What the papers say: ‘Diaby unstoppable for Dortmund’

It was a response at the right time: The 2-1 win against Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night puts Bayer 04 back on track at the end of the first half of the season. Deservedly so as the reporters in the media confirm after the victory over BVB:

The Süddeutsche Zeitung looks at the opening stages of the game: “These high-frequency attacks made it look like both teams wanted to demolish each other with a barrage of shots. The opening goal appeared to be imminent at any moment and it didn’t actually take that long to happen. It started with an aimless punt from Bürki that ended up with Leon Bailey. One look, a long ball and Bürki was facing right winger Moussa Diaby. In the next moment, the ball was in the back of the net (14’). When Leverkusen’s wings get going then the Leverkusen game works.”

The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung chose the headline, “Bayer hard to stop” and reports: “With the exception of a few few brief phases, BVB were clearly the weaker team on the night. Really early on in the game, there were a whole series of promising attacks that just lacked the final pass or precision in finishing. It did not take long for Leverkusen to sort themselves out and reply with a brilliant goal. ...This game was also about for who the small crises that both teams have recently slipped into will develop into a serious problem. Bayer became more solid while Dortmund’s insecurity was clear for all to see.”

The Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger highlights the impressive collective performances of the two goalscorers in their individual ratings: Both Moussa Diaby and Florian Wirtz were awarded top marks of 1.5. On Diaby: “Strong running, optimum ball control and brilliant finishing for the opening goal. Posed Guerreiro and Hummels with insoluble problems with his pace.” And Wirtz “restored Bayer 04’s creativity.”

The Rheinische Post gave Diaby the top mark of 1 for being slightly more effective than Wirtz (2): “After several recent poorer performances in the league, the 21-year-old showed an impressive improvement against BVB. Made it 1-0 (14’) and impressed in the creation of the goal with text-book ball control. Was unstoppable for the Dortmund defence and crowned his performance with build-up for the 2-1 goal.”

The Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung also had no doubt about the validity of the Leverkusen win: “Leverkusen had the upper hand. BVB were unable get a grip on wingers Bailey and Diaby, Jude Bellingham was often left chasing the very impressive Wirtz in midfield, and boss of the defence Hummels was unusually erratic.”

A new superlative: Florian Wirtz is now the youngest-ever Bundesliga players to score four goals.

Bild-Zeitung highlights an interesting statistic: “The knock-out blow on 80 minutes: After winning the ball, Leverkusen were lightning fast and Wirtz slotted the ball into the net from 17 metres. The winner at 2-1. Wirtz is now the youngest-ever Bundesliga players to score four goals. Dortmund were hopelessly inferior before the break to the Leverkusen tempo (best first half of the season in seven years).”

“Give me another minute”

Kicker reports online: “History repeats itself: Why Bosz did not sub Wirtz.” It continues: “But Bosz was thinking about taking his jewel off. ‘We talked in the dugout about his running dropping off,’ explained the Leverkusen head coach. ‘I don’t know how but he suddenly got a second wind.’ History repeated itself for Bosz. It was his second spot-on non-substitution against BVB in succession. In his last encounter with his former club, the spectacular 4-3 win almost a year ago, he wanted to off the injured Lars Bender. He answered with, ‘Give me another minute’ – and shortly after that scored the winner with a header.”

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