Borussia Dortmund – Bayern Munich: Dortmund Defined By Offensive Vigour, Defensive Flaws (3-1)
In German football, all roads lead through Munich, but few make it beyond. Of those capable, Dortmund were the most talented, but a worrying vulnerability in defence caused by injuries exposed them against Bayern Munich. Julian Nagelsmann marks the first trophy of what looks to be an illustrious coaching career, but in the knowledge that sweeping conclusions ought not to be drawn based on this one-off clash.
Tactical analysis and match report by Manasvin Andra.
Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich would not make anyone’s list of football’s most heated rivalries, but recent editions of the battle between the two sides have produced games of enormous quality. With Bayern nearly always having the talent advantage, it is left to Dortmund to scrounge enough attacking value to make its mark, and it is to the credit of the Black and Yellows that they show themselves capable of putting up a fight.
However, this edition promised something different – despite Jadon Sancho’s departure, Erling Haaland’s emergence as the premier striker of the new generation has lifted expectations surrounding the side. Toss in a talented coach in Marco Rose and a 5-2 shellacking of Eintracht Frankfurt on the opening day of the season and the DFL-Supercup had instant appeal, which was only solidified by the line-ups that were announced.
Dortmund trotted out a 4-4-2 diamond formation, with new goalkeeper Gregor Kobel being shielded by Felix Passlack, Axel Witsel, Manuel Akanji and Nico Shulz. Mahmoud Dahoud played at the base of the midfield, with Gio Reyna and Jude Bellingham alongside. Marco Reus was the tip of the diamond, supporting Erling Haaland and Youssoufa Moukoko.
Already, the pressure was on . . .