Dortmund retain 'glimmer of hope' for Real return leg
03 April 2014, 11:48
Madrid - Last season's runners-up Borussia Dortmund were left ruing a number of missed chances in their 3-0 first leg defeat at Real Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday, admitting they now had only a slim chance of making the last four.
Dortmund conceded an early goal but missed several good chances to equalise before Real struck twice more to give the Spaniards a big advantage going into the return leg next week.
"After such a game, one is not in a position to make big battle cries for the return leg," Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp told reporters. "But we have the obligation to try everything in the second game.
"We will do just that to maintain that glimmer of hope we have. Talking about chances, we would say that Real are in the semi-finals."
Dortmund, missing half a dozen players through injury and suspension, were visibly lacking in confidence and a clinical edge in front of goal as the Spaniards took control of the tie.
The Germans, who are battling for second place in the Bundesliga and have also reached the last four of the German Cup, made an unusual high number of errors, including two that led to Real's second and third goals.
A good second half from Dortmund failed to provide them with an away goal that could prove decisive in the tie.
"The entire time I had the feeling that there was more in it for us," Dortmund sports director Michael Zorc said. "We had some good chances but we just could not put them away."
Klopp will at least have suspended striker Robert Lewandowski, who scored four goals against Real in the same competition last season, back for the return leg.
His fire power will be much needed with his replacements Pierre Emerick Aubameyang and Marco Reus looking far less threatening at the Bernabeu.
Despite finding ways to venture into the Real half, Dortmund lacked composure in front of goal as they sought to improve their chances of advancing to a repeat semi-final appearance in the competition.
To move on, Dortmund will need to improve on last season's performance against Real in Dortmund at the semi-final stage, when they beat the Spaniards 4-1 in the first leg.
"We know that in the return leg everything is possible but we really have to be realistic about our chances," Nuri Sahin conceded.
"It is not that we did not have chances but we have to be cleverer. We had several counter attacks and we should have used some of them better. At the end of the day we are without a goal and the return leg will be really tough," the midfielder said.