Goals from Erling Haaland and Gio Reyna could not prevent Borussia Dortmund from going out of the DFB Cup at the hands of Werder Bremen in a five-goal thriller at the Weser Stadion.
Bremen were in need of a confidence booster and that is precisely what they were given by Davie Selke, who marked his first home game back in a Bremen shirt with a goal. Milot Rashica's shot was spilled by Marwin Hitz to the feet of Bremen's returning son, who rifled in from close range. Dortmund were shaken and Bremen went for the jugular, doubling their lead through Leonardo Bittencourt with a goal he will not forget in a rush. Dortmund cleared a corner to what seemed to be a safe distance, but Bittencourt made the sweetest of contacts with an unstoppable volley which arrowed past Hitz into the top corner, giving the hosts a surprise, but deserved 2-0 lead at the break.
Haaland was a logical introduction by Dortmund coach Lucien Favre at the start of the second half, and no sooner had he entered the fray and he was celebrating bringing Dortmund back into the game, turning Julian Brandt's cross in from close range. Bremen responded well and restored their two-goal lead through Rashica, who beat the offside trap and rifled a shot across Hitz. Reyna was sent on as Dortmund threw caution to the wind and just like with Haaland, the move paid dividends. The USMNT international even had some of the home fans applauding an outstanding moment of skill which culminated in a curling effort into the top right-hand corner. Dortmund had chances to level, notably through Jadon Sancho and even Hitz - up for a late corner - but Bremen survived a late onslaught to take their place in the quarter-finals.
- Rashica has scored in each of his last six cup matches, beating the club record shared by Wynton Rufer, Uwe Reinders and Heinz-Dieter Hasebrink.
- Reyna has become the youngest ever goalscorer in the DFB Cup at 17 years, two months and 12 days.
- Bremen have scored 31 goals in the DFB Cup since the start of last season, which is the most in the competition ahead of Bayern Munich (22). Each of their last ten fixtures have seen them net at least two goals, while they have scored in their last 40 DFB Cup fixtures at the Weserstadion stretching back to April 1988.
- Haaland scored four goals in his two Austrian Cup matches for Red Bull Salzburg this season, and now has one in the DFB Cup. The teenager’s seven goals in three Bundesliga games for Dortmund is a league record.
- Dortmund have scored in each of their last 21 games on the road, which is a club record.
Bremen: Pavlenka – Veljkovic, Vogt, Moisander (c) – Bittencourt, M. Eggestein, Klassen, Friedl – Osako (Bartels 89'), Rashica (Toprak 90+5') – Selke (49' Sargent)
Unused subs: Kapino, Pizarro, Sahin, J. Eggestein, Groß, Goller
Out: Augustinsson (thigh), Bargfrede (calf), Füllkrug (torn ACL), Gebre Selassie (groin), Lang (thigh), Langkamp (knee), Möhwald (knee)
Coach: Florian Kohfeldt
Dortmund: Hitz – Akanji, Hummels, Zagadou (Reyna 66') – Hakimi, Witsel, Brandt, Schulz – Sancho, Hazard (Haaland 46'), Reus (c) (Can 89')
Unused subs: Bürki, Dahoud, Götze, Balerdi, Piszczek, Schmelzer
Out: Delaney (knee), Guerreiro (muscular)
Coach: Lucien Favre
AS IT HAPPENED:
Mats Hummels nearly snatches a draw in the dying seconds, but he misses the target. Bremen have held on and reached the quarter-finals on their 121st birthday!
90+4' HITZ HEADER!
Marwin Hitz is up for a corner and he very nearly levels! In scenes reminiscent of Jens Lehmann, he heads just over the crossbar.
90+3' PAVLENKA DENIES HAALAND!
What an amazing save! You would bet any money on Haaland bringing Dortmund with his header from six yards out, but Pavlenka responds instinctively to push the ball over the crossbar.
90' FIVE MINUTES TO GO
There will be five minutes of stoppage time.
89' CAN DEBUT
Emre Can comes on for his Dortmund debut, replacing Marco Reus, while Bartels is on for Osako.
88' REUS SO CLOSE!
Marco Reus cannot believe that he has not equalised! His low shot is pounced on by Pavlenka, who defends Bremen's lead. Expect at least five minutes of stoppage time, so still some time for Dortmund to find that equaliser.
85' YELLOW CARDS
After consulting with VAR, and going to have a look at the incident himself, the referee has decided to show Reyna and Moisander a yellow card, perhaps judging that the US forward had taken a dive in seeking a penalty, while the Bremen defender's reaction has been sanctioned. It's still 11 v 11, though.
Reyna wants a penalty, but it is not given. A Bremen defender reacts and appears to push Reyna in the face, and the USMNT youngster falls to the floor. Some work for VAR here…
78' WOW GIO REYNA!
If you thought Bittencourt's goal was a cracker, you have not seen anything yet. Gio Reyna has made his mark on German football with a goal which is going to go viral. A stepover and a sweet curling effort into the far corner of Pavlenka's goal could make this one of the best first senior goals in the history of football. Oh, and Dortmund are back in this.
72' HOLD YOUR BREATH...
…it's Haaland. He's through on goal and takes it round Pavlenka, but the angle is too tight, even for his standards, to turn the ball back inside the post.
70' AS WE WERE SAYING…ANOTHER GOAL!
Well there has been another goal and it has come somewhat surprisingly for the hosts! Milot Rashica has only just beaten the offside trap to get beyond the Dortmund defence and strike emphatically past Marwin Hitz!
69' REYNA SO CLOSE!
Almost a second goal in as many minutes, and it would have been Dortmund's second substitute celebrating. However, he is denied by Jiri Pavlenka's trailing leg! Something tells me we have not seen the last goal in this tie.
67' HAALAND GOAL!
Who else? Like in the Bundesliga, Haaland just scores and scores! Julian Brandt sends in the cross from the right and Haaland is right under the crossbar and needs just to get a touch to the ball to score, and he follows the ball right into the back of the net.
66' REYNA ON
Gio Reyna is now on for Borussia Dortmund in a very bold move from Lucien Favre. He has come on for Zagadou and it appears he has taken his place on the left wing.
65' REUS BOOKED
You can see the tension is rising here and Marco Reus is infuriated a foul is not given against him. He races over to the referee to complain, and duly receives a yellow card in return.
57' HAALAND CREATES OPENING
Haaland has hit the headlines for his goalscoring, but he almost sets up Nico Schulz before berating the wing-back for having a go on goal from a tight angle, and missing, when Haaland felt he was better placed to receive the ball back. Just another sign of Haaland's inherent hunger.
54' SANCHO BLOCKED
A bit of pinball in the Bremen area and Sancho sees a route to goal. No sooner has he pulled the trigger than that gap has been closed by some brave Bremen defending. With Dortmund forced to chase the game, there could be a lot of desperate defending to come.
52' BREAK ON FOR SARGENT!
A sloppy pass from Zagadou gifts Sargent the chance to get Bremen breaking, but the USMNT international returns the favour to Zagadou and gifts possession back to Die Schwarzgelben. Will Bremen need a third goal to reach the last eight, or are these two going to be enough?
49' SARGENT ENTERS
The free-kick was struck into the wall by Marco Reus, danger averted for Bremen. And here comes Sargent, replacing Davie Selke.
48' FREE-KICK FOR DORTMUND
Haaland gets his first touch of the ball, but he is hacked down from behind for a free-kick in a dangerous position for Dortmund. Meanwhile, Josh Sargent is preparing to come on for Bremen.
SECOND HALF UNDERWAY
We're back underway at the Weser Stadion and one – perhaps obvious – change has been made. Erling Haaland makes his DFB Cup debut, and if he can make the same impression in the cup as he has in the Bundesliga, we are in for an interesting second half here! Hazard makes way.
HALF-TIME! BREMEN WITH THE SHOCK LEAD
This is a turn up for the books, with Dortmund two goals down at the interval. They were in control of the match early on, but Selke's strike gave Bremen confidence and they've improved as the game has gone on. Bittencourt's worldy has daylight between the teams at the interval, but with Haaland on the bench, don't write Dortmund off just yet.
44' CRUCIAL SAVE FROM HITZ!
Dortmund give the ball away cheaply in midfield and Bremen immediately spring forward. Selke sprints away with it and Hummels slips over just at the wrong moment, allowing the Werder striker to charge clean through on goal. He must score... but Hitz reads his attempted shot towards the far post and pulls off a brilliant save that might just keep his side in with a chance of a comeback.
40' DORTMUND FRUSTRATED
For all their early dominance and territorial superiority, things just aren't clicking for the away side here. Bremen are aggressive in the tackles and are sticking to coach Kohfeldt's game plan of remaining tight at the back and doing damage on the counter. It's worked perfectly so far.
36' HAKIMI ON THE COUNTER
Rashica charges forward for Bremen, but when Selke loses possession Dortmund instantly turn on the turbos. Brandt sends Hakimi away down the right wing but he doesn't have many options ahead of him, forcing him to come inside and pass square to Witsel. That gives Werder time to get back and crowd Dortmund out.
32' TIME FOR HAALAND?
He's scored in all three games he's played for Dortmund so far, netting five of his seven as a substitute. The 19-year-old was also the catalyst for BVB's come-from-behind win against Augsburg on Matchday 18, so he has previous. He'll surely be on in the second half if the score stays like this.
30' SCREAMER FROM BITTENCOURT!
Dortmund fail to properly clear a corner and when it bounces to Bittencourt around 10 yards outside the visitors' box, he wastes no time in absolutely spanking a vicious shot into the top corner!
28' BREMEN MORE DANGEROUS
Dortmund have had 65 per cent of possession so far, but it's Werder who have had more shots (four to one) after weathering the early storm to grow into the game.
24' REUS FREE-KICK
Sancho is brought down by Bittencourt just outside the Bremen box and is shown a yellow card for his troubles. Reus takes the ensuing free-kick, but Vogt - standing in the wall - gets a head on the ball to divert it clear.
20' WIDE FROM MOISANDER
The goal has visibly lifted the home side, who are getting forward with greater purpose now. Moisander tries his luck from the edge of the box, but slices it just wide with the outside of his boot.
16' SELKE GIVES BREMEN THE LEAD!
Hakimi gets caught in possession on the left-hand edge of his own penalty area, gifting the ball to Rashica, who cuts inside and drills a low shot at goal. Hitz makes a good save but can only parry it to the feet of Selke, who smashes in the rebound!
11' FIRST CHANCE FOR BREMEN!
Osako does really well to control a long ball to the back post and knock it into the middle for Selke. Dortmund's defence is in chaos, and Selke lays it off to a teammate... ending up with Klaassen smashing a shot from the edge of the area just over the bar.
8' VISITORS COMFORTABLE
Bremen are trying to burst forward on the break but aren't having much joy at present. Dortmund are just snuffing out counters before they really begin, and then look to get forward quickly themselves. It could be a long old game for Bremen at this rate.
4' REUS GOES CLOSE!
Hakimi plays a quick one-two down the right wing and tears away into space. He delivers a superb ball into the middle, right across the face of goal. Reus only needs to get a touch on it to put Dortmund ahead, but it's just too strong for him and the chance goes begging.
3' DORTMUND HOGGING POSSESSION
The visitors are confidently stroking the ball around among themselves in midfield and in defence, with Bremen happy to sit back and invite them to attack. The home side are only really springing into action right now when BVB approach the final third.
Dortmund get the ball rolling at the Weserstadion! Here we go!
IN THE TUNNEL
The teams are lined up and about to take to the pitch. We'll be under way very shorty.
Left-sided specialist Raphael Guerreiro started against Union Berlin at the weekend, but is unavailable here due to a muscular strain.
Bremen's recent form may contribute to them being the underdogs ahead of kick-off, but they have been a bogey team for Dortmund of late.
The Green-Whites have won one and drawn three of the team's five most recent Bundesliga matches, while they've also won the last two encounters in the cup - knocking BVB out at this stage last season.
PROLIFIC ATTACK AGAINST SHAKY DEFENCE
Dortmund have been unstoppable so far in 2020, hitting 15 goals in their three games to date, making them the league's most free-scoring side this year.
Pit that against a Bremen defence that has conceded 46 Bundesliga goals (only Mainz have let in more with 47) this season, and you have a recipe for entertainment.
BVB may be the favourites here, but cup ties are always fickle, unpredictable beasts.
DORTMUND TEAM NEWS
Bremen will be relieved to see Dortmund goal hero Erling Haaland on the bench, although coach Lucien Favre may be saving him to wreak havoc on a tiring home defence in the second half. Thorgan Hazard starts in his place, while Nico Schulz also begins.
Winter signing Emre Can could make his debut here after being named among the substitutes. Marwin Hitz is handed a rare start in goal, with regular No.1 Roman Bürki on the bench.
BREMEN TEAM NEWS
Defender Milos Veljkovic has been declared fit to play for the hosts, whose injury worries continue to ease. He replaces former BVB centre-back Ömer Toprak in the starting XI, while another ex-Dortmund player - Nuri Sahin - is also on the bench. Yuya Osako is preferred here, with Leo Bittencourt dropping deeper in midfield.
New signing Davie Selke keeps his place in the side, meaning USA international Josh Sargent has to settle for a place among the substitutes.
The DFB Cup round of 16 action continues apace this evening with 2017 winners Dortmund away to a struggling Bremen side in need of a morale-boosting win to carry over into the Bundesliga.