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Dortmund overpower Leipzig to jump atop in Bundesliga

Berlin, March 4 (IANS) First-half goals from Marco Reus and Emre Can helped Borussia Dortmund go top of Bundesliga after moving 2-1 past resilient Leipzig at the curtain raiser of the 23rd round.

Leipzig caught the better start on the road and came close with five minutes played when Dominik Szoboszlai unleashed a hammer from long range before Christopher Nkunku pulled wide from a promising position two minutes later, reports Xinhua news agency.

The hosts thought they had opened the scoring out of the blue, but Julian Brandt’s goal was ruled offside by the video assistant referee in the 15th minute.

Dortmund eventually broke the deadlock five minutes later as Leipzig goalkeeper Janis Blaswich fouled Reus inside the box. The Germany veteran stepped up and converted the subsequent penalty to open the scoring in the 21st minute.

Leipzig had the chance to level the score at the half-hour mark but for all that Marcel Halstenberg’s volley attempt missed the target narrowly wide.

Dortmund staged a clinical chance conversion and made it two after Can’s long-range drop-kick stunned Blaswich in the 39th minute.

After the restart, Leipzig assumed control but couldn’t do any damage while the BVB had the chance to put the game beyond doubt, but Blaswich’s diving save denied Reus the second goal of the night in the 67th minute.

Leipzig increased the pressure as the match progressed and halved the deficit in the 74th minute when David Raum flicked on Mohamed Simakan’s cross to the back post, where Emil Forsberg tapped home from very close.

The Red Bulls pressed frenetically for the equalizer, but Dortmund’s defense stood firm and secured all three points on home soil.

With the result, Dortmund clinched its 10th straight victory to move atop the standings at least for one night.

“We played very well in the second half and were the better team, but Dortmund scored twice in the first half and played it well. I think it was an entertaining top clash for everyone,” said Leipzig striker Forsberg.

–IANS

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