Deutsche Welle (English edition)
Bundesliga: Jude Bellingham and Ansgar Knauff rescue Borussia Dortmund
After playing starring roles against Manchester City in the Champions League in the week, teenagers Jude Bellingham and Ansgar Knauff rescued Borussia Dortmund against Stuttgart this weekend.
Stuttgart 2-3 Borussia Dortmund, Mercedes-BenzArena (Kalajdzic 17', Didavi 78' - Bellingham 47', Reus 52', Knauff 80')
Just two weeks ago, Ansgar Knauff was playing for Borussia Dortmund's reserves against Fortuna Düsseldorf's reserves in the Regionalliga West – the fourth tier of German football.
On Tuesday, the 19-year-old winger was a surprise inclusion in first team's starting eleven away at Manchester City in the quarterfinal of the Champions League, working hard to offer an outlet for his team.
And on Saturday, he came off the bench to score a late winner
away at Stuttgart in the Bundesliga.
After receiving a pass from Erling Haaland on the edge of the Stuttgart box, Knauff initially appeared to stumble on the ball, but he was merely dribbling himself into a position from which he could shoot with his right foot.
And shoot he did, curling emphatically into the bottom corner to secure a hard-fought three points for Borussia Dortmund which, for a long time
in Swabia, seemed anything but guaranteed.
After falling behind to a Sasa Kalajdzic header (which was as typically well-executed as it was poorly defended), Dortmund were a shadow of the welldrilled outfit which impressed in Manchester in the week. Erling Haaland was quiet, but Dortmund had another teenager they could rely on.
Bellingham sets the pace - again Hey Jude: Bellingham set
the pace for BVB
Jude Bellingham was arguably the only player in yellow who replicated his performance against City. The 17-year-old Englishman was his usual hardworking self in midfield, covering ground, pressing intelligently and launching attacks as best he could.
It was no surprise that it was Bellingham who, immediately after the restart, ran onto to Gio Reyna's knock-down to fire Dortmund level. It was his second Dortmund goal, his first in Germany's top flight.
But Bellingham's influence on proceedings and his presence in midfield was most sorely felt when, for just one minute, he wasn't there. After going down holding his upper thigh, the former Birmingham City man left the pitch for treatment.
There was a thumbs-up to the bench that he could continue but, before he could return, Mateu Morey's misplaced pass
set up Stuttgart's equalizer.
And so the stage was set for Knauff to score his first Bundesliga goal with his first Bundesliga shot, and become Dortmund's fifth teenage goal-scorer of the season.
"Edin gives me good instructions and he makes me feel comfortable," Knauff told Skypostmatch, after receiving a bear hug and a thump on the chest from a beaming head coach Edin Terzic. "He encourages me to play to my strengths, to go for the one-onones."
Whether in the Regionalliga, the Champions League or the Bundesliga, that's exactly what Ansgar Knauff does.