Augsburg - Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrated a debut to remember with a hat-trick to fire Borussia Dortmund to a 4-0 win at FC Augsburg.
The first Gabon player to appear in the Bundesliga became wasted no time in making his mark in Germany’s top flight when his first shot on goal rippled the net. He added a second to settle Dortmund’s nerves as Augsburg threatened an equaliser, before completing his hat-trick late on. Robert Lewandowski scored from the penalty spot to give the Westphalians a dream start to the season.
With Mitchell Langerak, who has been on the winning side in all ten of his previous Dortmund appearances, replacing the suspended Roman Weidenfeller in goal, the signs were promising that the Yellow-Blacks would begin their campaign brightly. Things looked even more promising after just 30 seconds when Aubameyang was sent through on goal, but his pass back towards Lewandowski was intercepted.
Uninhibited, Augsburg responded immediately, with Halil Altintop going close in a high-octane opening. The hosts gave as good as they got, with Altintop blazing another effort over while Neven Subotic missed the target after Mohamed Amsif flapped at a corner, before a lull in the game allowed both teams, and the fans, to catch their breath.
Aubameyang, one of the quickest players in the Bundesliga, showed how fast his mind works too as he put Dortmund in front in the 24th minute. On the same wavelength as full-back Marcel Schmelzer, he stole in to meet the Germany international’s delicate lob into the penalty area with a low diving header past Amsif from six yards out.
Ilkay Gündogan tried an ambitious overhead kick before Marco Reus found his way past Amsif, but was forced a little too wide to grab Dortmund's second. The chance sparked a response from the home team, who saw Jan-Ingwer Callsen-Bracker’s header cleared off the line by Sven Bender and Raphael Holzhauser’s 40-yard pile-driver turned behind by an alert Langerak.
Aubameyang nearly slotted in a second shortly after the restart but Amsif guarded his near post well to push the ball behind as Dortmund sought more comfort than their one-goal lead provided. Nerves started creeping into their game in the form of misplaced passes and fouls within their own half, one of which led to Sascha Mölders beating Mats Hummels in the air to head over from six yards out.
Dortmund heeded the warning and Reus soon teed up Aubameyang to net his second, effectively finishing Augsburg off with a composed shot into the far corner. There was still time for the Gabon international to round Amsif and stroke the ball in for his third, crowning a remarkable debut before he was given a standing ovation as Jonas Hofmann replaced him.
The newcomer made a swift impact too, earning a penalty which Lewandowski converted to complete an emphatic victory for Dortmund.
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