Braces for Haller and Reus see BVB hit Köln for six
(Featured Image: Borussia Dortmund)
Borussia Dortmund have returned to the top of the Bundesliga after a 6-1 win over 1. FC Köln at Signal Iduna Park.
Goals from the in-form Raphael Guerreiro, Sébastien Haller, Marco Reus and Donyell Malen had Edin Terzic’s side 4-1 up at the half-time break, after Davie Selke had pulled one back for the visitors.
The second half saw Haller and Reus complete their braces, sealing a 6-1 victory to return to winning ways, extending Dortmund’s Bundesliga unbeaten streak to ten matches.
Reus made further history, with his goals taking him clear of Michael Zorc in second place of the club’s all-time record goalscorer charts.
33. Alexander Meyer
17. Marius Wolf
25. Niklas Süle
4. Nico Schlotterbeck
26. Julian Ryerson
21. Donyell Malen
8. Mahmoud Dahoud
22. Jude Bellingham
13. Raphael Guerreiro
11. Marco Reus (C)
9. Sébastien Haller
1. FC Köln
20. Marvin Schwäbe
2. Benno Schmitz
4. Timo Hübers
24. Julian Chabot
14. Jonas Hector (C)
7. Dejan Ljubicic
28. Ellyes Skhiri
47. Mathias Olesen
11. Florian Kainz
23. Sargis Adamyan
27. Davie Selke
The Black and Yellows came into this one, having made a near-perfect start to the calendar year, with the club winning 10 successive matches across all competitions.
However, a Champions League defeat at Chelsea nearly two weeks ago was followed up by a disappointing Revierderby draw at Schalke last weekend, where BVB threw away the three points late on.
Despite that, Edin Terzic named a similar starting 11 against Köln.
The backline remained almost the exact same, with the only change seeing Niklas Süle return to the team in place of Mats Hummels.
Emre Can made way in midfield for the departing Mahmoud Dahoud, while Raphael Guerreiro was chosen in midfield again, after his standout display in Gelsenkirchen.
The third and final change to that team came in the forward line, to which captain Marco Reus returned in a wider role, coming in for the injured Jamie Bynoe-Gittens.
With 23 points separating the sides, it was evident early on that ’die Schwarzgelbe’ would dominate.
Given such early dominance, it was only a matter of time until the hosts broke the deadlock.
That came after 15 minutes, when Donyell Malen exploited the space down the right flank with a lovely piece of skill before setting up Raphael Guerreiro in the box.
The Portuguese coolly poked the ball home to put his side in front.
Just two minutes later, the 81,365 in attendance would have another goal to celebrate.
Jude Bellingham was the instigator, driving forward before finding Marco Reus, starting a slick move as the ball was worked from Reus to Guerreiro and then to Sébastien Haller just inside the box, who lashed the ball home with his second touch.
Despite a brief penalty scare when Mahmoud Dahoud appeared to handle the ball in the box, ‘die Borussen’ remained on top.
With 32 minutes played, they added a third; Malen found Guerreiro in the box and the left-back would prove effective offensively once again, picking out Reus in space.
The club captain picked out the top corner effortlessly, for his 160th Borussia Dortmund goal, going one clear of Michael Zorc into second place.
160 – Marco Reus scored his 160th professional goal for Borussia Dortmund, overtaking Michael Zorc to become BVB's sole record goal scorer in professional football. Record. #BVBKOE pic.twitter.com/rIx4GCCjol
— OptaFranz (@OptaFranz) March 18, 2023
Just four minutes later, the eight-time German champions would make it four.
Niklas Süle fed the ball to Malen in space on the right flank. With a name that directly translates to ‘paint’ in German, the Dutchman made his mark on proceedings once more.
After driving into the 18-yard box, his powerful effort was too much for Marvin Schwäbe in the Köln goal.
But that wasn’t it for all the first half action; three minutes from half-time, Benno Schmitz found Davie Selke in the box from the right wing for the visitors.
The striker’s first attempt was hit straight at Alexander Meyer in the BVB goal, but he was allowed a second bite at the cherry, and didn’t pass up on the opportunity on this occasion, smashing it home.
When Edin Terzic’s side have played this season, there always seems to be goals and given how the first half panned out, we were due some more in the second.
However, we were made to wait until the 69th minute for any more.
That fifth goal for the hosts came courtesy of Haller, who sealed his first brace for the club, tapping home the rebound of a fantastic Dahoud free-kick that struck the crossbar.
But as the old ‘London bus’ saying goes, the next goal would come in just the following minute.
A long ball from Marius Wolf was excellently held up by Haller, who nodded the ball on to Malen, who then worked the ball into Reus.
The Dortmund legend seized another chance from inside the box, striking the ball well beyond Schwäbe for his 150th Bundesliga goal, completing the rout.
Seven goals was where the action stopped, as the visitors failed to find any further consolation goals, while with the win wrapped up, the Black and Yellows saw it out with minimal trouble.
What we learned
Borussia Dortmund are back at the summit of the Bundesliga, but only for now, as Bayern Munich face Bayer Leverkusen away from home in their game in hand tomorrow.
Primarily, the main thing we learned from this BVB performance is that this squad has an abundance of quality and that is why they find themselves in the position they are in.
It’s easy for people to overreact when things aren’t going to plan, such as the club’s past two games, but not only did this team show the mentality to respond, but they did it in style.
Having Guerreiro in midfield could be a masterstroke from Terzic; it has been the general consensus for some time now that his abilities going forward trump those he has defensively.
That enables Julian Ryerson to be the reliable option at left-back, while there’s an extra weapon in the club’s offensive armoury.
Marco Reus did a great job on the wing and with the likes of Giovanni Reyna and Jamie Bynoe-Gittens coming in and out of the team, this could be a regular set-up.
On the other wing, Donyell Malen has really stepped up; he’s been playing well whenever he has started recently and today he earned a goal and two assists to show for it.
Finally, those two goals for Sébastien Haller could be exactly what the Ivorian needs to return to his prolific best.
The Yellow Wall will be hoping that their team can build on such a great performance after the international break, when the games get all the bigger.
— Borussia Dortmund (@BlackYellow) March 18, 2023
Borussia Dortmund International Call-Ups
Thomas Meunier – Belgium
Jude Bellingham – England
Soumaila Coulibaly – France (Under-20s)
Nico Schlotterbeck – Germany
Marius Wolf – Germany
Emre Can – Germany
Tom Rothe – Germany (Under-19s)
Sébastien Haller – Ivory Coast
Donyell Malen – Netherlands
Julian Ryerson – Norway
Raphael Guerreiro – Portugal
Salih Özcan – Turkey
Giovanni Reyna – United States
Gregor Kobel – Switzerland (withdrawn due to injury)
Niklas Süle – Germany (left out)
Karim Adeyemi – Germany (injured)
Yousouffa Moukoko – Germany (injured)