Real Madrid 2-2 Borussia Dortmund: German side fight back to secure top spot in Group F
By Simeon Gholam
Last Updated: 07/12/16 11:39pm
Borussia Dortmund came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Real Madrid at the Bernabeu and secure top spot in Champions League Group F.
Only victory would have seen Real overhaul Dortmund on Wednesday night, and Karim Benzema's two goals either side of half-time seemed to have helped Zinedine Zidane's side achieve just that.
But Dortmund fought back as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang pulled one back before substitute Marco Reus finished from close range late on to nick a point for the German side.
Reus' goal was also Dortmund's 21st in the competition so far, a new record for the group stage in the Champions League.
The relatively low stakes made for a thoroughly entertaining first half and it was Real who dominated as they searched for the three points they required to claim top spot.
Zidane's side had several opportunities to take the lead in the opening exchanges, but were thwarted more than once by Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller, who kept out Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo and James Rodriguez with fine stops.
Eventually, though, Real did find the breakthrough. Dani Carvajal was allowed too much space down the right to burst forward and cross for Benzema, who had evaded his marker at the far post to finish from close range.
Falling behind did seem to wake Dortmund up and they nearly pulled level before the break. Ousmane Dembele set-up Christian Pulisic after 38 minutes but the midfielder was denied by Keylor Navas.
Moments after missing a glorious opportunity to double their lead, Benzema did add his and Real's second after 53 minutes, heading home at the back stick after Rodriguez had teased a cross up into his path.
It seemed like a long way back for Dortmund at that stage, but they were back in the game on the hour mark as Gonzalo Castro picked out Marcel Schmelzer breaking in behind, and his volleyed cross found Aubameyang who finished first time.
Dortmund stepped up their tempo as they attempted to find an equaliser, but it was Real who came closer to scoring again. Weidenfeller denied Ronaldo's shot from the edge of the area, before Benzema had his header cleared off the line by Reus from the resulting corner.
Ronaldo then went close again in the 78th minute, but his effort hit the postafter being found unmarked in the box by Lucas Vazquez.
And Real would pay for those missed opportunities in the 88th minute as Aubameyang countered quickly and found Reus in the middle with a low cross, and he made no mistake in slotting home past Navas.