Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Match Report

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Match Report

Manuel Veth –

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg should have ended with a famous win for the Breisgau Brasilianer, but with the last shot of the match, Jeremy Toljan secured a point for BVB.

  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang controversy continues.
  • Nils Petersen scores twice.
  • Jeremy Toljan rescues a point for Dortmund.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg 

Goals: 1-0 (Shinji Kagawa, 10′), 1-1 (Nils Petersen, 20′), 1-2 (Petersen, 68′) 2-2 (Jeremy Toljan, 90′)

Everything was in the shadow of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s potential transfer to Arsenal. Back in the line-up, the deal, for now, seems to be on hold and with Dortmund needing the goals not playing the forward would have been irresponsible by head coach Peter Stöger. Although judging by the early goings, they did not need him as Dortmund were pressing hard and in the 10th minute, Shinji Kagawa scored with a fantastic volley after a scramble in the penalty box. Dortmund absolutely dominated the match from there on pressing the Breisgau Brasilianer hard, Freiburg, however, played patiently looking for an opening, which arrived in the 20th minute after Lucas Höler managed to reach a ball just before it crossed the byline bringing the ball low in front of the net where Petersen was waiting to tap the high ball past BVB keeper Roman Bürki. The goal brought an instant silence to the SIGNAL IDUNA PARK, as the fans were almost shocked by the goal that seemingly arrived out of nowhere.

Aubameyang in the meantime was mostly invisible in the first half of the match. Instead, cheers and whistles accompanied the Gabonese striker whenever he touched the ball. It was clear that the fans were not happy with his transfer antics. With this in mind, it is perhaps not surprising that it took 30 minutes for Aubameyang to create his first chance – a header after a great cross by Gonzalo Castro that landed on the roof of Freiburg’s goal. Freiburg’s goal, in general, seemed to unease Dortmund with Bürki almost producing a howler of epic proportions in the 39th minute when he let a hard shot by Amir Abrashi slip through his arms and only a quick reaction by the Swiss keeper ensured that the ball did not cross the line after all. It was the last chance of note in the first half with both teams going into the second half on a deserved draw as the Yellow and Blacks may have bossed possession without effectively shutting down Freiburg, who seemed dangerous every time they went forward.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg - Shinji Kagawa opened the scoring in the first half. (Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Shinji Kagawa opened the scoring in the first half. (Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Second Half

Peter Stöger reacted to Dortmund’s lacklustre midfield display in the first half bringing on Mario Götze for Gonzalo Castro at halftime. With Götze in the line-up, Dortmund were able to combine more quickly through Freiburg’s midfield, but the midfield maestro also struggled to find a solution to crack open Freiburg’s defence, which had created a fortress around their penalty box defending with two four-man lines. Freiburg resorted to the sort of tactics that frustrated Dortmund on matchday 3 when they kept the Yellow and Blacks of the scoresheet entirely. But unlike matchday 3 Freiburg had a man more on the pitch and the Breisgau Brasilianer were dangerous every time they won the ball pouring forward threatening BVB’s defensive line.

It is one of the oldest football cliches but with Dortmund pressing without finding a way through it would only be a matter of time until Freiburg would score right? It was precisely what happened in the 68th minute after Nuri Sahin needlessly gave the ball away to Nils Petersen in midfield. The Freiburg forward only took a couple of touches spotting BVB keeper Bürki off the line he lopped the ball from 30 metres over the Swiss keeper to bring Freiburg ahead. Following the goal, it was more of the same by both sides. Dortmund bossed possession without the creative spark that helped them find a way through the sea of red players and Freiburg were waiting to hit Dortmund on the counter-attack once again. With Dortmund struggling to get the equaliser it appeared that Freiburg would get their first win in 17 years in Dortmund, but with the last chance of the match, Dortmund equalised with Jeremy Toljan scoring with a thundering shot from outside the box after Freiburg failed to clear the ball away cleanly. Freiburg seemed to have the three points all but wrapped up in the end, however, the draw was deserved.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Man of the Match

Nils Petersen scored twice to enhance Dortmund’s crisis. The German forward has now scored nine goals in the last eight games. The two goals produced also highlight the completeness in Petersen’s game, who is both a penalty box poacher, but also a visionary player, which was epitomised by his second goal where he scored with a wonderful lop from 30 metres out. With Joachim Löw in the stands do not be surprised if Petersen will get a chance to play for Germany at some point soon.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg - Nils Petersen (c.) is celebrating one of his two goals. (Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Nils Petersen (c.) is celebrating one of his two goals. (Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Talking Point

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s potential transfer to Arsenal overshadows everything at the moment in Dortmund. Michael Zorc told reporters before the game: “Either our demands will be fulfilled, only then will there be a transfer. Or they won’t be fulfilled, and Auba plays here until the summer. The Aubameyang family knows this and has accepted it.” With Dortmund needing goals now, however, BVB head coach Peter Stöger had no choice but field the Gabonese forward. Aubameyang, however, was then largely invisible throughout the match, which will not help his cause should the transfer fail and his re-integration into the squad become a necessity.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Match Stats

  • With his 29th goal in Bundesliga Nils Petersen has past Rodolfo Esteban Cardoso – only Papiss Demba Cisse (37) and Alexander Iashvili (29) have scored more often for Freiburg.
  • Petersen has scored nine goals in the last eight games.
  • Dortmund had 12 shots, but only four hit the target.

Borussia Dortmund vs SC Freiburg – Line-ups

Borussia Dortmund:

Formation: 4-3-3

Bürki – Piszczek, Sokratis, Toprak, Toljan – Kagawa, Sahin (Isak, 77′), Castro (Götze, 46′) – Pulisic (Yarmolenko, 66′), Aubameyang, Sancho

Coach: Peter Stöger

SC Freiburg:

Formation: 3-4-3

Gikiewicz – Kempf, Gulde, Söyüncü – Günter, Abrashi, Koch, Kübler – Haberer (Dräger, 84′), Petersen, Höler (Kleindienst, 81′)

Coach: Christian Streich

Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He also works as a freelance journalist and social media editor at 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 will be available in print soon. Originally from Munich, Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently is located in Victoria BC, Canada.  Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.