The November 2017 Revierderby match will long be remembered by supporters of both Schalke and Dortmund as the visitors stormed back from a 4-0 half-time deficit to grab a point with a 4-4 draw. As with any such match, there were numerous controversies and talking points, but at the end of the day, Peter Bosz and The Black and Yellow were left with more questions than answers.
In response to poor play, Bosz unveiled a new formation and starting XI. He set up the club in a 3-4-3 formation with Christian Pulisic as a wide midfielder behind Andriy Yarmolenko. Sokratis returned but Roman Burki missed the match due to injury, meaning the ageless Roman Weidenfeller earned the start.
The match could not have begun any better for the home side. In the 12th minute, Pulisic sent in a cross that Nuri Sahin mishit. However, a streaking Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang slid toward the far post and knocked the ball into the net for a 1-0 lead. Replays show the ball may have deflected off his upraised hand but a review showed nothing wrong with the goal. The second goal in the 18th minute would come from a Schalke mistake. Dortmund won a free kick and Sahin’s ball in was deflected by Benjamin’s Stambouli’s outstretched leg cleanly into the net to give BVB the 2-0 lead.
With Signal Iduna Park raucous and the Schalke midfield playing poorly, the home side would build what seemed to be an insurmountable lead. Two minutes after the own goal Aubameyang streaked down the right on the break. His perfectly hit cross across the front of the net found an unmarked Mario Gotze who headed the ball into the goal as if it were a training exercise. No more than five minutes after that, it as Raphael Guerreiro who found the net when he side kicked a deflected ball past a diving Ralf Fahrmann for a 4-0 lead.
The first-half was a disaster for a Schalke side that had tried to play physical and we simply overrun. By the second-half kick-off, Domenico Tedesco had made all three substitutions, bringing on Amine Harit, Leon Goretzka, and Matija Natasic. The Schalke managed admitted in the post-game presser that he did not expect his side to gain anything at this point from the match, noting the home side’s dominance and the loud atmosphere. Bosz, meanwhile, made no changes at halftime which would play into the match.
Schalke’s early attempt to try and seize back some momentum was overruled by VAR when Naldo’s header was ruled offside upon review. Undeterred, Stambouli redeemed himself in the 61st minute finding Guido Burgstallar with a long ball that the striker headed over Weidenfeller. Four minutes later Yevhen Konoplyanka put in a good cross from the left that found Harit in front of goal. The Schalke man had time to collect and set before scoring the visitor’s second goal of the match.
The pressure increased immensely on the home side in the 72nd minute when Aubameyang recklessly fouled Harit for the Gabon international’s second yellow. Shortly after Mario Gotze came off due to injury. Bosz three substitutions were all defensive in nature – bringing on Bartra (Yarmolenko), Castro (Gotze), and Dan-Axel Zagadou (Guerreiro) – yet Dortmund still were unable to close out the match. In the 86th minute, Daniel Caligiuri dribbled by Zagadou on the right and lasered a shot into the short corner to make the score 4-3.
Due to multiple injuries and the high number of goals, the referee added seven minutes of stoppage time at the end of the second half. That extra time was important as four minutes into it Konoplyanka sent in a marvellous corner that Naldo beat Zagadou to and headed home the tying goal.
Dortmund now have one point in their last five Bundesliga matches and sit fifth in the table, eight points behind Bayern Munich who lost on the weekend. Schalke fall to third, two points behind second-place Leipzig and level on points with Gladbach.