Bayer Leverkusen extended their unbeaten run to nine consecutive matches with a 1-1 draw at home to Borussia Dortmund, despite playing with ten men for most of the match.
Bayer Leverkusen 1-1 Borussia Dortmund
Goals: 1-0 Volland (30'), 1-1 Yarmolenko (73')
Sent off: Wendell (41')
The contrast in confidence was clear to see right from the off at the BayArena: Leverkusen, unbeaten in eight coming into this game, oozed self-belief and immediately sought to pressure a Dortmund side without a Bundesliga win since Matchday 7. Kai Havertz hit the crossbar with an early header before in-form striker Kevin Volland broke the deadlock, clinically punishing a defensive mistake to sprint clear from the halfway line, go around Roman Bürki and tap home. The visitors were gifted a lifeline just before half-time, however, when Wendell was sent off for a hefty tackle on Gonzalo Castro.
Dortmund tried to make their extra man count in the second period and dominated possession as Leverkusen stayed compact at the back in an attempt to protect their lead. The hosts did a superb job of stifling their guests, and almost extended their lead when Volland went one-on-one with Bürki again, only for the goalkeeper to make a save. It was a costly miss, as Andrey Yarmolenko equalised almost immediately after a well-worked attack. Both teams pushed for a winner in the closing stages, but there was to be no late twist as each had to settle for a point.
Man of the match
Jonathan Tah was a commanding figure at the heart of the Leverkusen defence, marshalling the backline and winning virtually every one of his challenges to help his side earn a valuable point.
- Volland's goal means he has now scored in four consecutive Bundesliga games for only the second time in his career, having previously done so in 2013 with Hoffenheim. Volland has put his side 1-0 up five times this season - more than any other Bundesliga player.Benjamin Henrichs was in the Leverkusen starting line-up for the first time since Matchday 6 on 24 September. Dortmund's Neven Subotic made only his second league appearance of the season. Leverkusen are currently on the Bundesliga’s longest unbeaten run (nine matches).Dortmund are without a win in seven games in the league, picking up just three of a possible 21 points.Bayer have scored in every league game this season.Volland is the Bundesliga’s highest-scoring German this term (nine goals).Leverkusen are yet to lose at home in 2017/18.
Bayer Leverkusen: Leno – L. Bender (c), Tah, S. Bender – Henrichs (Retsos 46'), Aranguiz (Baumgartlinger 62'), Havertz, Wendell – Brandt, Bailey – Volland (Bellarabi 78')
Subs: Özcan, Retsos, Alario, Mehmedi, Baumgartlinger, Pohjanpalo, Bellarabi
Absentees: Kohr (suspended)
Coach: Heiko Herrlich
Borussia Dortmund: Bürki - Subotic, Sokratis, Schmelzer (c) - Pulisic, Sahin, Weigl (Dahoud 65'), Castro (Kagawa 44'), Guerreiro - Yarmolenko, Philipp (Schürrle 8')
Subs: Weidenfeller, Bartra, Sancho, Dahoud, Schürrle, Kagawa, Toprak
Absentees: Aubameyang (suspended), Zagadou (knock), Reus (light training), Götze (ankle ligaments), Piszczek (knee), Durm (hip), Rode (pelvis), Isak (knee)
Coach: Peter Bosz
Watch: Volland: "We're a tough team to beat"