Malaga vs. Borussia Dortmund: Halftime score 0-0, Good goalkeeping keeps things scoreless at the break

Stuart Franklin

Borussia Dortmund did nearly everything but score in the first half against Malaga as the Spanish side survived the opening 45 minutes at La Rosaleda.

It was an open and entertaining first half between Borussia Dortmund and Malaga at the Rosaleda. Despite chances for both sides, the goalkeepers were on their games and the match remains scoreless at halftime.

Dortmund had the better of the ball in the opening ten minutes but it was Malaga who generated the best chance. In the 7th minute Javier Saviola sliced through the German defense with relative ease, before cutting inside of Ilkay Gündogan and sending his shot into the side netting. If Saviola had looked up, he would have seen two teammates making runs at the Dortmund goal. Decent shot attempt after a nice run but it could have been much better for Malaga.

The first excellent chance for Dortmund came in the 14th minute after Mario Götze got behind the defensive line (if he looked offside it's because he was, just barely) and created a one-on-one chance with the Malaga goalkeeper. Götze's shot was poor and mis-hit and saved by Wilfredo Caballero.

Götze got another excellent chance to put Dortmund ahead in the 17th minute after Gündogan made a great cut left before sending the ball out to the unmarked Götze on the right. Again Caballero was up to the task and stonewalled Götze's low shot with his feet.

After two great plays, Caballero nearly gifted Dortmund a goal in the 23rd minute. Willy parried the ball off a Lewandowski header, right into the path of Kevin Grosskreutz who but the ball in the back of the net. Fortunately for Malaga, Lewa was offside on the initial header.

Marco Reus couldn't take advantage of a great set piece opportunity on the edge of the Malaga area in the 31st minute, sending his free kick wide of the goal. The chance was created after Weligton pulled down Lewandowski, earning the first yellow card of the match and a suspension for the Malaga defender in the second leg.

Malaga improved drastically in the final minutes of the half finally putting Dortmund under some sustained pressure but they ended up with nothing to show for it other than some close calls for the Germans on the counter attack. The more Malaga tries to pressure the visitors, the more space it creates for Dortmund to attack them on the other end.

Roman Weidenfeller kept Malaga off the scoreboard in the 43rd minute, denying Jeremy Toulalan's header off a corner with an excellent diving save.

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