Bundesliga Week 5: The Revierderby

Borussia Dortmund hosted Schalke 04 in the 97th edition of the Bundesliga era Ruhr Derby best known as the Revierderby. The two teams are heading in the opposite direction and are on the opposite sides of the table. Borussia feature stars in Jadon Sancho and Erling Haaland but Schalke sit in the relegation spots early on in the 2020-2021 season. The visitors were still missing Ozan Kabak who is still serving a long suspension for alleged spitting on Werder’s Ludwig Augustinsson last month. The almost empty Signal Iduna Park made for an almost surreal atmosphere.

The game started out somewhat evenly but Dortmund took control slowly and Schalke’s attempted pressing didn’t amount to much as they were pinned in their area for long periods. When Dortmund did find space they shot as often as they could. Mahmoud Dahoud from a long range shot and Giovanni Reyna – header from a Thomas Meunier cross – came closest to opening the score.

The second half reinforced the first half pattern with Dortmund with a good amount of the ball and 10 minutes into it the opening goal arrived. A freekick was headed to an almost own goal, in the ensuing corner the ball was worked around and after a few passes Manuel Akanji shot low into the far corner. Soon after the lead was doubled when a counter was well played by Haaland. A give and go with Sancho found its way back to Haaland and he sped and powered through the opposing defense and beat Frederik Roennow. Schalke’s 3-5-2/5-3-2 unable to stop the Norwegian and Dortmund. Another corner resulted in the third goal. The energetic Raphael Guerreiro’s corner was met with Mats Hummels’ strong header and it was 3-0 for the hosts. The rest of the game had an aura of an eventless inevitability.

A team boasting Mahmoud Dahoud, Giovanni Reyna, Guerreiro and Haaland with the likes of Marco Reus and Axel Witsel off the bench proves too strong for the opposition once again.

Manuel Bahm and Schalke are now winless in 21 with zero shots on goal in this one. Dortmund will battle it out with Bayern and Leipzig for the Bundesliga title although the eventual winner is not a difficult guess.