Bundesliga: Marco Reus leaves it late to send Borussia Dortmund top | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 16.03.2019
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Bundesliga: Marco Reus leaves it late to send Borussia Dortmund top

Even without Axel Witsel, Mario Götze and Paco Alcacer, Borussia Dortmund found something from somewhere to seal an epic comeback that sends them top in the tightest of title races. Marco Reus proved the hero again.

Hertha Berlin 2-3 Borussia Dortmund
(Kalou 4', 35' pen. - Delaney 14', Zagadou 47', Reus 90+2')

Considering Dortmund knew they were in title fight, they started surprisingly slowly - and paid the price. Roman Bürki spilled a long-range shot, bringing the ball back into play, and Salomon Kalou was on hand to poke home. Hertha Berlin outplayed Dortmund in the opening 10 minutes.

But even without Axel Witsel, Paco Alcacer and Mario Götze, Dortmund dragged themselves back into the game. Thomas Delaney picked up the ball in his own half and just kept running. With an option to his right, Delaney instead went for goal instead and after a wicked deflection from Karim Rekik, Dortmund were level.

Dortmund had their chances. Jacob Bruun Larsen tested Rune Jarstein, Manuel Akanji took a header away from the better-placed Delaney. But Dortmund wobbled, as they have and Hertha found themselves ahead again when Kalou converted from the spot. The handball against Julian Weigl was perhaps harsh, given it looked like the midfielder was protecting his face from being hit rather than extending his body, but the decision was made and Dortmund were down.

Fußball Bundesliga Hertha BSC- Borussia Dortmund (Getty Images/AFP/T. Schwarz)

Dan-Axel Zagadou heads Dortmund back level

Dortmund find a comeback, and get a bit of luck

Jadon Sancho kept causing problems, but couldn't find an equalizer. After the restart though, Dortmund burst out of the blocks and Sancho delivered a perfect corner that Dan-Axel Zagadou headed into the far corner. Lucien Favre's side burst into life and suddenly threw everything at Hertha.

Pal Dardai's team responded, and were denied a third lead when Marko Grujic's curler clattered off the post. Both sides pushed forward, delivering attacking situation after situation. Hertha wanted a penalty after a push on Ondrej Duda, but nothing was given. Instead, Dortmund came again and Sancho found himself one-on-one with Jarstein, but got it all wrong and sent it wide.

Sancho continued to probe away and Christian Pulisic missed a glorious chance as Dortmund sought a winner in a game where the tempo just did not let up. BVB kept probing, but Hertha kept throwing their bodies in the way. With just over five minutes to go, Jordan Torunarigha picked up a second yellow, leaving the home side with 10 men. Delaney went for glory, but his drive hit the bar. 

On Dardai's birthday, it was Dortmund who spoiled the party. One neat move by Sancho got him some space, he found Marco Reus in the box and one superb touch later, Dortmund were ahead and the away end was jubilant. Berlin's frustration exploded, and sub Vedad Ibisevic was sent off for throwing the ball at Roman Bürki's head. It mattered not. Dortmund were winners, and the meaning of the victory was clear to see the moment the final whistle was blown.

Fußball Bundesliga Hertha BSC- Borussia Dortmund (picture-alliance/dpa/S. Stache)

Roman Bürki's error gave Hertha Berlin a dream start

As it happened:

FULL TIME: That's it. What a game. And how big could that Marco Reus goal turn out to be at the end of the season. Our match report will be along here any minute.

90+5 - RED CARD A little more late drama involving, perhaps unsurprisingly, Ibisevic. As Roman Bürki was bending down to place a free kick, Ibisevic hurled a second ball at the Dortmund keeper which struck him in the head. The referee didn't see it but the VAR did and Hertha are down to nine. 

90+3 - They've done it! Sancho stands up his man, finds half a yard and shovels it in to Reus. He opens his body and slots it low to Jarstein's left and in to the corner. A captain's goal, and a deserved one based on Dortmund's second half display.

90+2 GOAL! Hertha Berlin 2 - 3 Borussia Dortmund (Reus)

90+1 - Hakimi flies down the right and cuts the ball back, but it's behind his teammates. There will be four minutes of injury time.

89' - Hertha make a change to try and cling on to this point. Lustenberger comes on for Duda. Moments earlier Reus thought he was through but was flagged offside. Replays suggested he wasn't.

87' - WOODWORK! Delaney rattles the bar. The Danish midfielder connected sweetly from 25 yards with his left foot, Jarstein was beaten but it struck the bar and fell safely behind.

85' - RED CARD! Torunarigha, who was perhaps fortunate not to be sent off eight minutes ago, pulls back Pulisic as he moves towards goal and gets a second yellow. 

83' - Weigl robs Grujic and the ball falls to Pulisic. But he overdoes it and allows Stark to make an excellent tackle.

79' - CHANCE! Sancho and Pulisic have efforts blocked and the ball then falls to Sancho. He cuts it back to Hakimi but Jarstein pushes it round the post. This is becoming a familiar story with Dortmund.

77' - Torunarigha goes in the book for a pretty bad tackle on Sancho, who is also booked for complaning. Hertha make a double chance, Leckie and Ibisevic for Kalou and Selke. Dortmund, who brought on Guerreiro for Bruun Larsen a minute ago now replace Wolf with Hakimi.

75' CHANCE! Pulisic again. Wolf gets away down the right and cuts the ball back. The American s steaming in and, with the keeper taken out of the game, should just stroke home. But he scuffs it wide, admitedly under some pressure from Lazaro. Brunn Larsen then scrambles it in but is offside.

74' - Another fairly tepid effort from Pulisic is easily dealt with by Jarstein.

71' - Bruun Larsen finds Pulisic in the box with a lovely little pass. The ball runs past the American, who retrieves it and hits a shot on the turn. But he doesn't strike it cleanly and it trickles wide.

70' - Mittelstadt whips in a cross from the left that almost sneaks in the front post. But Bürki is wise to it.

68' - Sancho bursts clear from a Hertha corner, tries to exchange passes with Reus and is brought down. He's been much improved this half.

66' - The camera cuts to Pal Dardai and the Hertha coach looks, understandably, furious. The tension is rising and Mittelstädt does well to read the game and end a promising Dortmund move with an interception.

63' - Looking at it again, that was a fairly clear penalty. Diallo came from behind Duda and got none of the ball.

59' - Duda wants a penalty here. The Hertha man was clean through and went down under challenge from Diallo. That could easily have been given. Then, at the other end, Sancho is one-on-one with the keeper but puts his effort wide. There are more goals to come here, surely.

57' - WOODWORK! This is a great counter by Hertha. Duda feeds Kalou, who flicks a ball inside to Grujic. The Liverpool loanee stands up Wolf and Akanji and curls one on to the post. 

54' - CHANCE Sancho, played in beautifully by Reus, pokes a ball to Brunn Larsen just inside the box. His shot is decent but Jarstein palms it away low to his right.

53' - Stark is booked for a cynical foul on Reus.

52' - Hertha's turn now as Mittestädt motors down the left. He puts the ball low between the keeper and defenders but no-one can get anything on it. 

50' - CHANCE Sancho and Pulisic switched wings  at the break and it's had a huge impact and the Englishman almost gave BVB the lead. Sancho got on the end of a low cross from Marco Reus but his shot took a slight deflection that took it just wide.

48' - Great start to the half from Dortmund. Pulisic's shot won a corner and from that Zagadou leapt highest to bury a header. 

47' - GOAL! Hertha Berlin 2 - 2 Borussia Dortmund (Zagadou)

46' - We're back underway.

HALF TIME: Bayern fans will be rubbing their hands. Mistakes from Roman Bürki and Julian Weigl have helped Hertha to their lead but the hosts have matched their visitors throughout. Dortmund have had their moments but not enough of them.

44' - Dortmund pressing on for an equalizer before the interval but two attacks break down after poor final balls.

42' - CHANCE This is better from Sancho who cuts in from the left and tries to curl one in to the far corner. Jarstein does well to push it clear.

41' - It's all pretty flat from Dortmund at the minute. Reus hasn't been in the game at all, neither has Pulisic and Sancho has been erratic. Big team talk coming up for Lucien Favre you feel.

37' - Sancho drives in to the box from the left but Stark keeps pace with the Englishman and timed his tackle perfectly.

35' - Kalou has two, as he did in the reverse fixture. Hertha won the penalty when Weigl lifted his arm to cover his face as he went to block Duda's cross. A pretty clear handball and Dortmund have it all to do again.

35' - PENALTY TO HERTHA BERLIN

33' - CHANCE Akanji gets a free header from Sancho's corner but times his jump poorly and sends it wide. Got to hit the target there.

31' - Bruun Larsen has another pop from range but it's miles over the bar.

29' - Nice move from Hertha, as Stark plays in Lazaro down the right. But he's a little indecisive and the pull back is poor. Hertha are bothering Dortmund down that side.

26' - This one is quite open, and quite even. It feels like there'll be more goals.

22' - CHANCE Reus slips Bruun Larsen in the channel between the left back and center back. He's through but doesn't quite have the pace to get away and has to hit from a wider angle than he would've liked. The connection isn't great and Jarstein saves with his legs.

21' - Sancho is struggling a bit today and gives the ball away needlessly, not for the first time. Hertha's break is stopped when Zagadou trips Kalou on the halfway line and goes in to the book. 

19' - Reus nearly robs the dawdling Rekik on the edgeg of his own box but the Hertha man gets away with that one. Dortmund starting to impose themselves a bit now.

17' - That goal seems to have been awarded to Delaney. I think that's generous but so be it.

14' - That was very, very fortunate. Credit to Thomas Delaney, who won the ball in midfield and drove through the center of the pitch. But his shot was weak and looked to be going wide, but it struck Rekik's leg and looped agonizingly over Jarstein.

14' GOAL! Hertha Berlin 1 - 1 Borussia Dortmund (Rekik og)

13' - Bruun Larsen lashes one from just outside the box. It's moving in the air but Jarstein tips it behind with a strong hand. Dortmund waste the corner.

10' - Dortmund get a corner and go short to Sancho but his delivery is dreadful.

9' - The home side have settled much better here, and Selke almost gets in behind, but Akanji snuffs out the danger.

7' - Dortmund have their first real spell of possession but it's all a little ponderous and eventually Weigl gives it away.

4' - This is pretty poor from Roman Bürki. Mittelstädt's drive from 25 yards is decent and the BVB keeper goes down to his right to make the save but pushes it back in to the box rather than round the post. Kalou is first to react and taps home.

4' GOAL - Hertha Berlin 1 - 0 Borussia Dortmund (Kalou)

3' - Lazaro and Kalou combine smartly down the right before the former lays it off to Grujic. His shot is on target but lacks power and Bürki gatehrs comfortably.

1' - Here we go. Saloman Kalou rolls the ball back and we're underway.

18:25 - There's bound to be a fair few eyes on Niklas Stark, with the Hertha center back handed a Germany call up this week as Joachim Löw prepares for a future without Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng.

18:21 - With Bayern not playinng until tomorrow, and having exited the Champions League in midweek, thihs is a big chance for Dortmund to turn the pressure back on the champions. They've struggled to be clinical of late, something they need to change quickly if they're to break Bayern's dominance.

18:15 - Hello, and welcome to Saturday's late game. Dortmund have let their title lead slip away over the past few weeks but have a chance to regain it, for one day at least, this evening. 

These sides drew 2-2 in Dortmund amid ugly scenes off the pitch.While Hertha are very much a midtable outfit they are tough to beat at the Olympiastadion and in Ondrej Duda and Davie Selke in particular, have a cutting edge. 

Dortmund are without injured duo Mario Götze and Paco Alcacer so it looks as if Jacob Bruun Larsen, or perhaps Marco Reus, will lead the line. Here are the teams.

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