October 4, 2023

Julian Brandt scored with his back and Borussia Dortmund held on to move to the top of the Bundesliga after beating Hoffenheim 1-0 on Saturday.

Brandt scored for the fourth consecutive league game for Dortmund. Marco Reus whipped in a free kick and Brandt bent forward so the ball skimmed in off his back shortly before the break.”

Dortmund’s victory against Hoffenheim marked their ninth win from nine games across all competitions this year and allowed them to move three points clear of defending champion Bayern Munich and surprise challenger Union Berlin.

Following the game, Brandt acknowledged the team’s current good form, saying, “Things are working out for us at the moment. A little bit of luck is part of it. We’re efficient.

“Today we were a little less efficient than we’ve been over the past few weeks when we played very well. We have many guys in great form and, as we saw in the last few weeks, others who’ve come in and scored very important goals for us. A lot is coming together.”

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However, Dortmund had to survive some tense moments towards the end of the game. Marius Wolf thought he had doubled the team’s lead with a powerful strike, but the goal was disallowed due to a foul by Nico Schlotterbeck on Ihlas Bebou.

Despite Hoffenheim’s continued pressure, Dortmund goalkeeper Gregor Kobel denied Andrej Kramaric from a resulting free kick.

“In the past, we often lost such games, so from that point of view, it’s a positive development,” Brandt said.

“Nevertheless, it’s a very, very, very strong moment, what we’ve delivered in the past few weeks. And we have to keep going.”

Meanwhile, Hertha Berlin secured a crucial 2-0 win over Augsburg in snowy conditions in the capital, which allowed them to climb out of the relegation zone.

In other Bundesliga games on Saturday, Leipzig held on to beat Eintracht Frankfurt 2-1, Cologne lost at home to Wolfsburg 2-0, and Werder Bremen enjoyed a 3-0 win over Bochum. Schalke hosted Stuttgart late in the day.

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