An 18th-minute strike by Bayer 04 Leverkusen's South Korean star Heung Min Son condemned Dortmund to their third defeat in four Bundesliga matches. To make matters worse, the loss came at the hands of one of their direct rivals in the league table.
"Nobody said very much. We were all too disappointed," Lewandowski revealed after the final whistle. "It’s a difficult situation for everybody, not just because of the defeat, but because of the injuries as well." Midfield duo Nuri Sahin and Sven Bender both suffered ankle knocksin the defeat to Sami Hyypiä's team, with the latter now set to miss Wednesday’s all-important UEFA Champions League tie against Olympique de Marseille.
Lewandowski says BVB must put Saturday’s defeat behind them as soon as possible, or risk elimination from Europe’s premier club competition. "We can’t bury our heads in the sand. We still have a vital Champions League match to come and we’re desperate to qualify," he said. "We have to get over the defeat to Bayer and focus on our job in Marseille."
Must win in Marseille
If Dortmund are to stand any chance of getting the win they need to ensure qualification to the last 16 of the competition, Lewandowski knows they must improve on Saturday’s display. "We just didn’t play that well," he admitted. "Obviously we have injury problems, but we can't be happy with our performance. It’s not a pleasant situation to be in."
Lewandowski’s team-mate Sokratis, who was shown a late red card against Leverkusen for a second bookable offence, feels BVB simply aren’t getting the rub of the green at the moment. "This year, we haven’t had a lot of luck because many players are out who are important for the team. But we must concentrate on our next game."
As if Dortmund's injury list wasn't long enough, Lewandowski also picked up a knock against die Werkself and was seen limping out of the changing room after the match. "I hope it’s not too serious," said the 25-year-old. "I was afraid it was going to be worse than it is. There are still a few days to go before the Marseille game, so I’ll hopefully have enough time to rest."
Anything other than victory in the south of France would mean Jürgen Klopp's team have to rely on Arsenal FC avoiding defeat against SSC Napoli. Having suffered a 2-1 defeat in Italy on Matchday 1 of the group stage, last year's beaten finalists at Wembley would much rather keep matters in their own hands. Indeed, as Sokratis observed: "Wednesday is our final. We have to win."
Dietmar Nolte / Matthew Howarth