Brussels - Borussia Dortmund maintained their unblemished record at the start of the 2014/15 UEFA Champions League campaign as they defended top spot in Group D courtesy of a 3-0 win on the road against Belgian side RSC Anderlecht.
Ciro Immobile’s early opener and an Adrian Ramos second-half double saw BVB cruise to victory, but in the end the final scoreline didn’t do justice to Jürgen Klopp’s side, whose form on the European circuit continues to be a far cry from their domestic fortunes.
BVB head coach Klopp made four changes to the side that featured in the Revierderby and thoughts of the defeat to arch rivals FC Schalke 04 were soon banished as the visitors got off to the best possible start. Shinji Kagawa, back in the starting line-up, provided a delightful scooped pass, allowing Immobile to break the offside trap before slotting the ball beyond Silvio Porto with less than four minutes on the clock. Both sides were contributing to the fast-paced nature of proceedings, but with an early goal behind them it was Dortmund who assumed control, thanks in no small part to their relentless pressing and eye-catching combination play. The visitors continually threatened in the final third with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang firing wide with the goal at his mercy, before Kevin Großkreutz had an effort ruled out for offside towards the end of an entertaining first half in which the hosts only registered just one shot on goal.
Ramos at the ready
Having failed to make the most of the pressure they generated before the break, BVB continued to push forwards in the hopes of engineering themselves a greater cushion as Aubameyang and Immobile both drew sharp saves out of Proto within ten minutes of the restart. However, with the tie poised so precariously, Anderlecht grew in confidence with every passing minute, going closest through Chancel Mbemba’s cross-cum-shot that drifted just wide of the upright. In contrast to their recent Bundesliga performances, though, Dortmund were defending with diligence and discipline, and the introduction of Ramos breathed new life into their forward movements, resulting in the Colombian putting the finishing touch to Lucasz Piszczek’s sublime cross 20 minutes from time. The hosts responded with Matias Suarez smashing an effort off the post, but when Ramos bagged his brace within 13 minutes of his introduction, it was plain sailing for Dortmund, who now have six points from a possible six in Europe’s elite club competition.