Paco Alcacer (bottom right) celebrates a goal against VFL Wolfsburg on Saturday, a strike which could have huge ramifications. (Getty)
Did Paco Alcacer just decide the Bundesliga title race?
At the very least, he just set up the most significant Der Klassiker in recent memory.
Alcacer’s two stoppage-time goals gave Borussia Dortmund a 2-0 victory over VFL Wolfsburg on Saturday, while Bayern Munich unexpectedly tripped up in a 1-1 draw away to SC Freiburg.
That leaves Dortmund two points clear top the table of Bayern, which had caught up to its title rivals after spending nearly the entire season lagging well behind.
Alcacer’s gorgeous free kick, second goal boost BVB
Alcacer has now scored four times in his last four matches for Dortmund, and the third of those might prove most critical.
In the first minute of stoppage time Saturday, Alcacer stepped up and drilled a free kick from just outside the box through a few feet of space vacated in part by teammate Thomas Delaney’s work in the Wolfsburg wall:
Three minutes later, Alcacer sealed the three points with another goal.
The Spanish striker leads Dortmund with 16 league goals this season, and that includes the game-winner to beat Bayern last November in the first Der Klassiker of the season.
The second should be enthralling, thanks in part to Bayern’s own slip.
Bayern concedes early, settles for frustrating draw at Freiburg
Bayern Munich is going to want this one back. Specifically, Robert Lewandowski is.
The reigning champions failed to win for only the second time in their last 15 Bundesliga matches, and Lewandowski missed several opportunities in the second half to keep his side atop the table.
The hosts stunningly went ahead in the third minute through Lucas Höler’s quality header:
Lewandowski equalized in the 22nd minute by setting himself up with a silky touch in the air and volleying home:
But from there, neither Lewandowski nor Bayern could turn 27 total shots into more than a solitary goal. That included a point-blank header miss by the Polish superstar as the game wore on.
Bayern came out of the gate slow this season but hit a stride of torrid form this calendar year and preyed upon Dortmund sputtering in recent weeks to seize the Bundesliga lead on goal differential.
Now that the Bavarians are behind again, they’ll need to produce that same kind of performance next Saturday at the Allianz Arena and leave this one in the dust. Or else that’s where they’ll end up, too.
Joey Gulino is the editor of Yahoo Soccer and moonlights as a writer. Follow him on Twitter at @JGulinoYahoo.
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