bundesliga

Christian Pulisic scores on home farewell as Borussia Dortmund beat Fortuna Düsseldorf to keep title race alive

Christian Pulisic scored the opener for Borussia Dortmund in his last outing at the Signal Iduna Park as BVB saw off Fortuna Düsseldorf to take the Bundesliga title race to the final day.

Borussia Dortmund 3-2 Fortuna Düsseldorf
Goals: 1-0
Pulisic (41’), 1-1 Fink (47’), 2-1 Delaney (53’), 3-1 Götze (90'+2), 3-2 Kownacki (90'+5)
Red card: Bodzek (82')

With Dortmund under all the pressure to get a result, and Düsseldorf able to relax in knowing their safety has long since been confirmed, the home side were frustrated in a difficult first half. It almost became even more frustrating when Dodi Lukebakio dribbled past Julian Weigl before slotting the ball past Marwin Hitz, starting in place of Roman Bürki, but the offside flag was raised to keep Dortmund's title hopes alive. The home side then kicked into gear, beginning to show their passion and desire with chances coming and going for Thomas Delaney and Raphael Guerreiro. Then came Pulisic’s moment. The American kept himself well-positioned in the box to head home from Delaney’s knock-down at the back post. His second goal in as many games, and 11th in total at BVB’s home.

The second half began with incredible drama as Düsseldorf drew level. Oliver Fink’s header from the near post looked to be easy for Hitz to handle, but the back-up goalkeeper let it slip through his hands and into the net. Dortmund responded almost immediately though as Delaney levelled. He was able to gather his initially blocked shot and find the bottom corner at the second time of asking. The drama, as expected, was far from over. Lukebakio won his side a penalty after a foul from Hitz. But the loanee from English Premier League side Watford dragged his spot-kick wide of goal, keeping the home side ahead. Dortmund remained composed and their task became easier in the final 10 minutes when Adam Bodzek was sent off for a high tackle on substitute Jadon Sancho. Götze scored Dortmund's third with a shot across Rensing just after Pulisic was given a raucous send-off in the final moments. Dawid Kownacki scored in the final seconds, but Dortmund's win with the help of Pulisic's goal takes them within two points of Bayern Munich, who drew away to Leipzig.

Watch: Pulisic's emotional farewell

Match stats

  • This result means the title race goes down to the final day of the season, with two points the gap between Bayern (+52 goal difference) and Dortmund (+35).
  • This was Pulisic's last game at the Signal Iduna Park as a Dortmund player. The USA international has scored twice in his last two games.
  • Alcacer has scored more long-range goals this season than any other player in the Bundesliga (five), including three direct free-kicks.
  • Dortmund are the first team in Bundesliga history to score at least two goals in each of their home matches in a season.
  • Sancho has had a direct hand in 25 league goals this season (11 scored, 14 assisted), more than any other Dortmund player. Reus is next with 16 goals and eight assists.
  • Belgian forwards Lukebakio and Raman are Düsseldorf's top scorers this season with 10 apiece.

Line-ups

Dortmund: Hitz – Piszczek (c), Weigl, Akanji, Guerreiro – Witsel, Delaney – Pulisic (Schmelzer 90'+1), Götze (Philipp 90'+5), Bruun Larsen (Sancho 61’) – Alcacer
Unused subs: Oelschlägel, Balerdi, Dahoud, Toprak
Out: Bürki (thigh), Diallo (knock), Hakimi (metatarsal), Reus (suspended), Wolf (suspended), Zagadou (knee)
Coach: Lucien Favre

Düsseldorf: Rensing – Zimmermann, Ayhan, Hoffmann, Gießelmann – Lukebakio (Morales 85'), Stöger, Fink (c) (Karaman 76'), Bodzek, Suttner (Raman 67’) – Kownacki
Unused subs: Drobny, Barkok, Hennings, Kaminski
Out: Zimmer (ankle)
Coach: Friedhelm Funkel