Borussia Dortmund kept up the pressure on Bundesliga leaders FC Bayern München after coming from behind to ease past FC Augsburg 3-1 at the WWK ARENA on Sunday night.
FC Augsburg - Borussia Dortmund
Dortmund dominated the early possession but it was Augsburg who threatened first. Happy to sit back and hit the visitors on the counter, the Bavarians broke the deadlock when Caiuby raced clear on the left wing before cutting the ball back for Alfred Finnbogason, and the Iceland international tapped home his third goal since his winter arrival from Olympiacos FC. Shorn of top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - on compassionate leave after his grandfather's passing this week - Die Schwarz-Gelben initially struggled in the final third, but they got back on level terms on the stroke of half-time after Nuri Sahin laid the ball off for Henrikh Mkhitaryan to steer home his tenth Bundesliga goal of the campaign.
Thomas Thuchel brought Gonzalo Castro on in place of Marco Reus for the start of the second half, and the change reaped its reward 20 minutes later. Adrian Ramos held the ball up in the Augsburg box before laying the ball off to Castro, who curled the ball into the far corner. Ramos went from maker to taker soon after, converting his fifth goal of the campaign at the second time of asking. Dortmund then closed out the win with over 75 percent of possession to seal a 3-1 victory that keeps them breathing down champions Bayern's necks.
Man of the match
Mkhitaryan was effective in defence and attack. His equaliser saw him claim a personal season-best ten Bundesliga goals, he finished the fixture with a team-high 26 sprints and 18 tackles, and he could have had more than one assist to his name had his colleagues finished of more of the chances he created.
The title race is alive and well with seven games left to play. Augsburg's unorthodox 3-4-3 formation had Dortmund in trouble early on, but Tuchel showed tactical nous in bringing on the more defensively-aware Castro for Reus, and Die Schwarz-Gelben maintained their unbeaten record in the Rückrunde.
- Finnbogason's opener was the first time Dortmund had conceded away from home in 317 minutes of football.Dortmund's Reus and Augsburg's Markus Feulner each made their 200th Bundesliga appearances.Dortmund remains the only Bundesliga side not to lose a league game in 2016, picking up 26 of a possible 30 points since the turn of the year.Dortmund have emerged victorious in all eight fixtures following a midweek UEFA Europa League outing.Augsburg have won just one of their ten games in the second half of the season - a 1-0 victory over bottom-of-the table Hannover 96 on Matchday 22.
Augsburg: Manninger - Klavan, Gouweleeuw, Hong - Verhaegh (c), Max - Kohr, Baier (Feulner 46') - Koo (Bobadilla 78'), Caiuby - Finnbogason
Dortmund: Bürki - Piszczek, Hummels (c), Sokratis, Durm - Weigl - Sahin (Passlack 68') - Mkhitaryan, Reus (Castro 46') - Kagawa (Leitner 62') - Ramos