Borussia Dortmund sank to a disappointing defeat away to Hoffenheim in their final game of the Bundesliga season, meaning that they finish the season in a disappointing fourth place, but still secure a spot in the Champions League. 

By 90Min
May 12, 2018

Borussia Dortmund sank to a disappointing defeat away to Hoffenheim in their final game of the Bundesliga season, meaning that they finish the season in a disappointing fourth place.

Prior to Saturday's clash, BVB were still in the driving seat, knowing that they needed just a point from their final match to ensure their Champions League status; despite what had been a roller-coaster season, Hoffenheim on the other hand knew that if they were to win by at least a two-goal margin they would overtake Dortmund into third place, which would be the best finish in the home side's history.

With this in mind, the first 10 minutes of the match were very open, with both sides showing spells of attacking intent as they looked to gain the upper hand.

The first chance of the match fell to the visitors with Raphael Guerreiro lashing in a strike from outside the 18-yard box, calling Oliver Baumann in to action as his tipped the effort over the crossbar.

Baumann had to be on his toes again just minutes later as Guerriro found space for the second time, only to unleash an effort that was straight at the German keeper.

The action started to become relentless as both teams searched for the opener and soon Hoffenheim has a chance of their own as Andrej Kramaric turned and shot from distance, with his effort being matched by Baumann's opposite number, Roman Burki, in the Dortmund goal.

But the good times did not last for Burki, as he was to blame for Hoffenheim's opening goal. The Swiss seemed to simply lose sight of the ball as he received a back pass and after getting himself in a muddle, his attempted clearance could only find Kramaric who was happy to stroll in and tuck away what could be one of the easiest goals of his career.

Dortmund are undefeated in their previous 10 matches against Hoffenheim with their last loss to Die Kraichgauer taking place in August 2011. This record looked to be on its way to being broken however as the hosts ramped up the pressure on BVB with sustained attacks on Burki's goal. 

Things were going from bad to worse for Dortmund as Andre Schürrle suddenly found himself through on goal. With the forward being one on one with Baumann it seemed that it would be a certainty that BVB would draw level. However, Schürrle, who has only scored three league goals this season, managed to miss the target entirely, much to Hoffenheim's relief.

Jadon Sancho, the young English star, looked to be Dortmund's most threatening attacking player as he was often seen to be dancing in and out of the Hoffenheim defence in an attempt to make something happen. 

After an exhilarating first half, Hoffenheim went in to the break a goal to the good and ,as it stood, they were to take up fourth place in the league table.

The second half began slowly but after five minutes Hoffenheim were in behind the Dortmund defence and were tantalisingly close to doubling their lead. First Adman Szalai forced Burki into a smart stop at his near post and then Pavel Kaderabek saw his shot cleared away by Lukas Piszczek.

Hoffenheim would live to rue this missed chance as moments later BVB nabbed themselves an equaliser. Guerriro, who had looked dangerous on occasions in the first half, twisted the Hoffenheim defence inside out before slipping the ball in to Marco Reus' path. The German international could hardly miss and he rolled the ball into the corner from close range.

With news of Bayer Leverkusen being 3-0 up their match circulating around the Rhein-Neckar-Arena, Hoffenheim now knew that they were currently out of the Champions League places.

The home crowd soon let out a collective sigh of relief however, as they quickly regained their lead with half an hour on the clock. The scorer of their first goal, Kramaric, found Szalai in space and the Hungarian kept his calm to dink the ball over the on-rushing Burki and into the back of the net.

This now meant that Dortmund, Hoffenheim and Leverkusen were all level on 55 points with only goal difference keeping the sides apart.

Hoffenheim soon extended their lead, gaining the two goal buffer they so desperately needed. A superb delivery from wide free kick caused chaos in the Dortmund box with the ball pin-balling around before Kaderabek ended said chaos by rifling the ball into the roof of the net.

It wasn't pretty but Hoffenheim didn't mind one bit, as the Champions League group stages beckoned.

This was to be the last real action in a dull last few minutes. Dortmund failed to provide any attacking impetus and Hoffenheim appeared happy to sit back and defend their lead.

The only real talking point was a wonderful gesture from BVB as they gave their veteran goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller a fitting send off, substituting him on for Burki in the closing few seconds.

With Leverkusen failing to do the necessary to dethrone Dortmund, it meant that BVB scraped into fourth position, in behind Hoffenheim who were justifiably ecstatic at the final whistle.

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