Reus appeals for patience with BVB, Füllkrug explains continued use of Werder shin-pads

By Peter Weis   @PeterVicey

After a narrow 1-0 league victory over VfL Wolfsburg, former BVB skipper Marco Reus appealed for patience with his team’s slow start to the season. 

New BVB acquisition Niclas Füllkrug – still seeking his first goal since joining die Schwarzgelben – kept his sense of humor about a missed scoring opportunity.

A razor-thin 1-0 win over VfL Wolfsburg didn’t exactly bring the Westfalen Stadion crashing down on Saturday afternoon. German football’s perennial runners-up did manage to secure their third win of the season and remain undefeated through five rounds. Two draws nevertheless leave them out of the top-four. Should Bayer 04 Leverkusen – as expected – defeat 1. FC Heidenheim tomorrow, Dortmund will wrap up the weekend in sixth-place.

Dortmund themselves have fallen into a familiar pattern reminiscent of the Lucien Favre years, failing to register wins against teams from the bottom third of the table. Both Bochum and Heidenheim have battled Dortmund to draws. Long-time skipper Marco Reus – who scored the game-winning goal – was left to explain what’s been going on with the team for whom he relinquished the armband this summer.

“We found it difficult to get into the game at the beginning,” Reus conceded when speaking to the Sky mics afterwards, “but still had a lot of composure on the ball I think we had the game under control for 90 minutes. Even though we didn’t have the big scoring chances, especially in the first half, we stayed patient.”

“Poor performances and defeats are unwelcome here,” Reus also acknowledged, “We still stuck to our game and supported each other well. We can only get out of this together. Small steps first. Individual duels first. The rest will come on its own.”

It remains unclear as to how much patience the club’s fans or its administrative brass will have should matters proceed south, as they still might in a crowded title field that also includes Leverkusen and Leipzig. Hoffenheim and Stuttgart are also making a play for the top-four with their early season form. Former SV Werder Bremen striker Niclas Füllkrug – considered a questionable signing by some – has yet to score for his new club.

A wonderful opportunity went begging on Saturday afternoon. Füllkrug took a loathsome touch on a Mats Hummels vertical in the 54th. BVB trainer Edin Terzic actually gave Füllkrug the starting nod over the slumping Sebastien Haller up top. Last season’s winner of the Bundesliga’s “Torjägerkanone” could only reward the faith with the comical scene.

Füllkrug’s post-match-interviewer, after broadcast cameras revealed that Füllkrug had still been wearing his old SV Werder Bremen shin pads following his subbing off, asked the 30-year-old if his apparel choice had anything to do with it.

“I’m a fan of not replacing things that still work,” the new Dortmund said while flashing his trademark grin, “from that point of view, there’s no reason to replace the shin pads. I have scored many goals with them, had a lot of success with them. Accordingly, they remain as they are. They are special, they’re broken in, they are good. Besides Werder is a club I still like very much.”

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