The Yellow-Blacks were well short of their best and it took until late into the second half for them to hit their stride, with substitute Jonas Hofmann the catalyst. The 21-year-old opened the scoring with a low finish, before winning a penalty that fellow replacement Marco Reus converted. Eintracht’s Kevin Kratz ensured a nervy finish with a late header, but an equaliser proved beyond the Lions, who are yet to pick up a point this term.
Expectation was in the air amongst the home crowd as all three of Dortmund’s new signings - Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan - started the game. However, Eintracht did an effective job of deflating the enthusiasm of the supporters with a stoic defensive display in the opening quarter of the game.
The unfavoured Lower Saxons might even have taken a second-minute lead, however, when Dennis Kruppke failed to connect to a dangerous low cross from Ken Reichel. Thereafter they were largely stationed in their own half as BVB dominated possession, but aside from two efforts off target from Robert Lewandowski, Dortmund were held at arm’s length with apparent ease.
BVB off colour
As compactly as Eintracht were defending, BVB’s approach play left a lot to be desired. Nuri Sahin was the axis on which their attacking moves were built, but there was little or no movement from the home side’s attacking players. The Turkey international went close to an opener with a free-kick from long range, yet the hosts simply didn’t look like scoring. Again it was rather Torsten Lieberknecht’s men that looked to force the issue, with Norman Theuerkauf volleying just wide of the post.
BVB coach Jürgen Klopp would have hoped that the half-time break would re-energise his players, but it was not immediately the case as a subdued BVB reached the hour-mark still not having had a shot on target, with Sahin and Lewandowski firing well wide. It took the introduction of Germany international Marco Reus to add some impetus, the 24-year-old crossing for Sven Bender to head wide.
Hofman to the rescue
Yet even Reus, after his bright start to the game, fell strangely quiet, and so it was left to another substitute to haul Dortmund into the lead. Hofmann had already made some bright runs, but he left a definitive mark on the game when he sprinted on to Mats Hummels’ pass and fired low into the far left corner via the inside of the post, cueing a collective sigh of relief at the Signal Iduna Park.
Hofmann’s busy approach was exactly what the five-time Bundesliga champions had been missing and he effectively settled the result when he was brought down in the box by Ermin Bikakcic, Reus stroking home the spot-kick. Kraft’s header made for a nervy finish but the hosts comfortably held on to maintain a 100 per cent start to the season and go top of the table.
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