Borussia Dortmund opened up a 15-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga on today with a 1-0 win over Cologne to take another step closer to the German league title. Poland striker Robert Lewandowski's 44th-minute strike proved to be enough to give Dortmund their 19th win of the season from 25 games.
With nine matches left to play, Jurgen Klopp's team are cruising towards their first league title since 2002 and a UEFA Champions League place next season. Second-placed Leverkusen have a chance to close the gap when they host Wolfsburg on Saturday evening, while defending champions Bayern Munich, fourth, badly need a win at third-placed Hannover after back-to-back defeats.
"This was probably one of the most deserved 1-0 wins of all times," said Klopp. The boys created so many chances over the 90 minutes. The fact that things worked out this way is unbelievable.
"The team is continuing to take these little steps (towards the title). Robert Lewandowski is a great lad, I am sincerely pleased for him that he scored the winner, that is another feather in his cap."
Dortmund's Lewandowski opened the scoring when he chested down the ball from a long pass and slammed it into the bottom far corner just before the half-time break to put his team in control.
Despite missing last week with a knee injury, Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller produced several good saves, especially in the first half, to keep Cologne out. Dortmund's reserve goalkeeper, Australian Mitchell Langerak who produced a stellar performance in Munich last week in the 3-1 win over defending champions Bayern, was relegated back to the bench.
Cologne's keeper Michael Rensing had a busy second half as he denied Lewandowski, only for Dortmund striker Lucas Barrios to then hit the crossbar, for the eighth time this season, with less than 15 minutes left.