Paderborn 1-6 Borussia Dortmund: A Ruthless Second-Half Rout

As the 2019/20 Bundesliga season slowly draws to its conclusion after a coronavirus-induced two-month break, SC Paderborn played host to Borussia Dortmund at the Benteler-Arena on Sunday evening, in a game that was a part of the 29th round.

Going into the match, both teams were desperate for points, desperate for any glimpse of hope for what would’ve been their respective start-of-term goals to be achieved. Of course, these two teams were setting the bar at different heights.

Having beaten second-place Dortmund directly on Tuesday, table-toppers Bayern Munich dismantled Fortuna Dusseldorf on Saturday and what was a four-point gap only a week ago was stretched into 10. Dortmund simply had to win and get it back to seven to stand any kind of chance of usurping the defending champions. On the other hand, bottom-side Paderborn’s fate seemed sealed as they sat eight points behind the play-off-bound Dusseldorf, but a win would have at least given them a vague hope of survival.

Team News

Paderborn boss Steffen Baumgart was without the services of defender Luca Kilian and midfielder Klaus Gjasula.

Leopold Zingerle was in goal. Uwe Hunemeier and Christian Strohdiek paired up at the back, with fullbacks Mohamed Drager and Jamilu Collins either side of them. Sebastian Schonlau provided additional protection for the back four, forming a midfield line of five together with Sebastian Vasiliadis, Dennis Srbeny, Christopher Antwi-Adjej and Gerrit Holtmann. Streli Mamba was the lone striker.

Lucien Favre in the away dugout couldn’t call upon his star striker Erling Haaland who injured his knee against Bayern. Midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud suffered the same fate, though his issue is reportedly much more serious and he isn’t expected back for the rest of the campaign. Defender Dan-Axel Zagadou, wing-back Nico Shulz, and the team captain, winger Marco Reus, were also absent.

Roman Burki stood between the posts. Mats Hummels was joined by Manuel Akanji and Lukasz Piszczek in defence. The midfield duo of Thomas Delaney and Emre Can was flanked by wing-backs Raphael Guerreiro and Achraf Hakimi. Further up, Julian Brandt and Jadon Sancho supported Thorgan Hazard in attack.

The First Half

Wasting no time, the visitors took control from the first whistle. They had no problems with taking the ball to Paderborn’s half quickly, and the first danger for Zingerle’s goal came in the third minute when Can broke down the right and squared it into the box, but Drager was alert and cleared it from the six-yard line. The home team managed occasionally to turn the flow the other way, but those moments were rare.

However, Paderborn had a decent chance in the 11th minute, but Antwi-Adjej dragged his 15-yard shot from a tight angle wide of the far post. The moment gave the players in black-and-blue some confidence and the same player had a go from a similar position three minutes later, this time sending his effort over the bar.

The ball was now spending more time in Dortmund’s half. The visitors lost it frequently whenever they moved across the halfway line. Brandt and Sancho were being stifled, and Hazard seemed completely cut off. The situation prompted a momentary change of approach from Favre’s men in the 17th minute, and a great long ball from Piszczek found Hazard’s run in behind. The Belgian did extremely well to get a shot on target at full pace from a tight angle, but Zingerle was positioned well.

Several minutes of fierce pressure from Dortmund followed, but Paderborn survived and moved forward again. The home team mostly attacked down the left side, and duels between Collins and Dortmund’s Hakimi were frequent and fierce.

In the 26th minute, Dortmund broke forward quickly and Sancho and Brandt did very well to set Guerreiro up for a shot from around 15 yards. Zingerle was beaten, but Collins managed to deflect it wide at the last split-second. Right on the half-hour mark, Strohdiek short-changed his goalkeeper with a headed back-pass and Hazard pounced, almost taking the ball past Zingerle, but Zingerle’s reflex reaction was impeccable. Less than a minute later a sharp low cross from the left across the six yards was cleared right in front of the onrushing Hazard.

Dortmund’s initiative continued towards the end of the half and Paderborn occasionally seemed about to crumble under the hail of chances, but they somehow survived again. In the 44th minute, Emre Can tried his luck from 20 yards but his shot went high over the bar. Less than a minute later, Hakimi broke down the right and squared the ball across the box. Both Hazard and Sancho allowed it to slide through for Brandt who was coming in from the other side, but Brandt also failed to hit the target.

The Second Half

Dortmund started the second half in a bit of a stupor and they were almost punished for it in the 49th minute when a sharp low ball that Holtmann sent diagonally across the box almost found Mamba, but the striker couldn’t reach it in time. It was a strong wakeup call for the players in black-and-yellow and they responded by creating two fantastic chances within three minutes; but Zingerle first produced a magnificent save to deny Hakimi, and then Hazard failed to divert a low ball across the six yards goalwards.

But in the 55th minute, Dortmund finally broke the deadlock. A good diagonal pass found the run of Guerreiro on the left. The wing-back then engaged Can further down the flank, who whipped in a cross. Zingerle parried it short, and Hazard reacted more quickly than Hunemeier, putting it into the empty net.

0-1.

The visitors doubled their lead within two minutes. Paderborn moved forward but lost the ball quickly, and Delaney’s lovely through pass found Brandt running into the box from the left. Brandt then simply squared it towards the far post, from where Sancho had no difficulty whatsoever to slam it in.

0-2.

From that point on, Paderborn obviously had nothing to lose and they pushed forward with all their might. In the 63rd minute, Holtmann managed to put the ball in the net after a set-piece but the linesman had raised his flag for offisde. Less than a minute later a complete blunder from Burki could have caused Dortmund serious problems, but Delaney saved his goalkeeper’s skin with a calm reaction.

Paderborn boss Baumgart made a double change in a bid to freshen his attack in the 65th minute. Sven Michel and Ben Zolinski replaced Mamba and Srbeny. Favre’s first change was to introduce Axel Witsel for Delaney three minutes later.

Dortmund tried to take matters into their hands afterwards, but Emre Can not only wasted a good opportunity with a feeble shot from the edge of the box that Zingerle had no problems with, he also gifted Paderborn a great chance to bounce back; which they took.

Drager broke into the box down the right and tried to send the ball across, hitting Can on the elbow. The referee blew the whistle and pointed to the spot. Hunemeier stepped up.

1-2.

But the home team’s new hope was short-lived. In their very next move, Dortmund broke down the left through Hazard, and the Belgian pulled it back for Sancho. The young England international wasn’t marked nearly well enough and he took advantage of the situation by smacking it accurately past the Paderborn ‘keeper.

1-3.

It was now much easier for Dortmund to play patiently. They were content with letting Paderborn have the ball but preventing them from doing much with it. They were good at that, and there were always the possibility of releasing the pace of Hazard on the counterattack.

Favre made a double change with 10 minutes to go, introducing Giovanni Reyna for Brandt and Marcel Schmelzer for Guerreiro. Baumgart responded by withdrawing the hardly visible Vasiliadis and sending on Dennis Jastrzembski.

Fatigue was obviously kicking in for Paderborn players towards the end, and Dortmund took the chance to seal the deal in the 85th minute. They broke down the left again and eventually Schmelzer set up Hakimi for a shot, and the Real Madrid loanee was ruthless.

1-4.

Three minutes later they almost made it five. Paderborn moved forward in numbers again, but Sancho took the ball and marched on the counterattack. He involved Reyna who broke into the box down the right, but his shot went wide of the far post.

But with a minute to go, they did make it five. Another lightning-quick counterattack was eventually put away by Schmelzer from close range.

1-5.

And just as it seemed the hosts’ misery was over, it happened again. Paderborn took a corner which was cleared as far as Sancho. The winger charged forward, and he and Hazard had a two-on-one situation. In the end, Sancho finished it off himself.

1-6.

The Afterthought

It was an interesting game in certain ways, despite the final score. It was a clear proof of the incredible talent of this very young Dortmund team, much more so than when they contested against the experience and the winning mentality of Bayern in their previous match. Paderborn certainly don’t have the quality necessary to stifle the likes of Hazard, Sancho and Brandt when they’re on a full swing.

And speaking of Paderborn, one thing they do have is spirit. They fought bravely and held out for a long time, but they were beaten fair and square in the end. Their focus wavered as the game went along, and Baumgart will certainly want to work with his players on keeping concentration and staying sharp for the full 90 minutes.

This result did very little for Dortmund’s title challenge, though it has probably kept their hopes flickering. On the other hand, Paderborn are a step closer to playing in the 2nd Bundesliga next season.

Match Report

SC PADERBORN: Zingerle 7.5, Strohdiek 6, Hunemeier 6, Drager 7, Collins 7, Schonlau 6, Vasiliadis 4, Srbeny 5 (65 Zolinski 5), Antwi-Adjej 6.5, Holtmann 7, Mamba 5.5 (65′ Michel 5).

BORUSSIA DORTMUND: Burki 6, Hummels 7.5, Akanji 6.5, Piszczek 7.5, Delaney 7 (68′ Witsel 7), Can 7, Hakimi 7.5, Guerreiro 7, Brandt 7.5, Sancho 7.5, Hazard 7.5.

GOALS: Hazard 54′, Sancho 57′, 74′, 90′, Hunemeier (P) 72′, Hakimi 85′, Schmelzer 89′.

YELLOW CARDS: Sancho 58′, Collins 60′, Can 71′, Hummels 76′, Drager 82′.

REFEREE: Daniel Siebert.

DATE & VENUE: May 31, 2020, Benteler-Arena, Paderborn.

Manchester United close to Ighalo extension

Manchester United are said to be close to agreeing a loan extension with Shanghai Shenhua for forward Odion Ighalo, according to a recent report from Sky Sports.

For a while it seemed as if Ighalo was going to be heading back to China with both parties unable to come to an agreement. Now, though, the extension seems to be on the cards as talks continue – with some suggesting that it can be concluded before the end of the day.

The extension would run until the end of January, ensuring that Ighalo will be able to play a leading role for United once the Premier League gets back underway. Despite some eyebrows initially being raised when he was first brought into the fold at Old Trafford, Ighalo has been able to prove a lot of people wrong by thriving as one of their leading men in the last few months prior to the lockdown.

Juventus to sacrifice Rabiot for Pogba?

Juventus are willing to put forward Adrien Rabiot as part of a potential swap deal with Manchester United for Paul Pogba, Calciomercato reports.

One week it seems as if Juve’s pursuit of Pogba is dead in the water, and then the next, things are back on – such is the nature of a move that could be huge for both clubs. Alas, in order to get the deal over the finish line, the Old Lady may have to sacrifice someone that was initially hoped to be a real midfield maestro for them.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to put forward a brand new midfield partnership, with Bruno Fernandes making up one half of it. Rabiot could be used in negotiations, but beyond that, he could make a really strong new career for himself in Manchester.

Whether or not that comes to fruition depends entirely on what Juventus are looking to accomplish here.

Bayern Munich 5-0 Fortuna Dusseldorf: Champions dominate

The expectation coming into the resumption of the German Bundesliga was that Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund would tussle it out for the title between now and the end of the season. While fans and pundits were well within their rights to assume that would be the case, Bayern have reiterated their status as the clear favourites to win the title once again after storming to a 5-0 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf this weekend.

Forcing the issue

Any hope that Dusseldorf fans had regarding their ability to frustrate Bayern was extinguished pretty quickly and efficiently, with the reigning champions walking all over them from the word go. It was a Mathias Jorgensen own goal that managed to open the scoring for them, with Benjamin Pavard and Robert Lewandowski making it 3-0 before the half time whistle had even blown.

Dortmund fans who had been hoping that their rivals would slip up were in for a rude awakening, and after the break, Bayern didn’t take their foot off of the gas. Lewandowski scored his second goal of the game to equal his most prolific season ever, and with five league games still left to play, he’ll almost certainly be adding to that total sooner rather than later.

One step closer

The punishing performance was completed when Alphonso Davies made it five, confirming what many fans already knew: it’s going to take one hell of an effort to stop this Bayern team from making it eight straight titles, with many of the club’s fans now turning their attention towards the potential restart of the UEFA Champions League.

Still, while it may seem fairly positive for Bayern right now, it’s not like they don’t have difficult showdowns ahead of them. They are set to travel to take on Bayer Leverkusen next weekend, and then following that, they’ll be hosting Borussia Monchengladbach – with both teams proving in the past that they can mix it up with the big boys. Fortuna Dusseldorf, on the other hand, will now regroup and prepare for back to back home games against Hoffenheim and Borussia Dortmund.

Match Report

Bayern Munich: Neuer (7), Davies (9), Hernandez (7), Alaba (7), Pavard (8.5), Goretzka (7.5), Kimmich (8), Gnabry (8), Muller (7.5), Coman (7.5), Lewandowski (9.5), Odriozola (6.5), Zirkzee (6), Meier (6), Cuisance (6.5), Perisic (6)

Fortuna Dusseldorf: Kastenmeier (6), Zimmermann (6), Jorgensen (5), Hoffmann (6.5), Gießelmann (5.5), Bodzek (6.5), Skrzybski (6), Morales (5.5), Stöger (5.5), Thommy (6), Karaman (6), Berisha (6), Sobottka (6), Zimmer (6), Pledl (6), Suttner (6)

Referee: Robert Hartmann

Goals: Jorgensen OG, Pavard, Lewandowski x2, Davies

Yellow Cards: Suttner, Karaman

Red Cards: N/A

Newcastle United Would Be A Great Destination For Philippe Coutinho

Newcastle United might be quite busy during the upcoming transfer period. Despite the uncertainty surrounding the Premier League, all signs point toward The Magpies being major players in the market if their proposed takeover goes through.

The St. James’ Park outfit should have a lot of money to spend and bolster the first-team squad accordingly. One of the names being mentioned as a potential transfer target is the one of Philippe Coutinho, who is currently on loan at Bayern Munich from FC Barcelona. The Brazil international represents the high-profile player The Magpies want to sign, in order to give club a boost both on and off the pitch.

There is absolutely no doubt that Coutinho would be a great addition for Newcastle. Able to play all over the attacking third, the Brazilian could form a great duo with Miguel Almiron in the attacking midfield. Plus, he has enough talent to takeover the team and carry it when things get tough. He only needs more confidence, and he could find that by returning to England.

Let’s remember Coutinho lived his best years playing for Liverpool. As a Red, the Brazil international went from a talented young player to a global superstar. His performances for the Anfield side led him to sign for Barcelona, but things did not work out for him at the Camp Nou.

His tenure at Bayern Munich has been highlighted by inconsistencies and injuries. In fact, Coutinho hasn’t played for Die Roten since the Bundesliga resumed in mid-May. The Bundesliga giants already announced they won’t sign Coutinho on a permanent basis. Therefore, it wouldn’t be a surprise if he doesn’t play for the team anymore. Barca do not want him, either. Newcastle, however, would be more than happy to offer him an escape route.

Tottenham and Arsenal have also enquired for Coutinho in recent days. However, joining Newcastle would be the best scenario for him. The Brazilian wants to re-gain his confidence while becoming the undisputed leader of a team. With that in mind, St James’ Park is the place for him. Coutinho is the kind of player that needs to feel support in order to play at his best. There is no question he would find that under the tutelage of Rafa Benitez.

Barca have the final word in this situation, and Newcastle must see their takeover completed before making any real approach for the Brazilian. If all things fall into place, however, then Coutinho would be wise to join The Magpies. He could rediscover his best form there.

Brazil’s Horror Defeat To Germany At the 2014 World Cup Left Big Scars (Video)

Going into the World Cup on their home soil in 2014, Brazil were widely considered the main favorite for the planet’s biggest trophy. But having edged past Chile on penalties in the round of 14 and narrowly beaten Colombia in the quarterfinals, they were completely destroyed by eventual winners Germany one step before the final.

Goals from Thomas Muller, Miroslav Klose, Toni Kroos (2), Sami Khedira and Andre Schurrle (2), left some huge scars across the Brazil team that will likely never heal fully.

Here are a few words on the matter from Thiago Silva, Neymar and Fernandinho.

BATE Borisov 21/20 to beat Isloch to nil in Sunday’s Belarusian Premier League matchup

Competition: Belarusian Premier League

Market: BATE Borisov win to nil

Odds: 21/20 @ Bet 365

Handed a golden opportunity to extend on what has been a scintillating run of form, a high-flying BATE Borisov will host away day strugglers Isloch on Sunday afternoon.

Starting with the hosts, lifting the Belarusian Cup thanks to what was a dramatic extra-time winner against defending champions Dinamo Brest last week, the mood in BATE’s camp couldn’t be any higher. Holding a game in hand and still opening the weekend top of the Premier League, the Yellows have won their last seven matches across all competitions and the Europa League outfit have continued to gain a long list of admirers for their performances at the back, particularly at the Borisov Arena. With their sights set on landing a 16th domestic crown this season, Kirill Alshevsky’s men once again recorded a clean sheet in last weekend’s final and even more impressive for BATE, Sunday’s hosts have conceded just a single goal on home soil in almost 500 minutes of action in Barysaw.

As for the visitors, putting in another worrying display last weekend and hit with a shock 2-1 defeat at home against Energetyk-BGU, the Whites find themselves in the midst of a real rut. Now hit with back-to-back Premier League defeats, Head Coach Vitaly Zhukovsky has also seen his side continue to show some rather glaring issues on the road. Including what was a 1-0 defeat against fellow strugglers and local rivals Dinamo Minsk earlier in the month, Isloch have lost three of their last four outings and are yet to record a single away victory since opening the new campaign. In fact, losing each of their last three Premier League matches away from the Stadyen Haradski, Isloch have landed just a sole away goal so far this year.

Bet: BATE Borisov 21/20 to beat Isloch to nil in Sunday’s Belarusian Premier League matchup @ Bet 365

Barcelona and Real remain keen on Napoli’s Ruiz

Barcelona and Real Madrid have both been linked with Napoli’s Fabian Ruiz, and according to Gazzetta dello Sport, both clubs remain interested in his services.

The two Spanish giants are currently looking for a new midfielder. Real have long been linked with Manchester United’s Paul Pogba, but that move seems unlikely in the current financial circumstances. On the other hand, the Catalans have been trying to wrap up a swap deal for Miralem Pjanic of Juventus, but Arthur Melo’s reluctance to leave the Camp Nou seems to be a big obstacle at the moment.

Having played for Real Betis before moving to Napoli in 2018, Ruiz has significant experience in playing in the Spanish top-flight, and it is believed that both Real and Barcelona will do what they can to try and bring him back to his homeland.

However, the 24-year-old is under contract with the Serie A side until the summer of 2023, which could complicate matters for them.

Heidenheim 10/11 to beat Erzgebirge Aue in Sunday’s Bundesliga II battle

Competition: Bundesliga II

Market: Heidenheim win

Odds: 10/11 @ Bet 365

Knowing that three points on Sunday lunchtime could catapult them into the top-three, Heidenheim will welcome Erzgebirge Aue to the Voith-Arena on Sunday lunchtime.

Starting with the hosts, while Heidenheim might have been disappointed to have only collected a point away at St. Pauli last time out, Frank Schmidt’s men will certainly be glad to make a return to the Voith-Arena on Sunday. Sat just a single point adrift of finding a route back into the promotion spots, the Reds have a growing reputation for their stunning record on home soil. Including landing a 1-0 victory against Wehen Wiesbaden last weekend, they are unbeaten at home since October 6th, a glittering nine-match run. With that run also highlighted by a thumping 3-1 victory over Karlsruher SC prior to the enforced break, there is no doubt that Sunday’s home specialists should be looking to extend on their top-three charge this weekend.

As for the visitors, putting in another worrying performance last weekend and hit with a 3-1 drumming at home against Darmstadt, Erzgebirge Aue find themselves stuck in Bundesliga II limbo. Recording just a pair of second-tier victories since opening 2020, there is no doubt that Head Coach Dirk Schuster will have growing concerns over their side’s continued issues on the road. Hit with a 3-0 drumming against Stuttgart prior to the enforced break, the Purples have remarkably failed to land a single Bundesliga II win away from the Erzgebirgsstadion all season. Even more worrying for Erzgebirge Aue, they also hold a woeful record against the hosts. Losing each of their last three meetings against Heidenheim, including a 1-0 defeat earlier in the season, we’re backing a similar outcome at the Voith-Arena on Sunday lunchtime.

Bet: Heidenheim 10/11 to beat Erzgebirge Aue in Sunday’s Bundesliga II battle @ Bet 365

Milan interested in Burnley’s Hendrick

AC Milan are interested in signing Jeff Hendrick from Burnley, according to Sky Sports.

The midfielder will be out of contract this summer, and that is probably one of the reasons the seven-time European champions are mulling over a move for his services in the present financial climate, despite the report suggesting their interest dates further back than that.

Hendrick arrived to Turf Moor from Derby County four years ago, for a reported fee of €11 million. Since then, he’s gone on to play a total of 139 games for Sean Dyche’s team. This season he played 27 times on all fronts, scoring three goals and assisting his teammates twice. The 28-year-old is rather versatile in the middle of the park, capable of playing any midfield role. He has also racked up 54 appearances for the Republic of Ireland.

Although some talks have been held, no extension on his current deal with the Clarets has been agreed as of yet, and he is already completely free to arrange a transfer abroad, if he wants.