It was a cold night in the Vonovia Ruhrstadion as VFL Bochum hosted Borussia Dortmund in a Last-16 cup tie that had the feel of a derby. The game was physical from the start, and Bochum’s home crowd was nearly loud enough to drown out the match commentators. Bochum’s organized defense seemed impenetrable until the first half stoppage time when VFL keeper, Manuel Riemann was drawn out of goal and cleared the ball poorly, allowing Emre Can to break the deadlock with a strike from nearly midfield.
The second half began in much the same fashion as the first, but Bochum received a questionable penalty kick in the sixty-fourth minute, which they converted to equalize the score. Thankfully, our captain, Marco Reus was substituted in to seal the game with an assist from Jude Bellingham. It was a nervy conclusion, but a mature performance from Borussia Dortmund. Not only are the Black-and-Yellows on a five match win streak, manager Eden Terzic continues to be unbeaten in the Pokal.
Here are our picks for Man of the Match:
Can has looked to be at his best since joining Dortmund. This was another great showing, with several accurate long ball passes, a handful of masterful tackles and a goal that is some combination of world-class and dumb-lucky. I like this new, improved Emre Can.
If Hummels doesn't start every match, it’s so that he’s fully fit for games like this. This was a tie in which Dortmund needed to grind out the result, and Hummels locked down the box well. He won numerous aerial duals and his clearance tally for this match was in the double-digits. He may be 34, but he’s still got it!
Yup, good ol’ Greg is back on the list. Kobel made four saves and even more recoveries. He didn’t save the penalty, but he surely prevented extra time.
Jude put in another good day at the office, getting fouled constantly and contributing an assist. Typical Jude stuff.
Who was your Man of the Match?
This poll is closed
Honorable Mention: Julian Brandt
I felt Brandt deserved a shout here for being a work horse. He’s out there every game until his face turns red, but he’s also transformed into a very consistent player this season. You could say I’m on the #BrandtWagon!
Tell us your thoughts in the comments!