La Liga

PSG 0-1 Dortmund (0-2 agg): Mats Hummels the hero as BVB reach Champions League final

PSG 0-1 Dortmund (0-2 agg): Mats Hummels the hero as BVB reach Champions League final

Celebration: Mats Hummels’ header helped Borussia Dortmund into the Champions League final (AFP via Getty Images)

Borussia Dortmund have reached a first Champions League final for 11 years after beating Paris Saint-Germain again in their pulsating last-four tie.

Mats Hummels’ second-half header secured another hard-fought 1-0 victory for the unfancied Bundesliga giants at the Parc des Princes, sealing a 2-0 aggregate semi-final victory overall following Niclas Fullkrug’s winner on home soil last week to book their place against either Real Madrid or domestic rivals Bayern Munich at Wembley on June 1.

Dortmund – then under the tutelage of Jurgen Klopp – were beaten by Bayern at Wembley on their last final appearance in 2013, while they famously won the competition for the first and so far only time back in 1997 after overcoming Juventus in Munich.

PSG once again had a succession of golden chances but just could not score, hitting the woodwork six times in total across the two legs and registering no fewer than 45 shots without ever managing to find the back of the net.

Another heartbreaking Champions League defeat prolongs their long quest to claim European football’s biggest prize, with Kylian Mbappe unable to turn the tide on his final home appearance in the competition for PSG.

The French superstar will now end his tenure at the club without having won the biggest prize of all as he prepares to head to Real Madrid when his contract expires in the summer.

PSG have still only ever reached one Champions League final in their history, losing to Bayern in Lisbon in 2020.

The anticipated early onslaught from PSG never materialised on Tuesday night in front of a rocking home crowd, with the hosts indebted to goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma for a huge save to deny the pacey Karim Adeyemi after a blistering Dortmund counter-attack that came straight after a crucial last-ditch challenge from Hummels on Mbappe at the other end.

The Parisians had their moments in the first half, but Mbappe was mostly well-contained by Julian Ryerson as the likes of Vitinha and Ousmane Dembele both tried and failed to trouble Gregor Kobel, who easily gathered an early effort from Goncalo Ramos – drafted in along with Lucas Beraldo for Bradley Barcola and the injured Lucas Hernandez – as Fabian Ruiz also saw a powerful strike blocked by Nico Schlotterbeck.

Dortmund, unchanged from the first leg following Saturday’s 5-1 Bundesliga demolition of Augsburg, had already fired a couple of warnings when first-leg match-winner Fullkrug’s header from a free-kick was held by Donnarumma and Ryerson lashed into the side netting.

PSG started the second half in positive fashion, Ryerson deflecting behind a dangerous Achraf Hakimi cross before teenage sensation Warren Zaire-Emery somehow hit the post from close range after Ramos had hooked a deflected cross into his path.

However, they were then quickly sucker-punched, with Hummels losing Beraldo before expertly heading in Julian Brandt’s corner from the left to double Dortmund’s advantage in the tie.

PSG hit the woodwork for the fourth time in the tie as Nuno Mendes’ drive cannoned back off the post, with the Ligue 1 champions then initially awarded a penalty for Hummels’ rash challenge on Dembele – a decision that was quickly and rightly changed to a free-kick on the edge of the box by Italian referee Daniele Orsato, backed up by VAR.

PSG threw everything at Dortmund in search of a late comeback, with head coach Luis Enrique sending on the likes of Barcola, Marco Asensio and Lee Kang-in.

They incredibly hit the woodwork twice as they laid siege to the BVB penalty area for the final 20 minutes, Mbappe’s effort deflected onto the frame of the goal before a rocket from Vitinha bounced back off the underside of the crossbar.

Captain Marquinhos and Lee both fired narrowly wide, while Kobel tipped a low effort from Mbappe wide of the post.

Hummels had the ball in the net for the second time late on after finishing nicely from another corner, but he was well offside and the goal did not stand.

A night of immense frustration for PSG and Mbappe was summed up when their outgoing star was denied a last-gasp penalty after tussling with Nico Schlotterbeck inside the box.

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