Reus, Aubameyang combine to dismantle Monchenladbach
Borussia Dortmund bounced back against a hapless Borussia Monchengladbach with Marco Reus and Ousmane Dembele starring in a 4-1 goal fest.
Thomas Tuchel had every right to be angry about his team on the previous weekend, knowing how much potential his team can unfold. Unlike in the 2-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt, Dortmund managed to keep their level of intensity up throughout the match.
For once it was the Black and Yellows who struck back, scoring just seconds after going behind to nullify Gladbach's early lead. Dortmund went on and steamrolled their crumbling guests.
Nuri Sahin picking up an injury early in the match was certainly a blow for both the Turkish international and Dortmund. Against a passive and disoriented Gladbach defence, Dortmund could afford to concede an early goal in hindsight, but going behind first has been their undoing in many matches thus far -- especially on the road.
Manager rating out of 10
7 -- Thomas Tuchel elected to start with Julian Weigl and Mario Gotze on the bench as Nuri Sahin started in midfield. Playing with three at the back with Matthias Ginter, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Marc Bartra has given the Black and Yellows the most stability so far this season.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Roman Weidenfeller, 4 -- After six minutes, the deadlock was broken. Gladbach striker Raffael with a flat shot to the left of the goal, still leaving more than a yard to the left post. Yet, Weidenfeller couldn't get to the ball. He conceded a similar goal against Frankfurt. Saving shots from distance have never been the 36-year-old's strong suit. The guests didn't give Weidenfeller the chance to redeem himself.
DF Matthias Ginter, 7 -- A tidy match from Ginter, which was helped by his teammates taking pressure off the backline.
DF Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 8 -- The rock in BVB's defence.
DF Marc Bartra, 6 -- The Spain international headed a cross right on the feet of Raffael. He could see the impact of his mistake seconds later on the scoreboard. Nonetheless, Bartra shook off the early mistake and assisted Piszczek for the go-ahead goal in the 15th minute. The centre-back often advanced forward to press high up the field, popping up in the final third at times.
MF Lukasz Piszczek, 7 -- Although Piszczek used to play as a striker for Hertha Berlin back in the day, three goals after 11 league matches is a high tally for his standards.
MF Gonzalo Castro, 5 -- Gonzalo Castro's matches often resemble a telenovela. Even in average filler episodes there is some forced drama. Especially in the first half, his passes often just missed their teammates to create frustration instead of danger. Too many unforced errors from the 29-year-old.
MF Nuri Sahin, 6 -- It was a great shame for the 28-year-old, whose first Bundesliga start of the season came to an end after 36 minutes due to injury. Pairing up with Castro, Sahin's left foot brought some vertical edge to Dortmund's play. BVB's first chance was created by a long pass to Schmelzer. Average pass distance: 17.3 meters
MF Marcel Schmelzer, 7 -- Fielded as a left-wingback, Schmelzer provided the width that stretched the Gladbach defence. He put in some vital blocks at the other end as well.
FW Ousmane Dembele, 9 -- Ousmane Dembele was an absolute handful, as he skipped past Gladbach players like training dummies. But it wasn't only show'n'shine from the 19-year-old, who collected three pre-assists and scored the third goal himself in his typical fashion. Dembele clicked with Marco Reus from the first second, which is a great promise for the matches to come.
FW Marco Reus, 9 -- Marco Reus delivered breathtaking football in his first Bundesliga start of the season. He picked up three assists with the potential for more, nutmegging and back heeling on the way to create one goal more beautiful than the other. He had two promising attempts blocked at the last second and a backheel goal flagged offside. It has to be mentioned, though, that Reus also ran into trouble at times feeding a ball right into the path of Raffael. The 27-year-old showed the Westfalenstadion how good he can be, but obviously there is still room for improvement.
FW Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, 8 -- The Gabonese striker picked up a brace, to build on his lead as the leading goalscorer in the Bundesliga with 15 goals. Aubameyang now has scored eight goals in the last four league matches. "Raphael Guerreiro is maybe the hardest to replace for us at this moment," Tuchel said on Friday -- maybe not.
MF Julian Weigl, 6 -- Weigl came on for Sahin after 36 minutes. Again, the 21-year-old's passing accuracy was below the 90 percent mark.
MF Christian Pulisic, NR -- Came on for Marco Reus in the 78th minute when the match was already done and dusted. The United States international used his minutes to plow through Gladbach defenders in front of the eyes of newly appointed national team coach Bruce Arena.
MF Emre Mor, NR -- Substituted in the 89th minute for Dembele to get his well-deserved round of applause.
Stefan Buczko covers Borussia Dortmund for ESPN FC. Twitter: @StefanBuczko.