Manuel Veth –
Dortmund v Augsburg – August, 17 – Bundesliga, SIGNAL IDUNA Park
It was a furious start to the game at the SIGNAL IDUNA Park. Within one minute Augsburg’s Florian Niederlechner escaped Dortmund’s defence and put away a pass from Mads Pedersen from just six-yards out. Dortmund, however, were shocked for just a moment and Paco Alcacer benefited from a clumsy Tomas Koubek clearing attempt to score the equaliser in the 2nd minute. Dortmund then took control of proceedings, and it seemed only a matter of time for them to score the second goal in the first half, but Augsburg were excellent when it came to collapsing the defence closing down the scoring channels.
For Dortmund, that meant that they had to be patient. That patience paid off in the 51st minute. Once again Koubek spilt the beans when he let a low Axel Witsel cross slip through, the ball landed at Jadon Sanho’s feet, and the Englishman had no problem scoring from a few yards out. Koubek’s nightmare continued, in the 57th minute the keeper dropped a cross from the right allowing Marco Reus to score Dortmund’s third of the game. Then just three minutes Paco Alcacer added his second of the game with a shot from just inside the box. The game was very much wrapped up at this point but in the 82nd minute Julian Brandt, who came on in the second half, scored his first as Dortmund player to wrap up a fantastic 5-1 result.
Dortmund v Augsburg – Three Stars
Paco Alcacer (Borussia Dortmund)
Paco Alcacer had another field day against Augsburg. The Spaniard scored the early equaliser to get Dortmund back into the game and then added a stunning goal in the second half to make it 4-1. Paco Alcacer struggled at times last season with fitness, which put him on part-time duty for the majority of the games. This year, however, he is fit from the getgo, which is fantastic news for all Dortmund fans.
Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund)
The Englishman was once again excellent scoring one goal and one assist. Always on the move and excellent in one-v-one situations, Sancho highlighted why he has quickly become one of the most promising wide players in Europe. Those assets will be key if Dortmund want to have a serious title challenge this season.
Tomas Koubek (Augsburg)
Augsburg’s new goalkeeper Tomas Koubek had a Bundesliga debut to forget. The goalkeeper looked poor in Dortmund’s first three goals. Koubek pointed out in an interview leading up to the game that he likes to communicate with the players in front of him. With the Czech keeper only just having arrived from Stade Rennes the lack of communication may have played a role. But Koubek will have to quickly come to terms with the higher speed of the Bundesliga if he wants to remain a starter for Augsburg going forward.
Dortmund v Augsburg – GOALS: 0-1 (Niederlechner 1’) 1-1 (Paco Alcacer, 2’), 2-1 (Jadon Sancho, 51′), 3-1 (Marco Reus, 57′), 4-1 (Paco Alcacer, 60′), 5-1 (Julian Brandt, 82′)
A fantastic start to Borussia Dortmund’s title challenge, especially in the context that Bayern dropped two points against Hertha yesterday. Overall, the 5-1 victory reflected the strengths of either side on Saturday afternoon, but Dortmund once again conceded an unnecessary goal and against a better side may have struggled to get straight back into the game. Augsburg, in the meantime, are an early relegation candidate.
Dortmund v Augsburg – Lineups
Borussia Dortmund (4-3-3)
Hitz – Schulz, Hummels, Akanji, Piszczek (Hakimi, 68′) – Witsel, Weigl – T. Hazard (Brandt, 68′), Reus (Götze, 78′), Sancho – Paco Alcacer
Koubek – Pedersen, Suchy, Khedira, Teigl – Gruezo, D. Baier – Vargas, Gregortisch, Hahn (Richter, 60′) – Niederlechner
Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He also works as a freelance journalist and among others contributes to Forbes.com and Pro Soccer USA. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which is available HERE. Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently splits his time between Victoria, BC and Munich, Germany. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.