not sure if it was Meunier’s fault for missing the header, or if he was done dirty by his teammates, leaving him with two men all alone. Probably a bit of both.

Zac: 4

Agree with Paul. As much as I want to blame Meunier for everything, he’s 6’3 and rose as high as he could for that ball; not like 5’8 Morey is going to do any better without any help from his team.

Overall

Paul: 7

This was not the drubbing that many of us were gearing up for, and I think that had more to do with Borussia Dortmund playing well than Man City playing poorly. If the referee hadn’t inserted himself, then the two teams would have been very evenly matched, according to xG, and the 2-2 would have been about right.

I think BVB deserve a ton of credit for doing so well against probably the best team in the world right now.

Zac: 7

While I wanted Dortmund to come out ravenous in the second half, outraged at Jude Bellingham’s stolen goal, they stuck to the plan and maintained their composure. It was a balanced and convincing performance from a team who looked uninspired and confused against Eintracht Frankurt only a few days earlier. Dortmund need to use this performance to realize that they can get through even the best opponents, and slamming the ball to Haaland is not the only way to do it. No one gave them a chance in this tie but Die Schwarzgelben showed that they have a fight to give; hopefully they bring it again next week.