​Barcelona held on for a draw on the opening day of the Champions League group stages against Borussia Dortmund thanks to some heroics from their goalkeeper, Marc-André ter Stegen.


It was the hosts who carved out the first chance of the game but Marco Reus couldn't find a way past his compatriot ter Stegen on his weaker left foot, while Jadon Sancho fired the ball over the bar with an effort from the edge of the box just before half-time.


Luis Suárez created Barcelona's first real opportunity of the match but was denied at the near post by Roman Bürki, but the visitors handed Borussia Dortmund the chance to take the lead when Nélson Semedo fouled Sancho in the penalty area.

Jadon Sancho,Nelson Semedo

Reus stepped up to test himself against ter Stegen and once again it was Barcelona's goalkeeper who came out on top, keeping out Dortmund's captain with a powerful left hand while also collecting the rebound.


Substitute Julian Brandt came as close as anyone to breaking the deadlock when his long-range effort rattled the crossbar, but neither side could find a winning goal before the full-time whistle was blown.


Borussia Dortmund


Key Talking Point

 

Borussia Dortmund might be used to having the majority of the ball in the Bundesliga, but Lucien Favre's side wisely didn't try to match Barcelona at their own game on Tuesday.

Frenkie de Jong,Thorgan Hazard

The Black and Yellows looked to stay compact and frustrate the visitors when Barça were in possession, something made possible by Mats Hummels, but it was how Borussia Dortmund transitioned from attack into defence which was their biggest threat throughout the match.


With Jadon Sancho, Marco Reus and Thorgan Hazard supporting Paco Alcácer, Dortmund's quick one-touch passing worked wonders by exploiting areas of the pitch that were open after long spells of possession for Barcelona.


Even when Barça were able to hold onto the ball for long periods of time, the visitors were being forced to work a lot more than they're used to in La Liga due to Borussia Dortmund's pressing, something which made midfield maestro Arthur visibly tired even before the break.



Player Ratings


Starting XI: Burki (6); Hakimi (7), Akanji (7), Hummels (9*), Guerreiro (6); Witsel (8), Delaney (6), Reus (7); Sancho (8), Hazard (7), Alcacer (6).


Substitutes: Brandt (6), Bruun Larsen (6).


Star Man


If anyone was still unsure about Borussia Dortmund's decision to re-sign Mats Hummels from Bayern Munich during the summer, then his performance against Barcelona did more than enough to leave no one sitting on the fence.


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The 30-year-old didn't put a foot wrong in the first-half, breaking up attacks with perfectly timed tackles and turning over possession with smart interceptions, something which then allowed him to showcase his fantastic ability on the ball. 


Dortmund's attacking players proved once again that they've got what it takes to go toe to toe with European football's best, but Hummels' performance highlighted the club's one biggest improvement from last season.


Barcelona


Key Talking Point


Despite growing as the match went on, Barcelona didn't have their first clear chance of the match until after half-time, while their hosts had already created a number of opportunities and even won themselves a penalty.

Frenkie de Jong,Lionel Messi

It was clear that Borussia Dortmund had the wind in their sails and although Lionel Messi's introduction for the first time this season helped to bring a touch more balance to the game, it was at the other end of the pitch where Barcelona's real superstar was on Tuesday.


Player Ratings


Starting XI: Ter Stegen (8*); Semedo (6), Pique (7), Lenglet (6), Alba (6); Arthur (7), Busquets (7), de Jong (7); Fati (7), Suarez (6), Griezmann (7).


Substitutes: Roberto (6), Messi (7), Rakitic (6).


Star Man


For all of Barcelona's match-winning players, it was actually Marc-André ter Stegen who stepped up to be counted for at the Westfalenstadion.


A strong first-half performance saw the best chances of the game thwarted, but the Germany international saved his best moment(s) for after the break, keeping Marco Reus out from the penalty spot before denying Dortmund's came a few more times as the game went on.


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Looking Ahead


Borussia Dortmund should have the edge when Bundesliga football returns this weekend with an extra 48 hours rest compared to Eintracht Frankfurt, who face Arsenal on Thursday.


Barcelona should find things a little more straight forward on Saturday, however, as they face Granada at the Nuevo Estadio de Los Cármenes.