A late strike from Marco Reus rescued a point for Dortmund in a game which saw them settle for a 1-1 draw with Cologne.
Thomas Tuchel’s side, as expected, controlled the game from the onset as they played fluid football and looked compact in defence.
The 28th-minute, though, saw Marcel Schmelzer deliver the ball to Pawel Olkowski who then struck home to give Cologne a 1-0 lead. The goal was scored as a result of sloppy defending with Dortmund’s backline seemingly too lull to thwart the impending danger.
As stated earlier, Reus chipped in with a goal in the last minute of stoppage time thus giving Dortmund a positive to take out of the game, but in reality, Dortmund missed a great chance to leapfrog Hoffenheim and Hertha Berlin to sit in third place.
Dortmund are now one point adrift of Hoffenheim who sit in fourth place and two points below third-placed Hertha Berlin who suffered a shocking home defeat to Werder Bremen on Saturday.
Thomas Tuchel’s side aren’t far off the top four, the only problem, though, is the fact that Dortmund have to travel away to Hoffenheim to take on the league’s only undefeated side on Friday.
While there’s still plenty of time left in the season, Dortmund will be keen on making their way into the top four before the Christmas festivities kick-off, and the Bundesliga goes on a mid-season break.
The stakes are quite high for Dortmund, as they may yet lose their most valuable player, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has been in lethal form this term, scoring 15 league goals in 13 appearances as he sits atop the goal charts.
Should Aubameyang move elsewhere in January, and Dortmund fail to make their way into the top four, chances are, the team will be in somewhat of a sombre mood going into the second-half of the season which could, in turn, have a devastating effect on der BVB’s already turbulent form.
While the chances of the Gabon international leaving Dortmund in the winter are relatively slim, Aubameyang will be unavailable for selection in January and probably in the first week of February due to his country’s involvement in the African Cup of Nation.
Either way, the North Rhine-Westphalia outfit will be without their key man when the second-half of the season kicks off, and it’s sure to reduce their potency up front with a like for like replacement not present within the team’s ranks.
Thus, in an attempt to go into the New Year on a high, Dortmund will have to secure a win over Hoffenheim as well as Augsburg who they’ll welcome to Signal Iduna Park a week after the game against Die Kraichgauer.