The X Factor: What’s Been Missing For Borussia Dortmund: Marco Reus

Marco Reus has been outstanding for Borussia Dortmund since returning from injury at the end of November and it just leaves us asking the question: where would Borussia Dortmund be right now had he not been injured for the first three months of this season?

Scoring goals has hardly ever been a problem for Borussia Dortmund this season and instead it has been their shaky defense that has been a major cause for concern so far in 2016-17. However in two out of the three matches that the Black and Yellows have lost, they failed to score a goal and in two out of three matches that they have drawn this season they only scored one time. Despite the defense grabbing all of the attention for what has been Dortmund’s worst problem this season, they were clearly still missing something in attack and since the German forward has returned to the side BVB have looked even more fluid than they already were up front, proving that Marco Reus is what Borussia Dortmund have been missing this season.

In his first match back from injury Marco Reus put in a stunning display to lead Thomas Tuchel’s side to an 8-4 victory over Legia Warszawa, the most goals ever scored in a UEFA Champions League match. In that incredible game, Reus led the line superbly well for der BVB by scoring a hat-trick and assisting another goal, directly contributing to half of Dortmund’s goals in their stunning display. His movement and skill were also on show that evening, proving to be an integral part of every attack they created and always bringing other people into the game. After scoring three goals with an assist in his first Champions League start of the season, Reus was equally superb in his first Bundesliga start of the season, assisting three goals! The scorer turned provider just could not stop creating chances against Borussia Monchengladbach and gave all four of their defenders a massive migrane with his incredible skill on the ball, incisive passes and incredible link-up play with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Ousmane Dembele. Weeks ago Dortmund would have had very little chance of beating Monchengladbach by a massive scoreline of 4-1 but with Reus in the side, Dembele who was arguably even better than Reus on the day and Aubameyang who bagged another two goals, were instantly better, and that is saying a lot given how good both players have been so far this season. The chemistry between Dembele, Reus and Aubameyang is there for all to see and that could prove to be a deadly trio for years to come in the German Bundesliga especially with Dembele being just 19-years old.

With Marco Reus’ horrible susceptibleness to injury, Thomas Tuchel has chosen to take his return back to the side slowly but every single time he leaves him on the bench, Dortmund just don’t look as fluid and that was evident in their massive UCL encounter with Real Madrid. The Spanish giants quickly went two-nil up, again due to some poor defensive positioning by Bartra and Schmelzer to name a few and the brilliance of Karim Benzema in front of goal. But after Aubameyang scored a goal just after Benzema’s second to get Tuchel’s side back into the match out of nothing, it was all set up perfectly for Marco Reus to come on and make a big impact on the game. Dortmund were lacking so much quality in front of goal in that first fifty-five minutes and Reus’ return to the lineup changed the of everything in the match drastically. After saving them with a clearance off the line to deny Madrid a third goal, Reus went on to lead several attacks, nearly helping the Black and Yellows tie things up. With Reus’ calmness in possession of the ball and fantastic running power, Real Madrid became confused on who to mark and Dortmund started to gain control of the match. Still though, all hope of Dortmund finishing as fantastic group winners seemed to be lost until Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang broke free and fed Marco Reus the perfect pass in the box. The German forward dispatched the ball with ease, giving BVB a 2-2 draw and helping them top their group over last year’s winners of the tournament. Batman and Robin combined yet again to score a record breaking 21th goal in the Champions League group stages, proving that you can’t have Aubameyang without Reus and vice versa.

Marco Reus just provides something different to Borussia Dortmund’s attack. The way he can glide past defenders and dance around them before slotting the perfect pass to a teammate is unlike any other player in the side, possibly even the Bundesliga and at the moment, Dortmund are looking absolutely unbeatable again. If Marco Reus can just avoid injury for the rest of the season Borussia Dortmund will certainly continue to fly high, may go deep in the UEFA Champions League and unquestionably will be able to finish as Bundesliga runners-up for the third straight season under Thomas Tuchel.

Oh captain, my captain, it is so good to have you back.



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