Dortmund overcome Atalanta with late goal

Borussia Dortmund needed another late goal to keep their Europa League dreams alive after a 1-1 draw with Atalanta saw them progress 4-3 on aggregate in the round of 32.

Atalanta 1 Borussia Dortmund 1
Toloi breaks deadlock early on
Cristante misses with close-range header
Schurrle denied by Berisha before half-time
Schmelzer equaliser sees BVB advance

Match Summary

Peter Stoger’s side struggled to break down Atalanta and found themselves trailing for much of the second-leg clash at the MAPEI Stadium after Rafael Toloi opened the scoring in the 11th minute.

However, they dashed Italian hopes late on when Marcel Schmelzer equalised seven minutes from time to take Dortmund into the last 16.

Full Report

The hosts made a bright start in the pouring rain as Marten de Roon ran onto Hans Hateboer’s lay-off from the right and lashed a shot over the crossbar from 18 yards out.

They continued to pressurise Dortmund and were rewarded on 11 minutes when Toloi poked the ball home at the back post after Roman Burki had failed to deal with a corner into the six-yard box.

Bryan Cristante should have at least tested Burki from a free-kick on the left 16 minutes later, but he steered a free header wide of the near post from seven yards out.

Dortmund weren’t having much luck in the final third, although Andre Schurrle threatened on 28 minutes with a left-footed shot from 19 yards out that flew over the bar. He then forced Etrit Berisha into a good save with a skidding effort from range four minutes later.

Gian Piero Gasperini’s men kept the visitors at bay for the remainder of the first half, but came under increasing pressure in the second half. Josip Ilicic had a sniff at goal in the 70th minute when he advanced into the area on the right and cut inside before shooting inches wide of the left post.

But the Bundesliga outfit started gaining the ascendancy and Michy Batshuayi drew a low save out of Berisha with a left-footed shot from inside the box, while Marco Reus flashed the ball wide of the far post from a tight angle on the right soon afterwards.

Berisha was called into action as he pulled off a smart save to deny Schurrle from Reus’ cut-back on the left, but the keeper was at fault for Dortmund’s equaliser in the 83rd minute. He spilled a tame shot from Reus and Schmelzer reacted quickest to score on the rebound.

It was a cruel blow for Atalanta after they had played so well in both legs, with BVB marching on despite being second best.