Going into Tuesday night's UEFA Champions League Group D match at home with Ajax, Borussia Dortmund faced a must-win scenario.
Having been drawn alongside two European powerhouses in Real Madrid and Manchester City, Dortmund went into the match at the Westfalenstadion knowing they had to beat up on the lesser opponent in their group.
Dortmund were the dominant team throughout the match but failed to capitalize on goal-scoring opportunities until the 87th minute.
In the 87th minute, Robert Lewandowski rescued the German champions from losing points at home with a goal assisted by Lukasz Piszczek.
Before the goal from the Polish forward, Dortmund's best scoring opportunity came in the 57th minute when they were awarded a penalty.
Mario Gotze was fouled in the box by Ajax defender Ricardo van Rhijn, but the effort on the penalty kick was weak.
Defender Mats Hummels stepped up to the penalty spot but was saved quite easily by Kenneth Vermeer as his shot lacked any power to it.
Jurgen Klopp's side had plenty of other chances as well throughout the match as they produced 23 shots with seven of them being on target.
Ajax did not go down lightly in defeat as they produced a steady threat on goal in the first half and early on in the second half.
The one player who stood out for the Dutch club was former Liverpool winger Ryan Babel, who gave Hummels and Neven Subotic trouble before he was taken off in the 79th minute for Lasse Schone.
The Dutch champions now face an uphill climb to advance on to the knockout round as they sit in last place in Group D.
Some good news for the Amsterdam club is that their next two matches in the competition are at home, with Manchester City visiting the Amsterdam Arena on match day two followed by Real Madrid three weeks later.
As for Dortmund, they sit in second place with the Group D table behind leaders Real Madrid on goal difference.
Their next match in group play will occur at the Etihad Stadium on October 3rd as they travel to England to face Manchester City.
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