Borussia Dortmund 1 – Bayern Munich 0


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Germany international fullback MARCEL SCHMELZER of Borussia Dortmund sticks in a boot to poke the ball away from Bayern Munich’s Holland World Cup winger ARJEN ROBBEN during the classic winner-take-all, de facto Bundesliga title match contested at sold-out Signal Iduna Park in North Rhine-Westphalia.
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4/11/12
Bundesliga
Spieltag # 30

1 – BORUSSIA DORTMUND ————— Lewandowski 77′
0 – BAYERN MUNICH

Both a skillful goal – albeit against the run of second half play – and a critical save off a last-ditch penalty kick in the final, frantic fifteen minutes combined to permit defending Bundesliga champion BORUSSIA DORTMUND to narrowly defeat visiting Rekordmeister BAYERN MUNICH 1-0 in a winner-take-all clash which has surely ended the dramatic title chase in the German first division for this exciting 2011/12 season.

Borussia Dortmund, who celebrated the seventh national title in club history at the end of the last campaign, entered this pivotal match with 22-times German champion Bayern Munich proudly sporting a 27-game unbeaten streak (including 22 victories) in all domestic competitions. Twenty-three rounds in the Bundesliga had passed since die Schwarzgelben had lost last — on the road at Hannover 96 in mid-September — as a matter of fact. Against this backdrop was it imperative for the visiting Bavarians to leave Signal Iduna Park having bagged all three points.

With so few games remaining in the Bundesliga season, a draw would have seemed to benefit Borussia Dortmund more at the outset. Much to their credit, however, trainer JUERGEN KLOPP’s side did not adopt any sort of conservative, ‘safety-first’ style and, indeed, die Schwarzgelben did much to thoroughly dominate the opening forty-five minutes against visiting Bayern Munich. Either of Borussia Dortmund’s two productive wingers, Germany international KEVIN GROSSKREUTZ and Poland international JAKUB BLASZCZYKOWSKI, might have scored were it not for a pair of good saves from the Bavarians’ Germany World Cup goalkeeper MANUEL NEUER.

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Borussia Dortmund striker ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI (far left), the emerging Poland international who poached eight goals on 33 Bundesliga appearances in his first season of German football last term, steers his 37th minute off the post during the top of the table clash at Signal Iduna Park.
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And, with the halftime break looming, Bayern Munich dodged a serious bullet when Poland international striker ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI had his back post header crash off the upright with the goalkeeper Neuer completely beaten.

The second half, however, was an entirely different story as it was the Bavarians, for the most part, who applied all the pressure after the break once Neuer had comfortably dealt with an angled shot from Lewandowski and a passive header from Japan international SHINJI KAGAWA, the attacking central midfielder who has managed 20 goals in the Bundesliga since signing from J League club Cerezo Osaka in the summer of 2010.

France World Cup winger FRANCK RIBERY raised his game after the re-start and was rather unfortunate to not draw a penalty after being clipped in the box by Borussia Dortmund’s Serbia international defender NEVEN SUBOTIC shortly after the hour.

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Japan international SHINJI KAGAWA, the 23-year-old attacking midfielder who stands second on Borussia Dortmund having scored 12 goals in the Bundesliga this season, looks to settle the ball and separate himself from the Bayern Munich’s Germany international defender HOLGER BADSTUBER (right) and France World Cup winger FRANCK RIBERY (left) during the top of the table clash at Signal Iduna Park.
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The decisive moment of the match and, indeed, this 2011/12 Bundesliga campaign coincided with a short corner kick taken by Borussia Dortmund in the 77th minute. The lurking Grosskreutz got a hold of a half-clearance at the top of the box and launched a low shot that was adroited re-directed by Lewandowski, standing with his back to the Bayern Munich goal, past the helpless Neuer. A 20th goal this season in the German top flight for the Poland international, who has clearly supplanted Paraguay World Cup striker LUCAS BARRIOS this term as the first choice striker for die Schwarzgelben, then.

Holland World Cup winger ARJEN ROBBEN, who had the misfortune of playing Lewandowski onsides with respect to the go-ahead goal, had an opportunity to level for Bayern Munich from the spot with less than five minutes remaining but Borussia Dortmund goalkeeper ROMAN WEIDENFELLER was able to read the Dangerous Dutchman perfectly and dove to his left to smother the penalty kick with relative ease.

Each team would rattle the woodwork thereafter in the closing stages while Robben had one last chance, which the Bayern Munich winger skied well over the crossbar.

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Borussia Dortmund goalkeeper ROMAN WEIDENFELLER, the 31-year-old veteran who has now posted 13 clean sheets while starting 29 of 30 Bundesliga games this 2011/12 season for the defending national champions, watches the inadvertant header of Serbia international defender NEVEN SUBOTIC smack off the woodwork during the decisive Bundesliga battle at sold-out Signal Iduna Park in western Germany.
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2011/12 BUNDESLIGA season (after 30 rounds)
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69 pts … BORUSSIA DORTMUND ……………… 23 won, 3 lost, 6 tied … 67-22 gf/a
63 pts … BAYERN MUNICH ………………………. 20 won, 7 lost, 3 tied … 69-20 gf/a
57 pts … SCHALKE 04 GELSENKIRCHEN …. 18 won, 9 lost, 3 tied … 65-39 gf/a

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Poland international ROBERT LEWANDOWSKI (9) of Borussia Dortmund, the 23-year-old striker purchased from KKS Lech Poznan for 5.0 million Euros in the summer of 2010, chips the ball over Bayern Munich’s Germany World Cup goalkeeper MANUEL NEUER only to hit the crossbar late in the winner-take-all, de facto Bundesliga title match before the predominantly partisan crowd of 80,720 at sold-out Signal Iduna Park in North Rhine-Westphalia.
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BORUSSIA DORTMUND : Weidenfeller – Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer – Guendogan (Perisic 74′), Kehl – Blaszczykowski (Owomoyela 89′), Kagawa (Leitner 74′), Grosskreutz – Lewandowski

BAYERN MUNICH : Neuer – Lahm, Boateng, Badstuber, Alaba – Luiz Gustavo, Kroos – Robben, Mueller (Schweinsteiger 61′), Ribery – Gomez (Olic 75′)

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