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Borussia Dortmund 5 Cologne 0: Aubameyang, Philipp bag braces as BVB return to the top

Borussia Dortmund plundered three goals in 10 second-half minutes to return to the Bundesliga summit with a 5-0 thrashing of Cologne on Sunday.

Leading 2-0 at the break, the hosts turned on the style in a scintillating spell after the interval as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Maximilian Philipp both bagged braces – the latter claiming his first goals for the club.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos also got in on the scoring fun to extend the hosts’ unbeaten start to their league campaign.

On the back of their Europa League drama away to Arsenal on Thursday, bottom-placed Cologne posed few problems throughout the match and never recovered from Philipp’s second-minute opener.

Dortmund twice benefited from the intervention of the Video Assistant Referee, but it was Aubameyang’s quickfire double after the restart which turned the contest into a rout.

Andriy Yarmolenko also starred following his superb Champions League goal against Tottenham as Peter Bosz’s side recovered from that 3-1 loss to canter to victory and a fourth straight Bundesliga clean sheet.
Yarmolenko’s superb strike in midweek offered a glimpse of his talent and the Ukraine star needed just two minutes of his first league start to further underline his class, dribbling beyond his marker and whipping in a superb cross for Philipp to nod in the opener.

An unmarked Aubameyang should have doubled the advantage 15 minutes later when Gonzalo Castro touched a deft knock-down into his path, but Timo Horn did well to tip the miscued effort around the post.

Yarmolenko continued to cause problems throughout the first half as Philipp, Lukasz Piszczek and Nuri Sahin all tried their luck around the half-hour mark.

The winger then directed a header wide from Piszczek’s cross as Dortmund looked to take complete control before the break, although their momentum momentarily stalled when Sokratis required treatment.

However, the Greece defender recovered to poke his side into a 2-0 lead on the stroke of half-time, punishing Horn for spilling a corner as the referee called on the VAR to reverse his initial decision of handball.

Aubameyang’s struggles in front of goal continued immediately after the restart when he broke through one-on-one, only to sidefoot his finish narrowly wide of the far post.

The speedy forward was instead gifted the chance to open his account from the penalty spot when the VAR spotted a handball in the area by Cologne defender Lukas Klunter.
After dispatching the spot-kick into the bottom-left corner, Aubameyang made it two in two minutes as he tucked away Piszczek’s smart low cross for a sudden 4-0 lead.

And it truly became a rout when Philipp capped the stunning 10-minute burst by deftly adding his second of the match from Mahmoud Dahoud’s incisive pass.

Roman Burki was called on to make a rare save from Klunter in the closing stages, preserving his fourth league shut-out as Dortmund sounded a significant warning to their title rivals.

Key Opta stats:

– For the first time Cologne have lost their first four games of a Bundesliga season. Zero points and a minus 11 goal difference is the second worst start in Bundesliga history after four games. Only Karlsruhe had a worse start, in 1963-64 with no points and -13 goals.
– Borussia Dortmund extended their club record run to 40 unbeaten home matches in the Bundesliga (W33, D7). Their last home loss came in April 2015 against Bayern Munich (0-1).
– Cologne suffered their heaviest defeat under manager Peter Stoger. Their last three defeats by five goals came against Dortmund.

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Freiburg 0 Borussia Dortmund 0: Bosz´s men fail to make most of dominance against 10 men

Borussia Dortmund failed to make the most of their numerical advantage as they were held to a 0-0 Bundesliga draw by a Freiburg side that played over an hour with 10 men.

Peter Bosz’s men came into the match in good form after winning their first two league outings, but they came unstuck on Saturday as they failed to break down their hosts’ resistance despite having more than 80 per cent of the possession after seeing Yoric Ravet sent off.

Freiburg’s early defensive solidity looked at threat when debutant Ravet was dismissed for a nasty tackle on Marcel Schmelzer in the 27th minute, a punishment that was upgraded by the use of VAR following the initial showing of a caution.

For all their dominance and numerical advantage, however, Dortmund struggled to craft clear-cut chances for the remainder of what ultimately proved to be a frustrating first half.

Opportunities did begin to come their way after half-time and Dortmund were utterly in control, keeping Freiburg penned into their own area for long periods.

But Alexander Schwolow in the Freiburg goal dealt well with Dortmund’s efforts and eventually, after a tense final period, the hosts held on to a commendable point.

Dortmund took charge right from the start, but that attack-minded approach left them open at the back on occasion and Freiburg should have capitalised early on.

The hosts caught Dortmund on the break and Tim Kleindienst found himself through on goal, before shooting straight at the relieved Roman Burki.

Dortmund’s defensive stability was not helped by Marc Bartra’s exit with an innocuous-looking injury after 18 minutes.

But Freiburg’s chances suffered a severe blow just before the half-hour mark as Ravet caught Schmelzer with a crude studs-first challenge which forced the full-back off on a stretcher and the referee – with the help of his video assistant – produced a red card, changing his mind after originally showing yellow.

Dortmund’s dominance only increased as a result, though Schwolow was only tested once, pushing away Nuri Sahin’s 30-yard drive just before the break.

The visitors almost ended the Freiburg resistance two minutes after the interval, as Mario Gotze lofted a precise pass into the area for Christian Pulisic, whose left-footed effort drew a fine save from Schwolow.

The American then turned provider shortly after, dazzling on the right flank with some clever footwork before crossing to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who headed over.

Dortmund thought they had finally broken through Freiburg’s defence with 10 minutes to play, but Aubameyang found the net after referee Benjamin Cortus had stopped play for a foul.

And Freiburg hearts were in mouths again shortly after, as Lukasz Piszczek headed agonisingly wide in what proved to be the visitors’ final chance on a frustrating day.

Key Opta stats:

– This was the first 0-0 draw between Freiburg and Borussia Dortmund in their 35th Bundesliga encounter.
– Dortmund have not lost any of their last 12 games in all competitions (eight wins, four draws) – their longest unbeaten run since January-April 2016 (18 games).
– Dortmund kept a clean sheet in their first three games of a Bundesliga season for only the second time – in 2001-02 they won the championship at the end of the season.
– Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang failed to score in a competitive game for Dortmund for the first time since April 29 (0-0 vs Cologne). He had scored in eight consecutive games.