Borussia Dortmund will have to wait to confirm their place in next season's UEFA Champions League after being frustrated by Werder Bremen and their inspired goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka in the final game of Matchday 32.
Goals: 0-1 Reus (19'), 1-1 Delaney (45')
After a lively opening at the Weser Stadium, Bremen had the first real opportunity as Ludwig Augustinsson flashed an effort just off target. Dortmund then had a couple of chances in quick succession, with Marco Reus clipping a delightful backheel into the path of Lukasz Piszczek – whose shot was blocked – before Maximilian Philipp drew a save from Pavlenka. BVB soon broke the deadlock as another Philipp attempt was charged down by Milos Veljkovic, and the rebound fell kindly for Reus to fire in his sixth goal of the season. Determined to extend their 10-game unbeaten run on home soil, Bremen came roaring back and could have equalised through Zlatko Junuzovic and Max Kruse, but the former was denied by Roman Bürki and the latter failed to hit the target from close range. Reus really should have made it 2-0 just before half-time after an inch-perfect through ball from Mario Götze, but he failed to beat Pavlenka one-on-one – and two minutes later, Bremen were level. Bürki came racing off his line to block a Maximilian Eggestein header, and the returning Thomas Delaney was perfectly placed to nod the rebound over the Switzerland keeper and make it 1-1 at the interval.
Bremen hit the ground running in the second half, with Eggestein forcing Sokratis into making a decisive block before trying his luck from distance – but Dortmund began to take control of proceedings around the hour mark. After Ömer Toprak had a goal correctly ruled out for offside, Reus hit the post before Manuel Akanji cut in from the left and saw his sizzling effort sensationally tipped over by Pavlenka. Reus came close to putting the ball into his own net after Junuzovic whipped a dangerous ball across the six-yard box, but still the visitors looked more likely to get that all-important second goal. Substitute Andre Schürrle found himself one-on-one with Pavlenka, and after his shot was parried Jadon Sancho could only head the rebound onto the bar from close range. Philipp then ripped a half-volley just over the bar and Piszczek came close to scoring an own goal of his own as the chances continued to flow at both ends, with Schürrle once again denied by the excellent Pavlenka. Peter Stöger's men huffed and puffed until the very last kick of the game – another rasping drive from Reus – but the northern side held on for a draw, extending their home unbeaten run to 11 games.
- Reus has now scored 11 Bundesliga goals in 15 career outings against Bremen. The only side against which he has found the net as often is Mainz – Dortmund's next opponents.
- Delaney scored his first Bundesliga goal on home soil, and his seventh in total.
- Pavlenka made five decisive saves to help Bremen salvage a point.
- Werder extended their club record home unbeaten run to 11 matches under Florian Kohfeldt.
- After consecutive losses at Bayern Munich (0-6) and Schalke (0-2), Dortmund avoided what would have been a club record of three straight away defeats.
- The game had no fewer than 34 shots on goal - 16 for Bremen and 18 for Dortmund.
Watch: Reus: "I should've scored a second"
Bremen: Pavlenka – Gebre Selassie, Veljkovic, Langkamp, Augustinsson – M. Eggestein, Delaney, Junuzovic (c) – Gondorf (Friedl 89'), Kruse, Rashica (J. Eggestein 69')
Unused subs: Drobny, Caldirola, Bauer, Zhang, Belfodil
Absentees: Zetterer (wrist), Bargfrede and Kainz (suspended), Bartels (Achilles tendon)
Coach: Florian Kohfeldt
Dortmund: Bürki - Piszczek, Sokratis, Toprak, Akanji - Weigl - Pulisic (Schürrle 61'), Götze, Reus (c), Sancho - Philipp (Yarmolenko 79')
Unused subs: Weidenfeller, Sahin, Toljan, Schmelzer, Kagawa
Absentees: Zagadou (thigh), Rode (groin), Batshuayi (ankle), Guerreiro (fitness)
Coach: Peter Stöger