In the quarter-final match at Signal Iduna Park in Germany, Hajduk U19s defeated Borussia Dortmund on penalties. After 90 minutes it was 1-1, and Marijan Budimir’s team won 9-8 on pens after a wild shootout.
Dortmund maintained possession throughout the match while Hajduk had more chances. Hajduk had its first serious attempt in the 21st minute when Roko Brajković’s left-footed shot went just short of the goal post. Hajduk missed an even bigger chance in the 64th minute.
A more concrete game by Hajduk finally resulted in a goal in the 72nd minute. Brajković precisely crossed from the right side to Mate Antunović who found the back of the net with a beautiful header for the lead!
However, Borussia came back only four minutes later. Julian Rijkhoff accurately executed the penalty kick after Tomislav Arković fouled Michel Ludwig. Hajduk was not swayed by that goal, and they were close to winning even before the penalty shootout. Brunner almost shook his own net after Hrgović’s cross hit the top of the crossbar and was saved by the Dortmund defense.
The drama of penalties did not prove to be a problem for Hajduk. During the eight rounds, both sides were infallible, but in the ninth, Hajduk’s goalkeeper Borna Buljan saved Filippo Mane’s shot, while Ante Kavelj scored for the big celebration!
With this victory against Borussia Dortmund, the Hajduk U19s qualified for the semi-finals of the UEFA Youth League. Hajduk has thus made history and became the first Croatian club to reach the semi-finals of this competition.
The final tournament will be played in Nyon, Switzerland, from April 21 to 24. In addition to Hajduk, Sporting, AZ Alkmaar, and AC Milan advanced to the semi-finals.
On April 21, Hajduk will play against AC Milan, while Sporting and AZ will compete in the second semi-final.
The final is scheduled for three days later, on April 24.
To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.