Real Madrid twice came from behind to avoid a second-straight loss to Borussia Dortmund with an entertaining 2-2 draw at the Bernabeu.
While Real will be disappointed not to have claimed victory on home soil, the result should suit both sides as they hone in on a place in the knockout phase. With Manchester City drawing with Ajax in Group D’s other match, Dortmund still top the standings on eight points, a point ahead of Real, with Ajax trailing by a further three points.
Dortmund looked poised for a repeat of their 2-1 over the Spanish champions of two weeks ago with a strike from Marco Reus and an own goal from Alvaro Arbeloa in first-half injury time sandwiching a goal by Real defender Pepe. But a late Mesut Ozil strike rescued a point for Jose Mourinho’s side.
The home side controlled possession for much of the encounter, while also dominating in the number of efforts on goal. Yet it was Dortmund that long held the ascendancy in the score line.
Reus opened the scoring in the 28th minute as he continued the impressive start he has made to his Dortmund career by latching onto a flick on by Robert Lewandowski and taking the ball into the area before hammering a shot past Iker Casillas. It was a fine strike by Reus, but Casillas will doubtless take the blame for being beaten at his near post.
The lead would not last for long as Real quickly got back on level terms just six minutes later. Ozil produced a fine cross to the back post and Pepe powered over Marcel Schmelzer and headed past Roman Weidenfeller from six yards out.
The visitors would retake the lead in the final minute of the opening period. Lewandowski’s physical presence again unsettled Real as he flicked on a long ball upfield into the path of Kevin Grosskreutz. The midfielder directed a pass across goal for Gotze who chested the ball down but was denied a shooting chance of his own as Arbeloa flicked the ball over his own goalkeeper.
Just when it was looking as though the German champions would hold on for a famous victory, up stepped the former Schalke and Werder Bremen man Ozil. Taking the free-kick ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo, the Germany international whipped the ball low inside the near post, just evading Weidenfeller.