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Dortmund cruise but centre-backs exposed against sixth-division side

Dortmund cruise but centre-backs exposed against sixth-division side
From ESPN - August 12, 2017

Is preseason over yet? Well, it was the first cup round for Borussia Dortmund. Although it was a competitive match, it still very much had a preseason feel about it as Dortmund started their DFB-Pokal title defence against sixth-division side FC Rielasingen-Arlen. The Black and Yellows progressed to the next round, dismantling the amateur side 4-0 without much trouble at Freiburg's home ground.

Positives

Maybe it was a good thing that this match did not really challenge BVB because real competition might have exposed the Black and Yellows, who even against a sixth-division team looked troubled at the back. It was also a welcome opportunity for Peter Bosz to give 18-year-old left-back Jan-Niklas Beste a run out while Marcel Schmelzer is still working on his comeback.

Negatives

As already mentioned, the Westphalians were easily carved open by their opponents. Due to Rielasingen-Arlen's obvious lack of footballing quality, BVB were not punished for it. But it looks as though it will become a theme that Dortmund's centre-backs will face an unhealthy dose of one-on-one battles. Not good news for a team that needed to improve its defensive stability above all over the summer.

Manager rating out of 10

5 -- Bosz gave Beste a run-out and awarded Shinji Kagawa his first minutes since his injury.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Roman Burki, 5 -- Had a few saves to make but nothing too spectacular. Overall a quiet afternoon.

DF Lukasz Piszczek, 5 -- One awkward clear as right-back. He ended the match in attacking midfield.

DF Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 5 -- Did his thing, held the line.

DF Marc Bartra, 6 -- There are defenders in a match who solely identify with defensive actions. Not Bartra. The Spaniard is always trying to help up front whenever he gets the chance -- which is why he was there for the tap-in after 11 minutes to score the eventual winner.

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