Scary 12 minutes and an unneccesary draw
After an unneccessary 1-1 against Fortuna Düsseldorf just a few days before the big match-up away at Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund left a big opportunity to cement the second place in the rankings. Scheisse 04 lost in Hamburg while Eintracht Frankfurt lost to Mainz 05, so BVB had the opportunity to go into the Bayern match with a lead of four points to rank 3 with a win over league newbie Düsseldorf. For the bigger time of the match, it looked like the black and yellows would take this chance. However, in the end, they wasted a good opportunity because it looked like several players were already saving energies for the Munich game. And with just 80 per cent, you cannot win against a fighting newbie. But even though not many supporters will like to look back at the match due to the obvious reasons, it will always be a match to remember because of the fan protest which took place all over Germany during the first twelve minutes and twelve seconds of the match.
Scaring 12 minutes
Because of a new safety concept the DFL (German Football League) wants to adopt at December twelfth, supporters of many Bundesliga clubs decided to show their rejection of the concept by stopping the support for the first twelve minutes and twelve seconds of the matches starting at day 14. Divided by colors but connected by ideas, the supporters of Borussia Dortmund and Fortuna Düsseldorf stood on the terraces in silence, creating an atmosphere no football supporter would like to see in the future. It was a very scaring and awkward feeling, knowing that normally the Südtribüne would go crazy starting with the whistle. You could only hear some voices talking on the stands, comparable to the atmosphere you have in a big mall or something like that. The commentators of the Bundesliga matches reacted in a nice way, explaining the reasons of the protest campaign and pointing out the big importance of having atmosphere in a football stadium. Wolff Fuss, who commentated the match between BVB and Fortuna on Pay-TV, said that the match got a whole different quality when the protest was over. Needless to say, the whole stadium exploded in the 13th minute and the Südtribüne as well as the supporters from Düsseldorf really created a great atmosphere. From the point of view of the campaign, the protest during this match was a clear success. The fans do not agree with the concept since it says that the amount of tickets supporters from the away team get could be halved and full body investigations could be made possible. Furthermore, the concept does not really claim that standing terraces should be kept in Germany. Therefore, the protest is very important for the whole fan culture in Germany and we could only hope that our voices – or in this case, our silence – will be heard.
Before the match
After this important topic has been discussed, let's focus on the match itself. Both sides had to deal with injuries before the match. While Dortmund missed Hummels, Gündogan and Götze, Düsseldorf missed their whole central defense. Soares, Langeneke, Levels, Malezas, Cha and Fink could not compete so that coach Norbert Meier had to be creative. Bodzek – normally forming the double six – moved back and formed the central defense alongside Juanan. For the black and yellows, Santana replaced Hummels and skipper Kehl was back in action after his injury, stepping in for Gündogan. Götze's place was taken by Kevin Großkreutz who played in the offensive line together with Reus and Kuba.
While the stadium was quiet, the match itself was not too fascinating and it looked like the 22 players needed to get used to this unusual atmosphere. Schmelzer was the first one who created something which looked like an opportunity with a long shot which missed the goal by some good meters after seven minutes. All in all, Borussia was in control of the match for the most parts of the entire 90 minutes, being in the lead of all important statistics. However, Düsseldorf did a very good job defending with a mixture of not leaving much space on the pitch as well as pressing very early. Therefore, not many chances could be seen and Lewandowski's header after a corner kick was one of the bigger opportunities even though goalkeeper Giefer had no problem saving that one (29th). But shortly before half time, Borussia increased the pressure on the defense of the red and whites. A nice combination saw Reus through but the youngster did not hit the ball right so that this shot was no problem for Giefer as well (39th). Two minutes earlier, Reus was beaten by Giefer when he tried to score from a sharp angle. Even though Reus was the central point of one of Borussia's most dangerous situations, the Düsseldorf match was not one of his best during this season. Like the rest of the team, the midfielder kind of missed some per cent of his normal effectiveness.
With BVB increasing the pressure, the Westfalenstadion saw a very beautiful combination two minutes before half time. Piszczek brought the ball into the penalty area from the right, Kuba's chest assisted Großkreutz who completed the one-two and the Pole hammered the ball into the net with a goal of the month-quality. The stadium exploded and presented the famous Westfalenstadion Roar. Borussia was ahead with an important goal before the whistle and it looked like it could be a very good evening in Dortmund.
The second half saw no big change in comparison to the first one. Fortuna defended, Borussia had problems creating chances, but some of them nearly doubled the score. For example, a cross by Kuba got longer and longer and nearly ended up in the net just three minutes after the break. However, Giefer made the save. The first chance of Düsseldorf followed when Ivan Paurevic (who played in black and yellow for eight years) got the ball after a free kick from the right but had problems gaining control over the leather and slightly missed the goal (51st). An even bigger chance for the equalizer followed after a counter attack when forward Robbie Kruse was through the Dortmund defensive line, curved around Weidenfeller, eventually assisted Reisinger whose shot at the empty goal only found his colleague Ilsö, deflecting the ball besides the goal (58th). Somehow it looked like slapstick and it was hard to believe that this big opportunity did not end in the 1-1. Seconds later, the same thought could be said for Kevin Großkreutz' shot from the penalty area after a good assist by Schmelzer. Großkreutz had all the time he needed but missed the goal. Just like Reus (and to be honest, most of the players in black and yellow), Kevin did not have his best evening. So it came like it had to come when a cross from the left side was brought into the penalty area, Weidenfeller for some reason decided to stay in the goal even though the ball was directed to the six-yard-box. Schmelzer's attempt to prohibit Reisinger from heading the ball into the net did not look good as well and we saw the equalizer (78th). The last ten minutes became intense. Borussia tried to regain the lead, supported by the Südtribüne, but once again, Großkreutz missed a huge opportunity in minute 82 when he appeared in front of the goal but missed it from around eight meters. This had to be the winner, Kevin! Düsseldorf then once again showed why several supporters have problems with sympathizing with the club. Paurevic – remember, the former Borussian – was sent off with his second booking after a foul against Piszczek but at least took two minutes to leave the pitch and after Kruse fouled a Dortmund player seconds later, the forward took the ball and went running with it to gain some more time. The last chance of the match saw a header by Piszczek from around three meters being saved by Giefer.
It was an unnecessary draw even though Düsseldorf did a good job defending and made it hard for Dortmund to get any chances. However, you need to gain three points against a newbie at home even though it is obvious that matches like this can happen over a season. It is important not to complain for too long. Just focus on the match in Munich on Saturday which is very important not only because Bayern could get away from Dortmund too much but because we need to get some points there to cement the second place in the rankings. Don't forget about the capability of this squad just because of one bad evening. Maybe Götze will be back in Munich and you can be sure that the team will be highly motivated to gain back the points they lost on Tuesday.
Borussia Dortmund: Weidenfeller - Piszczek, Subotic, Santana, Schmelzer - Kehl, Bender - Blaszczykowski, Reus, Großkreutz – Lewandowski
Subs: Leitner for Kehl (68th), Perisic for Reus (75th), Schieber for Blasczykowski (82nd)
Fortuna Düsseldorf: Giefer - Balogun, Bodzek, Juanan, van den Bergh - Paurevic, Lambertz - Ilsö, Reisinger, Bellinghausen – Kruse
Subs: Schahin for Ilsö (72nd), Fomitschow for Reisinger (90th)
Goals: 1-0 Kuba (43rd), 1-1 Reisinger (78th)
Bookings: Subotic, Kruse
Second Booking: Paurevic (87th)
Referee: Aytekin (Oberasbach)
Attendance: 80.100 (Westfalenstadion)