And there it is, Borussia Dortmund’s season is as good as over. They’ve been eliminated from all knockout tournaments, and they’re far enough away from both 1st and 3rd that barring either a miracle or a complete collapse, they’re unlikely to do anything other than finish 2nd in the Bundesliga. Not only have they been knocked out of the Champions League, DFB-Pokal, and now the Europa League, but each elimination was progressively more and more embarrassing than the previous.
BVB well and truly whiffed on their last shot at making something of this season, going into the Europa League as favorites to win the whole thing, and being demolished 6-4, on aggregate, in their first tie in the competition, against Glasgow Rangers.
In reality, the below ratings aren’t entirely in line with the extremely negative perspective we’ve all got following the game. That’s because the real damage was done in the first leg of the tie, and while they weren’t especially good on Thursday, it was a failure to overcome the mess they’d made the week before. Here are the ratings from Thursday’s absolute mess:
I thought Can was pretty lucky not to have given up a goal from an incredibly stupid error.
It was indeed a very stupid error, but other than that I didn’t think Can was *too* bad.
Hummels lost possession far too easily and really whiffed on an attempted clearance, for Rangers to score their second, and realistically put the game out of sight for BVB.
That error was the knife to the heart of BVB’s comeback attempt. They had a chance before it, but they were never going to come back afterwards.
I thought Meunier was one of our better players before he came off injured.
He may have earned Jude Bellingham’s ire for misplacing a basic pass, and he should still never play for BVB again, but I actually don’t think he was too bad.
In the first half, everything was running through Bellingham in offense. He absolutely deserved his goal, and he even grabbed an assist after a lovely dink to Malen. That influence waned in the second half though. Not through lack of trying.
Sometimes it feels like Jude Bellingham, a teenager who has been at the club for less than two years, cares more about the club than a lot of the veterans who have been here much longer. His performance on Thursday typified his hard work and skill.
Hazard didn’t really do a whole lot.
The tackle for the penalty had me fuming. Hanging your leg out is incredibly amateurish, anywhere on the pitch, but especially in the penalty area.
I’m done with him.
Reus failed to follow-up on his incredible performance over the weekend. He was drifting for much of the game.
Once again, after his masterclass against Gladbach last weekend, Reus failed to show up in a big game. This isn’t the first time this season.
Malen was electric throughout the first half, but possibly should have scored a second just before halftime.
Along with Bellingham, Malen was BVB’s best player. He was aggressive, pressed like a madman, and was rewarded for his efforts with a goal.
Wolf was run ragged by Ryan Kent, down that right-hand side.
He came on and did his best in the time that he had.
Sean: Don’t care
In isolation, 2-2 at Ibrox wouldn’t be the worst result in the world, but given the aggregate score, and the way that the two goals were conceded, it’s incredibly frustrating. This tie was defined by a cacophony of individual mistakes by BVB players. There were stretches where Dortmund showed what they were capable of, but they kept getting undone by their own stupidity.
I know there’s a growing drum of calls for Marco Rose to be fired, but I don’t think any of this was on him. He can’t do anything about the lack of control his own players showed, and the squad is stretched so thin that he couldn’t really put out a different eleven. His players have to take responsibility for this loss.
The performance in a vacuum wasn’t too bad. Overall the club played Rangers and probably deserved a result better than 2-2. Unfortunately, all the hard work that the players did in the first half was undone by a pair of comical errors, for what feels like the hundredth time this season. Players like Wolf, Can, Hummels, Brandt, and Schulz are simply not good enough to get this team where it wants to be.