The hosts produced a committed performance to shut out the defending champions and cut their Bundesliga lead to five points, while hauling themselves out of the drop zoneBorussia Dortmund saw its gap at the top of the league reduced to five points, as it was left frustrated at the SGL Arena in the face of a spirited showing by Augsburg, which moved out of the relegation places following a well earned 0-0 draw on Saturday.
With an eight-match winning streak under their belts, Jurgen Klopp's men were expected to come storming out of the blocks against a side that had been battling against a swift return to the 2. Bundesliga all season.
Augsburg was not fazed by its opponent, however, and matched the defending champion stride for stride during the opening exchanges. The hosts had set out their stall to contain and frustrate Dortmund, meaning that chances remained at an absolute premium.
In fact, it was visiting keeper Roman Weidenfeller who was called into action first, getting down well to smother a towering header by Torsten Oehrl just before the quarter hour mark.
Daniel Baier sent a further warning Dortmund’s way moments later when his snap shot took a ricochet off Mats Hummels and fizzed just wide of the far post.
Klopp’s men slowly began to come out of their shell in the offensive third, but were still finding it difficult to create a meaningful sight on goal the face of some resolute defending by Augsburg.
Robert Lewandowski went closest five minutes before the break, with only a last ditch nod over the bar by Sebastian Langkamp preventing the Pole’s header from looping over Simon Jentzsch and into the back of the net.
Augsburg came flying out of the interval, with a blistering counterattack nearly finished off by Axel Bellinghausen barely a minute after the restart, but for an outstanding save by Weidenfeller.
At the other end of the pitch, Kevin Grosskreutz sent a header towards the far post, only to be denied by a phenomenal diving save by Jentzsch as the match crossed the hour mark.
The slick passing game that has become Dortmund’s hallmark was nowhere to be seen, with Augsburg continuing to get numbers back in its own half to thwart any danger.
Lewandowski sent a low drive wide in the 82nd minute, but by then Augsburg had done enough to claim a deserved point as the league leaders simply ran out of ideas.
With Bayern Munich thrashing Hoffenheim 7-1 earlier on Saturday, Dortmund’s lead at the Bundesliga summit is cut to five points with nine games remaining. Augsburg meanwhile moves out of the relegation zone on goal difference.