Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Hertha Berlin: BVB have top four in sight
(Photo by Alexandre Simoes/Borussia Dortmund via Getty Images)

Borussia Dortmund kept their Bundesliga top four hopes alive after a 2-0 win over a Hertha Berlin side struggling for form.

The Black & Yellows completely dominated against a defensively solid Hertha side in the first half, with only two chances of note before Julian Brandt and Youssoufa Moukoko struck in the second half to give the hosts an ultimately comfortable win at Signal Iduna Park.

And after Frankfurt dropped points on Sunday, Edin Terzic's side move to just two points behind the top four as they sealed a fifth win in seven across all competitions.

Team news

Terzic made one change from the entertaining Champions League draw with Sevilla in midweek, with Jude Bellingham coming in for Thomas Delaney. There was space on the bench for Gio Reyna, who returned to the squad after injury, whilst Jadon Sancho and Raphael Guerreiro were both still sidelined.

BVB had registered 80% possession by the midway point of the first half but, without sufficient tempo and depth in their game at the outset, their chances came from set-pieces rather than open play.

Mats Hummels headed Marco Reus' free-kick from the left flank wide of the post in the eighth minute, then the captain struck the crossbar himself with a free-kick from 20 yards out 10 minutes later.

At the other end, the Black & Yellows could count themselves fortunate that Max Mittelstädt narrowly missed the target on one of Hertha's rare forays forward in the 24th minute.

Around the half-hour mark, BVB temporarily increased the tempo. Bellingham played the ball through to Brandt, but Marton Dardai managed to take the ball off the Dortmund man's toes before he could pull the trigger.

The best attack of the first half also culminated in the best opportunity: Thorgan Hazard finally forced his way to the byline and cut the ball back to Bellingham, whose shot looked like it might wrong-foot Rune Jarstein. But the goalkeeper made a sensational reflex save with his left glove and denied an almost certain goal.

Further pressure was applied in the second 45 minutes but it was not enough to challenge the Hertha back line. Ultimately, it was an effort from long range that brought about the opening goal.

Jarstein error

Reus and Brandt linked up on the left and Brandt pulled the trigger from a standing position around 25 yards from goal. The ball swerved in the air and Jarstein was too slow to raise his arms to block the shot as the ball found the back of the net.

Shortly afterwards, Mo Dahoud's strike took a deflection off a Hertha player and rebounded onto the crossbar.

Hertha initially did not change their approach, the visitors continuing to wait for counter-attacking opportunities, whilst Dortmund would have gone on to double their lead, had Jarstein not shown his class with a wonderful save to deny Emre Can's near-post header from substitute Reyna's corner.

Darida sees red

Hertha pushed higher up the pitch in the closing stages, but were dealt a blow with 80 minutes on the clock. Vladimir Darida went in studs up on Reus' Achilles tendon to halt a counter-attack – a foul for which he was immediately sent off, leaving Hertha a man down for the final 10 minutes.

Reus tried to continue after receiving lengthy treatment but then had to be replaced by Moukoko, who almost teed up a second goal with a low cross that Reyna could only direct onto the post late on.

BVB seal victory

The 16-year-old then got on the scoresheet himself, making it 2-0 after Erling Haaland had been dispossessed to seal victory for the hosts.

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