It was like a scene from Groundhog Day. For the second day in a row, a top-ranked Spanish team went to Germany and got thumped. On Tuesday Bayern hammered Barcelona 4-0 and tonight Borussia Dortmund beat Real Madrid 4-1.
Both Champions League semi-finals head back to Spain next week for the second leg, but unless we see some record breaking comebacks, it will be Bayern Munich v Real Madrid at Wembley next month in the final.
Tonight Real Madrid had no answer for Robert Lewandowski or Dortmund. Lewandowski scored all four Dortmund goals in a romp as they totally outplayed and outfought Real.
Madrid were ripped apart in the opening minutes but Lewandowski could not put in the rebound from Lopez’s save, But three minutes later, the Polish striker has adjusted his shooting aim as he got on tje end of a Mario Gotze cross to make it 1-0. Nice goal, but dreadful defending from Pepe.
Despite dominating the first half, Dortmund could not turn their possession into a second goal, and then right on the stroke of half-time they gifted an equaliser to Madrid. Dortmund defender Mats Hummels’ back pass was woefully short and Gonzalo Higuain snatched onto it and squared for Ronaldo to tap in his 11th goal in ten European games.
The goal rattled Dortmund but Jurgen Klopp settled his side at half-time and they came out with a purpose in the second half and Lewandowski grabbed his second with clinical finishing on the turn to slot home Reus’ pass and beat Lopez on 50 minutes.
Lewandowski netted his third five minutes later when he latched onto Marcel Schmelzer’s cross, brilliantly dragged the ball back with studs to beat Pepe before drilling his shot into the roof of the net.
With Dortmund fans in delirium, Lewandowski got his fourth of the night when Reus was pulled down in the box by Xabi Alonso, and Lewandowski blasted the ball into the roof of the net to wrap up the tie.
Real Madrid will feel that Ronaldo’s away goal gives them some hope in the return leg at the Bernabeu next week. But I cannot see Madrid shutting out Dortmund, making their task almost impossible.
Interesting that in both games, the soft underbellies of Real Madrid and Barcelona, their center backs, where exposed by the two German sides. When you dominate your domestic leagues like Barca and Madrid do, it is easy to cover up defensive weaknesses. But against really good competition you get exposed and that is what we have seen.