In a hard-fought and intense Regionalliga match, the Black & Yellow U23s pushed themselves to the limit to secure a 2-1 (0-1) win away to Wuppertaler SV. The result means BVB have won the Regionalliga West title and achieved promotion to the 3. Liga. Steffen Tigges and Ansgar Knauff scored goals in the second half for Dortmund.
Personnel matters: BVB coach Enrico Maaßen fielded the same starting XI that defeated Bergisch Gladbach on Tuesday.
The match & analysis: Neither team needed long to find their feet in the game. From the very first kick of the ball the intention was clear: get the ball forward. The first chance of the match fell to BVB’s Richmond Tachie in the fourth minute. Not long afterwards, Wuppertal came close to opening the scoring, but Henri Weigelt was on hand to make a clearance on the line after a WSV player got a header on goal from the back post. Both sides were able to bypass the midfield at pace and create a host of good goalscoring opportunities. Wuppertal had slightly more of the ball, while BVB looked the more likely to score. A long-range effort from Alaa Bakir in the 25th minute flew just over the crossbar.
Wuppertal had a period of sustained pressure around the 34-minute mark, as the Black & Yellows found themselves pinned down deep within their own half. After a cross played in from the right, Hagemann found himself well placed to prod the ball home from close range to give the home side a 1-0 lead. However, BVB didn’t let their heads drop and looked to strike back quickly. Not long before the end of the first half, BVB captain Steffen Tigges had a shot denied by the Wuppertal goalkeeper. WSV then took the ball down the other end of the park and almost extended their lead to 2-0. In the end, Lars Bender’s effort struck the post. The referee then blew his whistle for half time, with the game still very much in the balance.
BVB coach Enrico Maaßen made two changes at the break: Cebrail Makreckis and Albin Thaqi came on to replace Alaa Bakir and Henri Weigelt. BVB came out all guns blazing and managed to find an equaliser as early as the 47th minute. Tobi Raschl teed up Steffen Tigges, who fired home from a tight angle to make it 1-1. The young Black & Yellows dominated the second half, leaving WSV with little opportunity to get the ball forward. Substitute Cebrail Makreckis made a big impact, posing a constant threat down the right wing.
Six minutes before the end, BVB had the chance to grab the winning goal: Steffen Tigges rounded the Wuppertal goalkeeper, but his shot ended up hitting the upright. The match developed into a real back-and-forth affair in the closing stages. Both teams were out on their feet but still pushed hard for the win. One minute before the end of regulation time, the Black & Yellows found the back of the net, triggering scenes of jubilation. Ansgar Knauff guided the ball into the back of the net after being played in by Dominik Wanner. The game was decided, promotion to the 3. Liga was complete.
Outlook: The Regionalliga West season is over. BVB will play in the 3. Liga next season, provided the appeal lodged by Rot-Weiß Essen against past match assessments is unsuccessful.
Team & goals
BVB U23s: Unbehaun, Hober (87. Krebs), Bakir (46. Makreckis), Tachie (72. Knauff), Weigelt (46. Thaqi), Tigges, Finnsson, Pfanne, Dams, Raschl, Wanner
Goals: 1-0 Hagemann (34), 1-1 Tigges (47), 2-1 Knauff (89)