Berlin - Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang converted a second-half penalty to
seal Borussia Dortmund's 2-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt in Saturday's German
Cup final - on what could be his final Dortmund appearance.
Aubameyang's calmly taken spot-kick was his 40th goal this
season for Dortmund in all competitions and ended Dortmund's misery after
losing the three previous cup finals in Berlin in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
His winning penalty was Aubameyang's 120th goal in his 190th
game in four seasons with Dortmund.
However, despite having a contract until 2020, this could be
Aubameyang's final appearance having said he will decide his future after talks
with Dortmund's bosses.
He is reportedly weighing up bumper offers from Paris
St-Germain, AC Milan and China's China's Tianjin Quanjian with PSG his most
After Dortmund took the lead at Berlin's Olympic Stadium
through Ousmane Dembele's early goal, Frankfurt's forward Ante Rebic's
equalised to make it 1-1 at the break before Aubameyang turned the game.
Dortmund romped to a 3-1 home Bundesliga win over Frankfurt
in mid-April, but this was a much bolder performance from Niko Kovic's
Eintracht, who had won only one of their previous ten games coming into the
Dortmund took the lead with just eight minutes gone when
Dembele was released down the right flank and the fleet-footed 20-year-old cut
inside Frankfurt defender Jesus Vallejo and curled his shot into the net.
But Eintracht started to pressurise the Dortmund defence.
Frankfurt's US international Timothy Chandler whipped in a
cross and Croatia international Rebic was just inches from connecting with the
goal at his mercy.
He made no mistake on 29 minutes when Serbia midfielder
Mijat Gacinovic's superb pass split the Dortmund defence and released Rebic,
who slotted his shot past Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Burki.
Frankfurt should have taken the lead when Rebic traded
passes with Haris Seferovic whose shot beat Burki, but hit the post on 39
Neither Dortmund captain Marcel Schmelzer nor playmaker
Marco Reus came out for the second half.
Schmelzer had carried a leg knock into the final, while Reus
injured his right knee midway through the first half.
Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel responded by switching from a
3-3-2-2 formation to a 4-5-1 formation with Aubameyang, the Bundesliga's top
scorer this season with 31 goals, as the loan striker.
Japan midfielder fired at Frankfurt goalkeeper Lukas
Hradecky just after the break.
But the scene was set for Aubameyang.
His flying bicycle kick was only cleared off the line by
Frankfurt's Mexico international Marco Fabian on 64 minutes.
And the Gabon hot-shot showed a cool head by slotting the
winning penalty straight down the middle on 67 minutes after substitute
Christian Pulisic was brought down by Frankfurt's goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky.
Frankfurt boss Kovac responded by bringing on Frankfurt's
burly striker Alexander Meier, 34, the Bundesliga's top-scorer in 2014/15, for
the final 20 minutes to try to force an equaliser to no avail.