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Borussia Dortmund 4-0 Atlético Madrid: Germans take control of Group A

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Atlético were humiliated in a rout at the Westfalenstadion.

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Borussia Dortmund blew away Atlético Madrid on Wednesday night in what should serve as a rude awakening for a side that has yet again failed to convince.

Axel Witsel kicked off the annihilation with a deflected goal just before halftime. While Atlético improved in the second half, they were unfortunate to hit woodwork twice. The Bundesliga leaders capitalized and were unrelenting in their efforts to do so, as a frustrated Atleti were carved open time and time again in the final 20 minutes.

Atlético began aggressively with several retrievals in midfield but few touches for Antoine Griezmann or Diego Costa. Jan Oblak did not have a save to make in the first 15 minutes as his defense forced sideways passes from Dortmund’s sizzling attackers. Witsel had a long-range effort saved on 21 minutes as Oblak sprung toward his near post before the ball could bounce off it — that was the game’s first real opportunity. Christian Pulisic had another chance about 10 minutes later as he took up an Achraf Hakimi cross and blazed a shot over the bar before Griezmann hit side netting on the very next sequence.

Hakimi would pop up again on 38 minutes to assist a Witsel goal. The Belgian’s shot was deflected and sent Oblak the wrong way as Atlético were punished for defending too deep — there was an unsurprising lack of control with Rodrigo Hernández on the bench. On the strength of Witsel’s goal, Dortmund sailed into halftime a goal up.

Rodri replaced Thomas at halftime in a bid to help Atlético actually keep the ball. Saúl took a brilliant touch from a corner but lashed a shot wide on 50 minutes in a warning to the hosts. Two minutes later the Spain international beat Roman Bürki from outside the box, but couldn’t beat the crossbar with a curling shot. Bürki then got down to makes a save from low Saúl shot, his third within six minutes.

Atlético continued to edge closer but found it difficult to find spaces and lacked the killer final ball. With a little more than 15 minutes on the clock, Dortmund took advantage of the visitors’ profligacy as substitute Raphael Guerreiro tapped home from an inch-perfect Hakimi cross — Juanfran lost him entirely in buildup.

Correa tried to respond on 78 minutes as Godín played him through, but his shot rang off the post. Moments later Griezmann hit side netting — again set up by Godín — to sum up Atleti’s night despite a superior second half (which was true until the final 10 minutes).

Jadon Sancho wrapped things up moments after he entered the match when Hakimi cut through a static defense once more and laid on a low cross for the England starlet — Oblak was left with no chance, even as the teenager may have strayed offside. Guerreiro dumped even more salt into a gaping wound with his second goal on 89 minutes — Filipe Luís gave the ball away and no one tracked back to protect Oblak.

The mattress makers fall to second in the group with this result, though they still have a five-point cushion on Monaco and Club Brugge. They will return to the capital and get set for Saturday’s fixture against Real Sociedad.

BVB XI: Bürki; Piszczek, Diallo, Zagadou, Hakimi; Witsel, Delaney (Dahoud 35’); Pulisic (Sancho 79’), Bruun Larsen (Guerreiro 63’), Götze; Reus.

Goals: Witsel 38’ Guerreiro 73’ 89’ Sancho 83’

ATM XI: Oblak; Juanfran, Godín, Lucas, Filipe Luís; Thomas (Rodri 46’), Saúl (Correa 69’), Koke, Lemar; Griezmann, Costa.

Goals: None