Marco Reus

Photo credit should read SASCHA SCHUERMANN/AFP/Getty Images

Dortmund under pressure as old problems resurface

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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.

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“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.

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Bundesliga wrap: BVB held, Gladbach goes ahead of Bayern (video)

AP Photo/Martin Meissner
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Bayern Munich lost on a day leaders Borussia Dortmund dropped points, the combustible Bundesliga season continuing its way on Saturday in Germany.

[ MORE: USMNT 2-0 Costa Rica | Player ratings ]

Bayer Leverkusen 3-1 Bayern Munich

Leon Goretzka’s goal before halftime, his fourth in three matches, was not the start of something good. Leon Bailey scored his first goal in five months to kickstart a three-goal second half that sent Bayern to its third away loss of the season. Kevin Volland and Lucas Alario scored the other Bayer goals.

The Bailey goal was magnificent.

Schalke 0-2 Borussia Monchengladbach

Alexander N√ľbel’s 59th minute red card put the hosts under the sword, but Christoph Kramer’s winner didn’t arrive until the 85th minute. Gladbach added another in stoppage time through Florian Neuhaus, and leaps over Bayern on goal differential for second on the table.

Eintracht Frankfurt 1-1 Borussia Dortmund

Marco Reus’ early goal was his 13th of the season, putting the leaders ahead in the 22nd minute, but fellow Golden Boot chaser Luka Jovic scored his 14th about a quarter-hour later to earn a point for still Top Four-chasing Eintracht.

Top Goal Scorers
Pos Name Total
1 L. Jovic 14
2 M. Reus 13
3 R. Lewandowski 12
3 P. Alc√°cer 12
5 S. Haller 11
5 T. Werner 11


Hannover 96 0-3 RB Leipzig — Friday
Hoffenheim 1-1 Fortuna Dusseldorf
Nurnberg 1-1 Werder Bremen
Hertha Berlin 0-1 Wolfsburg
Augsburg v. Mainz — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Stuttgart v. Freiburg —¬† Noon ET Sunday


Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Borussia Dortmund 20 15 4 1 51 20 31 9-1-0 6-3-1 49
 Mönchengladbach 20 13 3 4 41 18 23 9-0-0 4-3-4 42
 Bayern Munich 20 13 3 4 44 23 21 5-3-1 8-0-3 42
 RB Leipzig 20 11 4 5 38 18 20 7-2-1 4-2-4 37
 Eintracht Frankfurt 20 9 5 6 40 27 13 5-2-3 4-3-3 32
 VfL Wolfsburg 20 9 4 7 29 27 2 3-3-4 6-1-3 31
 Bayer Leverkusen 20 9 3 8 32 31 1 5-1-4 4-2-4 30
 1899 Hoffenheim 20 7 8 5 38 29 9 3-5-3 4-3-2 29
 Hertha BSC Berlin 20 7 7 6 31 31 0 4-4-2 3-3-4 28
 Werder Bremen 20 7 6 7 32 32 0 3-4-3 4-2-4 27
 FSV Mainz 05 19 7 6 6 22 25 -3 4-4-2 3-2-4 27
 FC Schalke 04 20 6 4 10 24 29 -5 4-0-6 2-4-4 22
¬†Fortuna D√ľsseldorf 20 6 4 10 22 39 -17 4-0-6 2-4-4 22
 SC Freiburg 19 5 6 8 24 32 -8 3-4-3 2-2-5 21
 FC Augsburg 19 3 6 10 26 33 -7 1-4-4 2-2-6 15
 VfB Stuttgart 19 4 2 13 15 42 -27 3-1-5 1-1-8 14
¬†1. FC N√ľrnberg 20 2 6 12 17 44 -27 2-4-5 0-2-7 12
 Hannover 96 20 2 5 13 18 44 -26 2-1-7 0-4-6 11

Dortmund tops Gladbach to move nine clear in Bundesliga

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Borussia Dortmund got back to winning ways with a 2-1 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach in the Borussen derby.

Marco Reus picked up the winner nine minutes after the halftime break on a beautiful counter-attack that the German finished off with a slide. Dortmund countered with just four attackers against seven defenders, and Mario Gotze unlocked the back line with a low curling cross that bent around the Gladbach defenders and right to the feet of a streaking Reus.

That earned the three points after Jadon Sancho and Cristoph Kramer had cancelled each other out just before halftime. The English kid scored the opener on 42 minutes thanks to a wonderful free-kick routine that featured some trickeration around the ball, leading to a Gotze delivery that found three Dortmund players free on net, with Sancho heading in past Yann Sommer.

Kramer equalized just three minutes later on a controversial tap-in that featured Thorgan Hazard barreling over two Dortmund defenders in an attempt to get his head to a cross from the right flank.

The win saw the hosts bounce back from the season’s first loss, a 2-1 defeat to 15th-placed Fortuna Dusseldorf on the road on Tuesday. American Christian Pulisic did not feature in the match on Friday after a full 90 minutes in the loss three days prior. The emergence of Sancho has seen Pulisic’s time on the field drop considerably, with just that one start since the end of September.

Dortmund 3-2 Bayern: Der Klassiker delivers exciting comeback

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Der Klassiker was billed as a chance for Borussia Dortmund to right all the wrongs suffered so far this young Bundesliga season. It looked as if they would make good on that opportunity, as Robert Lewandowski was on target and Borussia Dortmund was not.

Then, in a seven-minute span in the second half, all that went to waste. Dortmund found its shooting boots after a number of glorious chances went awry, as Marco Reus hit for a double and substitute Paco Alcacer found the winning touch in the 73rd minute for a 3-2 comeback win. The hosts found themselves a goal down twice, and both times erased the deficit before eventually going in front for good.

Surprisingly, both Christian Pulisic and Alcacer were left on the bench by Borussia Dortmund manager Lucien Favre, with in-form Jadon Sancho preferred to the American down the right-hand side and Mario Gotze chosen up top over the Spanish striker. That left Dortmund to sit back and defend for large stretches of time, and they wouldn’t make it to the halftime break with the clean sheet intact.

Dortmund looked dangerous on the counter-attack, but Bayern had the best early chances, the most contentious of which came in the 11th minute as Robert Lewandowski went down in the penalty area and screamed for a foul. VAR clearly gave it a look by the referee’s reaction, but ultimately decided there was minimal contact and did not ask for a review.

The game was wide open past the 15 minute mark, with Marco Reus through on goal but his a weak effort was saved by Manuel Neuer, before Franck Ribery fired a volley wide after latching onto a good Josh Kimmich cross. Bayern would go in front on 26 minutes as Serge Gnabry delivered a pinpoint cross to the head of Lewandowski, and the Polish international dove to meet the ball with his head, burying it past Marwin Hitz on the doorstep.

With Bayern leading at halftime, Dortmund took control of the run of play in the second half and pegged the visitors back. Just minutes after the break, Manuel Neuer brought down Marco Reus in the box, and although he got to the ball to punch it away, a penalty was awarded as Neuer cleaned out Reus after the touch. Reus took the spot kick and finished to equalize at 1-1 with a great penalty as Neuer went the wrong way.

The visitors would go back in front minutes later on a messy goal as Dortmund failed to clear, and eventually Kimmich at the near post lifted the ball to Lewandowski at the far post for another headed goal.  The hosts missed all kinds of beautiful chances to go in front, but Reus was there to finally put the ball in the back of the net on 67 minutes, leveling again at 2-2. He latched onto the ball near the top-right corner of the box and whipped a twisting shot across the face of goal and into the far right corner.

Dortmund would go in front just minutes later, and it was the in-form Alcacer to deliver the finishing blow. Bayern turned it over near the halfway line, and Axel Witsel perfectly released Alcacer on the break, who carried the ball forward before clipping it over Hitz after he had committed to coming out.

As expected, Bayern would pour forward looking to equalize, but they could not find a lifeline. Lewandowski thought he’d found the back of the net for a comeback of his own and a hat-trick, but the assistant referee’s flag went up to rule out the goal, with replays showing the decision was correct.

It was a famous comeback win for Borussia Dortmund who moved four points clear at the top of the table on 27 points, with Borussia Monchengladbach behind them at 23. Bayern sits in third, now on 20 points after the loss. The winner for super-sub Alcacer was his eighth Bundesliga goal in just his sixth appearance, with just one start in that span.

Bundesliga wrap: BVB takes 4-point lead into Der Klassiker

Peter Steffen//dpa via AP
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Niko Kovac’s Bayern Munich dropped points at home on Saturday, while Lucien Favre’s Borussia Dortmund found the goal it needed to get a win ahead of next Saturday’s big¬†Der Klassiker at the¬†Westfalenstadion.

[ MORE: Arsenal draws Liverpool ]

Bayern hosts AEK Athens in the Champions League on Wednesday while Dortmund visits Atletico Madrid a day earlier.

Bayern Munich 1-1 Freiburg

Lucas Holer’s 89th minute goal stunned the Allianz Arena, which had seen Bayern out-attempt the visitors 25-9 and hold Freiburg without a shot on target. Serge Gnabry‘s 80th minute goal was all the Bavarians could manage at home.

Wolfsburg 0-1 Borussia Dortmund

A very even game saw just one moment separate the two, as Jadon Sancho‘s cross soared over American center back John Brooks and Thomas Delaney headed back across goal for Marco Reus to head home.

BVB now has a four-point hold on the table lead in its bid to win a first title since 2012 and end Bayern’s six-season run as Bundesliga champions.

[ MORE: Leicester honors Srivaddhanaprabha ]

Hertha Berlin 0-3 RB Leipzig

Timo Werner scored twice for the third time this season — he has zero goals in his other eight league matches — as RBL picked up three nice away points.

Matheus Cunha, 19, scored his first Bundesliga goal for RBL, who sits a point behind second place Bayern.

Stuttgart 0-3 Eintracht Frankfurt — Friday
Bayer Leverkusen 1-4 Hoffenheim
Schalke 3-1 Hannover 96
Augsburg 2-2 Nurnberg
Borussia Monchengladbach vs. Fortuna Dusseldorf — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Mainz vs. Werder Bremen — Noon ET Sunday


Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Borussia Dortmund 10 7 3 0 30 10 20 4-1-0 3-2-0 24
 Bayern Munich 10 6 2 2 18 11 7 2-2-1 4-0-1 20
 RB Leipzig 10 5 4 1 19 9 10 3-2-0 2-2-1 19
 Eintracht Frankfurt 10 5 2 3 23 13 10 2-1-1 3-1-2 17
 Mönchengladbach 9 5 2 2 20 12 8 4-0-0 1-2-2 17
 Werder Bremen 9 5 2 2 17 14 3 2-2-1 3-0-1 17
 1899 Hoffenheim 10 5 1 4 22 14 8 2-1-2 3-0-2 16
 Hertha BSC Berlin 10 4 4 2 15 13 2 3-1-1 1-3-1 16
 FC Augsburg 10 3 4 3 18 16 2 1-3-1 2-1-2 13
 SC Freiburg 10 3 4 3 14 16 -2 2-2-1 1-2-2 13
 VfL Wolfsburg 10 3 3 4 14 15 -1 1-2-3 2-1-1 12
 Bayer Leverkusen 10 3 2 5 16 21 -5 1-1-3 2-1-2 11
 FC Schalke 04 10 3 1 6 8 12 -4 2-0-3 1-1-3 10
¬†1. FC N√ľrnberg 10 2 4 4 11 22 -11 2-2-1 0-2-3 10
 FSV Mainz 05 9 2 3 4 5 10 -5 2-2-1 0-1-3 9
 Hannover 96 10 1 3 6 12 21 -9 1-1-2 0-2-4 6
¬†Fortuna D√ľsseldorf 9 1 2 6 6 21 -15 1-0-4 0-2-2 5
 VfB Stuttgart 10 1 2 7 6 24 -18 1-1-3 0-1-4 5