Borussia Dortmund v Newcastle United FC: Group F - UEFA Champions League 2023/24


Borussia Dortmund were hardly mentioned among the early favourites for the 2023/24 Champions League but have the chance to win their second title in the competition in Saturday’s clash with Real Madrid at Wembley.

BVB sold star midfielder Jude Bellingham to their upcoming opponents last summer and struggled for consistency in the Bundesliga after finishing second in 2022/23, when they agonisingly missed out on the championship on the final day.

However, after topping a stacked group earlier in the tournament, Dortmund produced some wonderful performances in the knockout stage to reach the showpiece event at England’s national stadium.

Here’s how they booked their spot in the 2023/24 Champions League final.

Borussia Dortmund v Newcastle United FC: Group F - UEFA Champions League 2023/24Borussia Dortmund v Newcastle United FC: Group F - UEFA Champions League 2023/24

Dortmund got through a deadly group / Ralf Ibing – firo sportphoto/GettyImages

Dortmund were handed a rather monstrous set of opponents in Group F. Paris Saint-Germain were the top seeded side with Milan and Newcastle United making up the quartet.

However, after a somewhat ropy start, Edin Terzic’s side won three of their last four games to finish top.

PSG, who Dortmund would come up against later in the competition, set their stall out on Matchday 1 with a dominant 2-0 victory over their German visitors in September, while their second fixture ended in a goalless home draw with Milan.

The first of their three wins on the trot arrived at Newcastle. Felix Nmecha’s first half-effort was enough to separate the two sides as Dortmund impressively kept their hosts at bay before bagging another victory over the Magpies on home soil.

It was a more comprehensive showing back at Signal Iduna Park as Niclas Fullkrug and Julian Brandt struck to take BVB to the top of the group, a position they wouldn’t relinquish.

A Marco Reus penalty put Dortmund ahead early on in the second encounter with Milan at San Siro and second-half efforts from Jamie Bynoe-Gittens and Karim Adeyemi powered them to a 3-1 success after Samuel Chukwueze’s equaliser.

Those three points saw the German side reach the knockout stages but first place was still up for grabs when PSG visited North Rhine-Westphalia. There was more pressure on the French outfit to secure a result but it was Adeyemi who struck first before Warren Zaire-Emery levelled things up.

Date

Fixture

19/09/2023

Paris Saint-Germain 2-0 Borussia Dortmund

04/10/2023

Borussia Dortmund 0-0 Milan

25/10/2023

Newcastle United 0-1 Borussia Dortmund

07/11/2023

Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Newcastle United

28/11/2023

Milan 1-3 Borussia Dortmund

13/12/2023

Borussia Dortmund 1-1 Paris Saint-Germain

Pos

Team

Played

GD

Pts

1.

Borussia Dortmund

6

+3

11

2.

Paris Saint-Germain

6

+1

8

3.

AC Milan

6

-3

8

4.

Newcastle

6

-1

5

Mats Hummels, Marco Reus, Ian Maatsen, Marcel SabitzerMats Hummels, Marco Reus, Ian Maatsen, Marcel Sabitzer

Dortmund prevailed 3-1 on aggregate against PSV / Dean Mouhtaropoulos/GettyImages

Dortmund’s route through the knockout stage has undeniably been kinder compared to final opponents Real Madrid.

2023/24 Eredivisie champions PSV Eindhoven proved no push-overs in the last 16, holding BVB to a draw in the first leg. Donyell Malen had bagged the opener in the 24th minute, firing in at the near post against his former side, and PSV wasted chance after chance before eventually getting back on level terms through Luuk de Jong’s penalty.

Proceedings were more straightforward for Dortmund in the return leg. Jadon Sancho, who returned to his former club on loan from Manchester United in January, made his mark in just the third minute, creating space on the edge of the area before squeezing his shot beyond Walter Benitez.

Isaac Babadi’s slip at the back allowed Reus to run in and nonchalantly slide in the second in second-half stoppage time, securing a 3-1 aggregate victory.

Date

Fixture

20/02/2024

PSV Eindhoven 1-1 Borussia Dortmund

13/03/2024

Borussia Dortmund 2-0 PSV Eindhoven

Borussia Dortmund v Atletico Madrid: Quarter-final Second Leg - UEFA Champions League 2023/24Borussia Dortmund v Atletico Madrid: Quarter-final Second Leg - UEFA Champions League 2023/24

Dortmund reached the final four by downing Atletico Madrid / Jürgen Fromme – firo sportphoto/GettyImages

Atletico Madrid awaited in the quarter-finals and Dortmund suffered their second defeat in the tournament with a 2-1 loss in Spain.

A disastrous attempt to play out from the back was picked off by Rodrigo De Paul, who ran straight into the box and drove his shot beyond Gregor Kobel inside four minutes. More ordinary defending allowed Antoine Griezmann to delightfully clip into Samuel Lino’s path, allowing the free left-wing-back to control and finish tidily for a 2-0 lead.

Sebastien Haller’s sole goal of the UCL campaign so far halved the deficit as the Ivory Coast striker got on the end of a deflected pass and tucked home.

Atleti have so often been defensively resolute in tough away trips in Europe but were porous at Signal Iduna Park as two quick bursts sent BVB through to the semi-finals. Brandt’s deflected strike was followed soon after by Chelsea loanee Ian Maatsen’s clinical finish, though Mats Hummels’ own goal put the Spaniards back on level terms in the tie.

Things got even better for Diego Simeone’s visitors when Angel Correa reacted quickest to put Atleti in front overall, but Fullkrug’s divine header and Marcel Sabitzer’s arrow from distance meant the Germans took a 5-4 lead they wouldn’t give up.

Date

Fixture

10/04/2024

Atletico Madrid 2-1 Borussia Dortmund

16/04/2024

Borussia Dortmund 4-2 Atletico Madrid

Mats Hummels, Emre Can, Nico SchlotterbeckMats Hummels, Emre Can, Nico Schlotterbeck

Dortmund beat PSG twice in the semi-final / Markus Gilliar – GES Sportfoto/GettyImages

The semi-finals saw Dortmund once again paired up with PSG in their last campaign with Kylian Mbappe in their ranks before his summer exit.

However, the expected Real Madrid signing was nowhere to be seen over the course of the two legs, failing to sparkle when the Ligue 1 giants needed him most as BVB bagged two 1-0 victories to reach the final.

It was Fullkrug who took the headlines thanks to his brilliant touch and rasping finish from a long punt forward from Nico Schlotterbeck.

Dortmund were stout in defence and threatening in attack and it was a similar story in the second leg in Paris as they capitalised on the desperation of Luis Enrique’s side to book their spot at Wembley.

They had to resist early pressure at Parc des Princes but showed their weapons on the break and eventually doubled their aggregate lead early in the second half. The goal came in simple fashion as an unmarked Hummels nodded Brandt’s corner beyond Gianluigi Donnarumma.

Terzic’s side had their fair share of luck as PSG were denied three times by the woodwork, but ultimately Dortmund were worthy advancers as they ended Mbappe’s dreams of a farewell European crown and gave themselves real hope of a second ever Champions League title.

Date

Fixture

01/05/2024

Borussia Dortmund 1-0 Paris Saint-Germain

07/05/2024

Paris Saint-Germain 0-1 Borussia Dortmund



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