Borussia Dortmund moved to within three points of second-placed RB Leipzig after a hard-fought 1-0 win over second-bottom Ingolstadt on Friday.
Borussia Dortmund 1-0 Ingolstadt
Goals: 1-0 Aubameyang (14’)
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang swept home a Marcel Schmelzer cross with the first chance of the game to bring up his league-leading 23rd goal of the campaign. Ingolstadt, however, played nothing like a team that had lost five of their previous seven matches. Home 'keeper Roman Bürki saved superbly from a Mathew Leckie header and then bravely at the feet of Sonny Kittel before the first half was done.
The outcome could have been very different had Ingolstadt taken their chances in the second half. The visitors almost restored parity within seconds of the restart following a mix-up between Dortmund centre backs Matthias Ginter and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, but Leckie fired wide after being sent clear on Bürki's goal. The Australian international was off target with the last kick of the game too after Bürki failed to hold a cross.
Man of the match
Aubameyang once again proved the difference for Dortmund. Clocked covering 30 metres faster than Usain Bolt in his youth, the Gabon captain had the jets on full throttle here, putting in a team-high 39 sprints and taking his goal with aplomb to bring up his 23rd of the season – the same number as the entire Ingolstadt team combined.
Dortmund were made to work, but they still managed to win ugly – perhaps for the first time this season. Die Schwarzgelben had put six goals past both Darmstadt and Bayer Leverkusen this term, as well as five past Wolfsburg and Hamburg. Securing third place for the fifth consecutive week is just reward for a team maturing fast.
- Gabon captain Aubameyang has scored nine goals in just five games in all competitions.Ingolstadt had 14 shots at goal compared to Dortmund's 10. The visitors slipped to their ninth away defeat in 13 matches this season.
Dortmund: Bürki, Piszczek, Sokratis, Ginter, Schmelzer, Durm, Castro (Merino 83'), Guerreiro (Weigl 56’), Kagawa, Pulisic (Schürrle 77’), Aubameyang
Coach: Thomas Tuchel
Ingolstadt: Hansen - Matip, Bregerie, Tisserand - Hadergjonaj, Cohen (Multhaup 83'), Morales (Hinterseer 90'), Suttner - Lezcano, Kittel (Groß 75’), Leckie
Coach: Maik Walpurgis
Watch: Tuchel: 'We fought hard for this result'