The team took some time to get going, and a wondersave from Greg prevented a potential disaster, but in the end, Borussia Dortmund managed to overpower Darmstadt and collect three points. A 3-0 scoreline might be a bit flattering but, I thought Dortmund controlled this match reasonably well. The match saw the Debut of Ian Maatsen and the return of Jadon Sancho, and both players had some impressive displays respectively. With Leipzig dropping points from the get-go, these three points suddenly feel all the more important. Let’s hope that this is the start of a good run for top four!
Here are some of my post match observations from today’s win against Darmstadt:
Persistent Struggles in Open Play
Both on and off the ball, I think there are still a lot of questions to be asked. The first 20 minutes basically had Darmstadt written all over them, and I don’t think it’s outrageous to claim, that Julian Brandt’s lovely strike in the 24th minute was somewhat against the run of play. Terzic’s team still struggled to play out of the back, but there was some movements from especially Sabitzer and Maatsen that helped the cause quite a bit. I don’t expect one training camp in Marbella to fix everything, but let’s hope that Sahin and Bender can make the team tick, because in open play, Dortmund still struggled, especially in the first half.
Ian Maatsen impresses in his debut
Man, does it feel good to finally have a tenacious left-back with the willingness to run up and down the field like there’s no tomorrow. I think Maatsen will solve a lot of the problems BVB have faced in the first half of the season. He was good at playing out of the back, making active run into the channels and even inverted to help build-up on quite a few occasions.
Dortmund simply need players that are good both on and off the ball, and Maatsen showed that he’s capable at managing both sides of the game today. If he continues like this, Bensebaini will have some fierce competition for the starting spot.
SANCHO IS BACK!
I want to dedicate this section to Sancho. The boy has been through so much over the last couple of years, and it’s just pure joy to watch him play and smile again. Not only did Sancho manage to play a good chunck of the game, he also managed to showcase exactly what kind of player he is. He found multiple dangerous positions throughout his 35 minutes on the pitch, and he of course managed to assist his old friend, Marco Reus, who was one big smile when he netted the low cross from Sancho. I mentioned how I felt like the loan-deal wasn’t necessarily a good idea in the article posted yesterday, but boy do I just want all the success on the world for Sancho.
- What an insane save by Greg. Just when you think he can’t impress more than he already does, he pulls this one out.
- The subs made the difference today, no doubt. It obviously also had something to do with Darmstadt chasing the game as well, but with the two new quality pieces in the squad, the bench can hopefully be even more of a game changer going forward.
- Happy for Mouki, who netted one of his best goals in his senior career. Created it himself together with Sabitzer and was clinical with the finish. Lovely stuff.
What do you think of tonight’s result, and what did you make of the performance? Let me know in the comments below!