Dortmund ease into last 32 with Qäbälä victory

Dortmund 4-0 Qäbälä
BVB are through to the last 32 with two games to spare courtesy of strikes from Marco Reus, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Highlights: Dortmund 4-0 Qäbälä
Highlights: Dortmund 4-0 Qäbälä
  • Dortmund qualify for round of 32 after Krasnodar beat PAOK elsewhere in Group C
  • Marco Reus and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang register fine first-half strikes
  • Sergej Zenjov own goal and Henrikh Mkhitaryan effort round off scoring
  • Next games: Krasnodar v Dortmund, PAOK v Qäbälä (26 November)

Marco Reus and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang were inspirational as Borussia Dortmund eased to a comfortable Group C victory over Qäbälä, a result which, coupled with Krasnodar's win at PAOK, secures Thomas Tuchel's side a place in the UEFA Europa League round of 32.

The hosts pinned their Azerbaijani visitors back from the off. Reus's first-minute free-kick was just tipped over by a backtracking Dawid Pietrzkiewicz while Henrikh Mkhitaryan also threatened before the quarter-hour mark.

Just as Qäbälä began to gain a foothold, however, Tuchel's charges struck. Mkhitaryan cut in from the left flank to tee up Reus, whose controlled effort from the edge of the box found the bottom corner. Backed by a rocking atmosphere, BVB upped the ante, with Aubameyang deservedly doubling the lead with a cool finish moments before the interval.

Adnan Januzaj replaced Reus after half-time, a substitution that hardly hindered BVB's attacking thrust. The Manchester United loanee was involved as Mkhitaryan came close three minutes after the restart. The Bundesliga outfit eventually had another goal to show for their continued dominance, however, when Gonzalo Castro's 67th-minute attempt deflected off Sergei Zenjov and past Pietrzkiewicz for an own goal.

Mkhitaryan was next to get in on the act three minutes later, scoring the goal his performance deserved when he powered a shot into the top corner from just inside the area. It was a brilliant finish to conclude a thoroughly satisfying evening for those of a Dortmund persuasion – who can look forward to more UEFA Europa League football into the new year.

Batman and Robin in fine fettle
Reus and Aubameyang, firm friends off the field and famed for their superhero antics on it, were at the heart of every BVB attacking move in the first period. Time and again the duo's pace and speed of thought proved too much for Qäbälä's beleaguered defence to cope with.

Where the visitors struggled
Just when they looked to produce something on the counter after frustrating their illustrious hosts, Qäbälä were guilty of falling asleep at the back and allowing Mkhitaryan and Reus to combine for the opener. Indeed, despite the tireless Dodô’s best efforts, Roman Hrygorchuk's side struggled to get out of their own half after going behind.