Marco Reus and Gregor Kobel star as Borussia Dortmund beat Bayer Leverkusen
Marco Reus grabbed a goal and Gregor Kobel kept Bayer Leverkusen out as Borussia Dortmund made a winning start to the season at Signal Iduna Park.
Dortmund 1-0 Leverkusen
Goal: 1-0 Reus (10')
Red card: Hradecky (90'+2)
Dortmund were straight on the front foot, and ahead after just 10 minutes. Karim Adeyemi's angled effort was somehow prevented from crossing the line by Lukas Hradecky and Piero Hincapie, but as they tried to keep it the right side of the goal-line from their perspective, Reus popped up to prod it in. Patrik Schick curled Leverkusen's first shot of the game over as the clock ticked towards 20 minutes before Reus dragged an effort wide from a promising position. Jude Bellingham also flashed a low shot just wide of the same right-hand post, which had been one of the protagonists of a first half which Dortmund edged in all aspects.
Hradecky's quick reflexes prevented Thorgan Hazard from doubling Dortmund's lead early in the second half. The offside flag then came to Dortmund's rescue to rule out Exequiel Palacio's header after he turned in a rebound from Schick's shot, as Leverkusen threatened to level. Gregor Kobel came into his own to deny Schick as he and Leverkusen edged closer and closer to an equaliser. The BVB goalkeeper made an even better save with his outstretched left leg to deny Schick, before the offside flag once again ruled out a Leverkusen leveller. The hosts were lent a helping hand by Hradecky, who handled the ball outside his area to earn a late red card, and Dortmund made a winning start to the season, with thanks to their captain and custodian.
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- Like on the opening day of last season, Reus scored Dortmund's first goal of the season.
- Fifty-nine of Reus' 145 Bundesliga goals have given his team a 1-0 lead.
- BVB have won their opening game for the last eight seasons, including seven at home. They last dropped points on Matchday 1 with a 2-0 loss to Leverkusen when Karim Bellarabi scored the fastest goal in Bundesliga history (nine seconds).
- Hradecky saw red for the second time in his Bundesliga career.
- Edmond Tapsoba became the first outfield player to go in goal since Sebastian Polter deputised for Christian Wetklo at Mainz in November 2013.
- Schick was the most clinical Bundesliga player in 2021/22 with a shot efficiency of +5.1 as he plundered 24 goals from 27 appearances – a total second only to Robert Lewandowski.
Watch: Schlotterbeck: "The fans here are behind you like crazy"
Dortmund: Kobel - Meunier, Hummels, Schlotterbeck, Guerreiro (Wolf 84') - Dahoud, Bellingham - Malen (Can 84'), Reus (c), Adeyemi (Hazard 23') - Moukoko (Brandt 68')
Unused subs: Meyer, Reyna, Passlack, Kamara, Coulibaly
Out: Haller (testicular cancer), Özcan (foot), Rothe (hip), Süle (muscular)
Coach: Edin Terzic
Leverkusen: Hradecky (c) - Frimpong, Tah, Tapsoba, Hincapie (Bakker 78') - Palacios (Amiri 78'), Andrich (Aranguiz 13') - Bellarabi (Hlozek 46'), Demirbay (Azmoun 66'), Diaby - Schick
Unused subs: Lunev, Kossounou, Paulinho, Pohjanpalo
Out: Adli (match fitness), Wirtz (cruciate ligament)
Coach: Gerardo Seoane
Watch: Terzic: "If we fight like this we have a chance"
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