BERLIN (AP) — With Erling Haaland still injured, Borussia Dortmund needed Julian Brandt to score the winner in a 2-1 victory over Augsburg on Saturday in the Bundesliga.
Brandt helped to fill the gap created by the Norway forward’s continued absence, grabbing Dortmund’s second goal in the 51st minute with a low shot inside the right post after Marco Reus sent the ball on.
But Dortmund again struggled going forward without the 21-year-old Haaland, who remained out with muscular problems after missing last weekend’s defeat to Borussia Mönchengladbach and the narrow win over Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League on Tuesday.
Haaland was directly involved in 11 of Dortmund’s 17 Bundesliga goals before its loss at Gladbach, while he started the season by scoring 11 goals across seven games in all competitions.
Raphaël Guerreiro opened the scoring Saturday with a penalty in the 10th minute after Augsburg captain Jeffrey Gouweleeuw raked Donyell Malen’s heel with his boot.
Dortmund went on to control the game without creating clear chances and was made to pay when Axel Witsel lost the ball in midfield and Andi Zeqiri equalized on a rebound in the 35th. Arne Maier’s initial effort from distance crashed back off the crossbar.
Brandt came to Dortmund’s rescue, cutting inside to elude a defender and letting fly from the edge of the penalty area inside the right post.
Dortmund improved but failed to take any more of its opportunities, with Reus and Thorgan Hazard both hitting the goal-frame.
“Last season we would have conceded the equalizer. This season we take it over the line,” Brandt said of Dortmund’s fifth win of the season.
SCALLY’S FIRST GOAL
American defender Joe Scally scored his first Bundesliga goal to seal a 3-1 win for Borussia Mönchengladbach at Champions League participant Wolfsburg, which finished with 10 men and slumped to its second straight defeat.
It was Gladbach’s first win in Wolfsburg for 18 years since a 3-1 victory on Nov. 22, 2003. Scally was 10 months old at the time.
“It feels really good,” fellow goal-scorer Jonas Hofmann said. “They were two top teams that we’ve beaten."
Patience is wearing thin at Hertha Berlin, and not only for the investor behind the club.
Hertha’s fans whistled their team after a 2-1 loss at home to Freiburg, which came after a 6-0 rout in Leipzig the weekend before.
Freiburg scored with its first attack in the 17th minute, when Philipp Lienhart headed in a corner.
Hertha fans whistled their lackluster team off at the break.
The visitors looked more likely to score in the second half until Krzysztof Piatek equalized with Hertha’s first good move in the 70th.
It was a rare example of first-touch soccer as Suat Serdar passed left to Maximilian Mittelstädt, who crossed straight away for Piatek to score.
Jurgen Ekkelenkamp hit the crossbar as rejuvenated Hertha pushed for a winner, but Nils Petersen then killed the home team’s brief momentum when he scored Freiburg’s winner with a header to a corner in the 78th.
Leipzig missed a host of chances against promoted Bochum until American coach Jesse Marsch introduced his star substitutes in a 3-0 win.
Bochum goalkeeper Manuel Riemann was in inspired form and Emil Forsberg hit the crossbar before Marsch sent on André Silva and Dominik Szoboszlai in the 69th.
Silva promptly earned a corner and Szoboszlai sent it in for the Portugal forward to head the breakthrough less than a minute after they were on the field.
Christopher Nkunku made sure by scoring two goals against the dispirited visitors.
Stuttgart, which also has an American coach in Pellegrino Matarazzo, enjoyed a 3-1 win against Hoffenheim.
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Ciarán Fahey, The Associated Press