It had now been four games since Andre Schürrle last saw the field for Borussia Dortmund, and how has his new side fared? Four wins, 20 goals scored and a host of youngsters impressing in the BVB attack But the BvB new man came back in grand fashion Tuesday. Coming on just before the hour, replacing Mario Gotze, Schürrle roofed the equalizer for Dortmund late to give the home team a share of the CL spoils against Real Madrid in group action, drawing 2-2 at Signal Iduna Park.
The German international had not featured for BVB since their loss to RB Leipzig due to a sprained knee ligament. Since that loss, in which Dortmund were shut out, the boys from Dortmund have been on fire.
Also without Schürrle’s international teammate, Marco Reus, Dortmund have relied on a host of youngsters in the midfield and wide positions and the results have been incredible. Raphael Guerreiro, Ousmane Dembele, Christian Pulisic and Emre Mor have all emerged and made the Dortmund attack at least as potent as last season’s, which led the Bundesliga.
The skill and the speed these youngsters have attacked with has made it very tough to hold down a place in the Dortmund starting midfield. For example, American phenom Christian Pulisic has played only 76 minutes in the league since he put in a goal and two assists in 90 minutes against Darmstadt.
So, when Schürrle returns what will become of him? Will he slide seamlessly back into his left wing position? Or will the youngsters pouring in the goals keep the vaunted winger on Thomas Tuchel’s bench.
Schürrle certainly has the reputation that would indicate that he would be back in the starting 11. He arrived in Dortmund this summer as a €25 million signing from Wolfsburg. This was Schürrle’s third transfer of at least €20 million since 2013.
In his Bundesliga career, which is now over 175 appearances, he has scored 48 goals and added 31 assists for three different clubs (Mainz, Wolfsburg and now Dortmund). He also has represented Germany 55 times, scoring 20 times and assisting on the goal that won Germany the 2014 World Cup.
Schürrle may have the edge in money behind him and reputation, but the statistics also side with him. When compared to the four youngsters above, the 25 year-old has created more chances and taken more shots than all of his possible replacements, in less minutes than all but Mor and Pulisic. Furthermore, only Guerreiro has a better passing accuracy than Schürrle does this season amongst that group. His success in front of goal may be a question mark, and has been for much of his career, but there is no question that statistically he is the most dangerous player.
The biggest thing seemingly not on the side of Andre Schürrle in this argument is Dortmund’s overall performance with him in the side. In his last appearance for BVB, the club were stifled by the newly promoted defense from RB Leipzig. Dortmund’s attack appeared to lack ideas and Schürrle was a virtual non factor. Dortmund were held scoreless in that game for the only time this season and conceded a late goal to give Leipzig a famous victory.
In Schürrle’s debut for BVB, he had an assist and drew a penalty in Dortmund’s 2-1 victory over his former club Mainz. In addition to the assist, Schürrle was robust in terrorizing the Mainz defense from the left side. He looked a great signing, but Dortmund only put in two goals.
Only two goals sounds a little ridiculous, especially if you’re a fan of Dortmund’s rival Schalke who only have two league goals this season. However, when you consider that in the three games without him Dortmund has averaged 4.67 goals a game in the league and last season they averaged over 2.4 goals a contest; only 2 goals seems apt.
The way Dortmund are playing this season and the sheer amount of attacking talent that Thomas Tuchel has at his disposal makes it impossible to predict who will start in the coming games. Despite that, it is hard to imagine that a healthy Andre Schürrle will not be a big part of the team going forward. While the youngsters have been impressive, only Schürrle has proven the ability to deliver for the entirety of a Bundesliga campaign.
Latest posts by Chris Brase (see all)
- 5 Germans Who Stamped a Return Visit to Russia in 2018 - July 3, 2017
- It’s Wagner Time for Die Nationalmannschaft - June 8, 2017
- For Club and Country: The Time is Now for BvB’s Christian Pulisic - March 10, 2017