Borussia Dortmund

Getty Images

LIVE, UCL: Genk v. Liverpool, Inter Milan v. Dortmund headline

Leave a comment

The reigning UEFA Champions League champions can take a big step towards the UCL last 16 on Wednesday.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Premier League leaders Liverpool head to Genk as Jurgen Klopp‘s men aim to end their run of four-straight defeats away from home in the UCL group stage. Following their defeat to Napoli in their Group E opener and a narrow home win against RB Salzburg in Week 2, Klopp knows a big win is needed to get them back on track ahead of some tough games to close out to group stage.

Elsewhere, in Group F Borussia Dortmund head to Inter Milan in a monster clash at the San Siro, while Barcelona travel to Slavia Prague. Napoli head to RB Salzburg as Jesse Marsch’s upstarts have the chance to cause a huge shock in Group E, while Benfica host Lyon in Group G and Lille host Valencia in Group H.

Below is the full schedule for Wednesday’s late games, with all games kicking off at 3 p.m. ET.

Click on the link above to follow all of the action live, while we will have you covered with a roundup of the action right here on Pro Soccer Talk.


Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League schedule

Group E
Genk v. Liverpool
Red Bull Salzburg v. Napoli

Group F
Slavia Prague v. Barcelona
Inter Milan v. Borussia Dortmund

Group G
Benfica v. Lyon

Group H
Lille v. Valencia

Aubameyang calls Dortmund CEO ‘a clown’ for ‘bank balance’ comments

Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang called Hans-Joachim Watzke “a clown” over comments in which the Borussia Dortmund CEO appeared to insinuate that Aubameyang’s transfer to Arsenal was driven by money.

[ EUROPA LEAGUE: Man United held to 0-0, Wolves win | Arsenal run rampant ]

It’s a somewhat defensible assertion, at least on the surface, considering that Arsenal haven’t competed in the UEFA Champions League since the 2016-17 season. Aubameyang joined in January 2018, fully aware he wouldn’t be in the world’s preeminent club competition. In that sense, it was at best a lateral move; at worst, a minor step down.

“Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who is playing brilliantly for Arsenal, probably gets a warm heart when he looks at his bank balance. But Wednesdays he is sad as he only looks at the Champions League on TV”

Where Watzke gets it painfully wrong is on the domestic side of things. Outside of seven-time defending champions Bayern Munich, who exists in the Bundesliga to truly challenge Dortmund and their players? On a weekly basis, Aubameyang faces much tougher competition over the Premier League’s 38-game season.

[ MORE: Top Premier League storylines: Week 8 ]

Aubameyang’s response was colorful and full of “bringing up old stuff” that Watzke probably prefers to leave in the past.

Dortmund currently sit atop Group F in the Champions League, requiring two of Barcelona, Inter Milan and Slavia Prague to leapfrog them before tumbling into the Europa League, where Aubameyang could exact a measure of “sit down and hush” on the man who used to sign his checks.

Dortmund admit Sancho will leave soon

Getty Images
1 Comment

Borussia Dortmund have admitted that teenage sensation Jadon Sancho won’t be around for too much longer.

The 19-year-old is now a regular for England and has been a key player for Dortmund since arriving in 2017.

Speaking to German magazine Kicker, sporting director Michael Zorc said that he doesn’t expected Sancho to remain at Dortmund for many years to come as Premier League giants continue to circle to sign the exciting winger.

“No decision has been made,” Zorc said. “But you don’t have to be a prophet to know he won’t play here for another five years. He has taken this positive development (at Dortmund). I doubt that would have been possible with top English clubs. We trust the players very early, and we are not afraid to let them play. He acknowledges that.”

“He’s an instinctive footballer, a street footballer, he’s always a footballer, but he’s always setting new limits,” Zorc said. “He does not sit back satisfied. He wants to play football successfully and beautifully. That alone is his motivation.”

Zorc had previously admitted that Sancho’s representatives had met with Man United, while Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke said they turned down an offer from a “super club” for Sancho this summer.

His creativity and pace out wide is one thing, but he delivers goals and assists on a regular basis and is a very smart player who keeps the ball well and makes intelligent runs.

Sancho displaced Christian Pulisic from the Dortmund starting lineup last season (that sound you can hear is USMNT fans grinding their teeth…) and has scored 18 goals and added 29 assists in 64 appearances for the German giants over the last two seasons.

The Londoner has been linked with a move to Manchester United on multiple occasions in the past and the former Watford and Man City youngster would probably cost close to $150 million in the current market. He’s that good.

Man United need someone of Sancho’s quality and they are willing, and desperate enough, to pay the big bucks to sign him.

Sancho was very smart here. He knew it would take him four or five years to break through at Man City and become a regular, no matter how good he is. He went to Dortmund and has become one of the first names on their teamsheet and is ripping it up in the Bundesliga and Champions League.

These comments suggest one thing: Dortmund will keep cherry-picking top young talent from across the world, and in particular England, and give them chances right away. Then they will make huge profits, just like they did with Pulisic, Ousmane Dembele and many others.

Bundesliga wrap: Bayern on top; Schalke dismantle RB Leipzig

Getty Images
1 Comment

With David Wagner‘s red-hot Schalke rolling past RB Leipzig, Bayern Munich are atop of the Bundesliga table.

Paderborn 2-3 Bayern Munich

For a second, it seemed Bayern Munich’s visit to Paderborn was going to end with a fairytale ending for the recently promoted home side. In the end, Bayern’s overwhelming talent showed through with goals from Serge Gnabry, Philippe Coutinho, and Robert Lewandowski, who sealed the game in the 79th minute with a delicate chip.

With Schalke’s dominating performance over RB Leipzig, Niko Kovač and company are back at the top of the Bundesliga with 14 points from six matches.

[ MORE: Bundesliga schedule  ]

RB Leipzig 1-3 Schalke 04

From early on, Wagner’s side took control of the game, specifically in the 29th minute when Salif Sane gave the traveling team the lead. Before halftime, Amine Harit converted from the spot. By the time Leipzig attempted to rally back with a goal from Swede Wmil Forsberg in the 83rd minute, Schalke was two goals up. Like Leipzig, Schalke remains one point back of the leaders.

USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie started and played all 90 minutes for Bundesliga’s third place team.

Borussia Dortmund 2-2 Werder Bremen

The years were rolled back on Saturday as Mario Götze and Marco Rues put Dortmund up 2-1 over Bremen in the first half.

But just a handful of minutes into the second, Marco Friedl and USMNT teen Josh Sargent let Westfalenstadion know what the future is all about. Off of a corner-kick set piece, Sargent assisted Friedl, who attentively found the ball near the back post and tapped the ball with his head as he was going down. Dortmund are two matches removed from their last league win.

Elsewhere

Union Berlin 1-2 Eintracht Frankfurt — Friday
Mainz 0-1 Wolfsburg — Saturday
Augsburg 0-3 Bayer Leverkusen — Saturday
Hoffenheim 0-3 Borussia Mönchengladbach — Saturday
Fortuna – SC Freiburg — Sunday
Köln – Hertha Berlin — Sunday

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Bayern Munich 6 4 2 0 19 6 13 2-1-0 2-1-0 14
 RB Leipzig 6 4 1 1 14 6 8 1-1-1 3-0-0 13
 FC Schalke 04 6 4 1 1 13 6 7 2-0-1 2-1-0 13
 Mönchengladbach 6 4 1 1 10 5 5 1-1-1 3-0-0 13
 Bayer Leverkusen 6 4 1 1 11 7 4 2-1-0 2-0-1 13
 VfL Wolfsburg 6 3 3 0 9 4 5 1-2-0 2-1-0 12
 Borussia Dortmund 6 3 2 1 17 9 8 2-1-0 1-1-1 11
 SC Freiburg 5 3 1 1 11 4 7 1-1-1 2-0-0 10
 Eintracht Frankfurt 6 3 1 2 9 8 1 2-1-0 1-0-2 10
 Werder Bremen 6 2 1 3 10 14 -4 1-0-2 1-1-1 7
 1899 Hoffenheim 6 1 2 3 4 10 -6 1-0-2 0-2-1 5
 FC Augsburg 6 1 2 3 7 14 -7 1-1-1 0-1-2 5
 Fortuna Düsseldorf 5 1 1 3 7 9 -2 0-1-1 1-0-2 4
 1. FC Union Berlin 6 1 1 4 6 12 -6 1-0-3 0-1-1 4
 Hertha BSC Berlin 5 1 1 3 5 11 -6 1-0-1 0-1-2 4
 1. FC Köln 5 1 0 4 4 11 -7 0-0-2 1-0-2 3
 FSV Mainz 05 6 1 0 5 5 16 -11 1-0-2 0-0-3 3
 SC Paderborn 6 0 1 5 8 17 -9 0-0-3 0-1-2

 

Dortmund under pressure as old problems resurface

Photo credit should read SASCHA SCHUERMANN/AFP/Getty Images
Leave a comment

BERLIN (AP) Borussia Dortmund is under pressure after dropping more points in its bid to end Bayern Munich’s Bundesliga dominance.

But don’t suggest the team has a mentality problem.

Dortmund captain Marco Reus reacted angrily to the suggestion after Sunday’s 2-2 draw at Eintracht Frankfurt.

[ MORE: Top PL story lines ]

“Are you serious? The 2-2 was a mentality problem?” Reus told a Sky reporter. “We played stupidly, sure, but don’t come to me with your mentality crap. Every week, the same rubbish.”

Dortmund coach Lucien Favre also rejected the notion.

“It has nothing to do with mentality,” the Swiss coach said.

But Dortmund’s league challenge is in danger of faltering due to the same frailties that undermined its hopes last season. The side has already dropped five points from five games and it can ill afford many more slip-ups if it is to claim its first Bundesliga title since 2012.

Dortmund failed to exploit numerous chances to build on leads against Frankfurt and twice allowed the home side to get back in the game. The defense looked shaky without the injured Mats Hummels, who had been forced off injured after 63 minutes.

“We had big opportunities to score more goals,” Favre said. “At times we played very, very well, but at times our last pass and our second-last pass wasn’t so good.”

It was a similar story against Barcelona in the Champions League the previous Tuesday, when Dortmund dominated the second half but failed to convert chances into goals and had to be content with a 0-0 draw.

[ MORE: Can Chelsea take advantage of soft schedule? ]

Favre said the situation reminded him of February, when Dortmund went five games without a win and got knocked out of the German Cup by Werder Bremen. Also, Tottenham won 3-0 against Dortmund, on its way to knocking Favre’s team out of the Champions League. Dortmund frequently dominated without converting chances into goals and was then prone to conceding late in games as nerves took hold.

“You have to keep going after scoring the first goal,” said Favre, whose side failed to register a shot at goal in the last 15 minutes of the first half against Frankfurt, and was hanging on again at the end of the second.

“You can’t dominate a game for 90 minutes. Altogether it was OK, but not good enough,” Favre said.

The draw left second-place Bayern a point ahead of Dortmund after five games. Leader Leipzig is three points ahead of Dortmund.

Dortmund hosts Bremen on Saturday, while Bayern visits bottom side Paderborn and Leipzig hosts Schalke.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Ciaran Fahey on Twitter: https://twitter.com/cfaheyAP