Borussia Dortmund vs. Manchester City: Score, Highlights and Grades
Manchester City played like it had nothing to play for.
For the most part, that was true. The Citizens were already eliminated from advancing to the Champions League Round of 16, but with a chance to qualify for the UEFA Europa League, they fell to Borussia Dortmund 1-0 to secure their place at the bottom of Group D.
With the win, Dortmund capped off an incredibly impressive performance to win what many thought was the most dangerous group.
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For the first 45 minutes, the Citizens didn't look as disinterested as many thought they would be.
Despite the ball being pushed around between both teams' midfields for a majority of the time, City controlled a majority of the possession and made several promising attacks.
But things completely turned in the second half.
Dortmund controlled the ball for what seemed to be the entire 45 minutes and finally broke through in the 57th minute when Jakub Blaszczykowski sent in a low cross to the middle of the box and Julian Schieber tapped it in.
The Borussians looked eager to add a couple more, as did City in the closing minutes, but neither team was able to find the back of the net as it finished 1-0 at Signal Iduna Park.
Ivan Perisic, Borussia Dortmund: A
The 23-year-old Croatian was incredibly aggressive down the left side, and no one in a Manchester City shirt looked intent on stopping him.
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As a result, he ended up with three total shots (two on target) while displaying some magnificent technique on a beautiful volley that required a solid save from Joe Hart. Throw in a couple of fouls drawn, an abundance of searching crosses and several perfect passes that could have resulted in goals, and Perisic was a clear star for The Black Yellows.
Jakub Blaszczykowski, Borrusia Dortmund: A
Blaszczykowski was quiet for much of the first 45 minutes, but he made his presence felt during the only goal of the match.
Julian Schieber deserves credit for the goal, but it was the 26-year-old Pole who set him up with a gorgeous grounded cross that was simply impossible to defend.
As the match wore on, Blaszczykowski added more runs down the right side and a few more dangerous passes that probably should have ended with better finishes.
Joe Hart, Manchester City: B+
He might have been able to stop the goal if he came out a little quicker, but it's more likely that Blaszczykowski's cross was simply placed too perfectly to deal with.
Other than that, Hart was tremendous, fending off a relentless Dortmund attack in the second half. In the end, he finished with seven saves, including a couple from near point-blank range that were truly world-class.
Vincent Kompany, Manchester: C+
For the most part, it was yet another fantastic performance from Kompany.
But he got badly beat by Schieber for the goal, and even though it was just one mistake, it was a brutal one. I'll let ESPN's John Brewin sum it up:
Vincent Kompany is not what he was.— John Brewin (@JohnBrewinESPN) December 4, 2012
That could be a little harsh, but it wasn't Kompany's best moment.
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