Borussia Dortmund started their title defense with a 2-1 win Friday night. Thomas Schaaf brought his retooled Werder Bremen side to the Westfalenstadion in Dortmund and showed that they're going to be better than many thought this season, but they just weren't good enough to defeat the champions in their house on opening night.
BVB came out flying in the opening minutes of the match. Their passing was crisp and precise, and it seemed they were going to break down the Bremen defense at any moment. That moment came in the 11th minute when Jakub Blaszczykowski threaded a pass through the defense and Reus scored to make it 1-0. The shot from Reus was very impressive as he was running across the face of goal to the right and had the presence of mind to shoot the ball across his body in the direction that he came. Bremen goalkeeper Sebastian Mielitz stood no chance as the ball rolled past him and tucked into the far post.
Bremen's attack seemed to struggle to put together many passes aside from Aaron Hunt. The midfielder was consistently finding Eljero Elia on the left wing. The former Hamburg man was causing problems for BVB right back Oliver Kirch who was starting in place of an injured Lukasz Piszczek. In the 18th minute, Elia should have scored the equalizer when Hunt played him in and Elia was one on one with Roman Weidenfeller. Elia put his shot on target, but it was right at Weidenfeller for an easy save.
The visitors continued to press forward and Marko Arnautovic saw his shot slam off the post. They were, however, caught out by BVB's counter often for the remainder of the half. Bremen left back Aleksandar Ignjovski had a rough outing in the first half. He was caught horribly out of position on Reus' goal, and he drew a yellow card for a cynical foul just outside of his own penalty area after being beaten by Reus. The following free kick was right at Mielitz. The play balanced out as the half concluded, and Bremen considered themselves unlucky to not have found a goal in the half.
Both teams came out fairly cautious in the early second half in an attempt to not concede an early goal. Ilkay Gündogan seemed to be everywhere in the BVB midfield until he was subbed out after 70 minutes. His link up play between the back line and the front four was solid today, and he started many of the BVB attacks with a great pass opening up play.
Bremen began to press more and more for the equalizer as the second half moved forward. They earned a corner in the 75th minute and finally found the goal. Arnautovic played in a cross and right back Theodor Gebre Selassie lept over everyone and headed it past Weidenfeller to make it 1-1. The goal was deserved for Bremen as they really came to life as the half wore on, and it seemed like it would only be a matter of time before they grabbed the goal.
Jürgen Klopp wasted no time making a substitution bringing on Mario Götze for Kevin Großkreutz who was fairly non-existent in this match for BVB. Götze is still recovering to full fitness, but it didn't take him long to prove why he's a starter in this side. Götze received a pass from Robert Lewandowski and beat Mielitz to re-establish the BVB lead in the 81st minute. The hosts would spend the rest of the match peppering the Bremen goal with shots for the remaining few minutes.