Preamable: Good evening and welcome to what should be a glorious dreamcoat of a game; a technicolour symphony that should light up Europe. After all, it pits the champions of Germany v the champions of Spain. Jurgen Klopp v Jose Mourinho. More than a dozen world-class players on show. And two offenses that couldn't be more high-tempo if they were soundtracked by an 80s aerobics disco beat.
It has all the makings of a classic*. Admittedly Dortmund are struggling in the Bundesliga, having won just once in their last five games and conceding nine goals in the process. But if the side that ripped through Manchester City at Eastlands shows up, they have a live shot at winning this. Meanwhile Real will be taking aim at history. They have scored in 13 successive Champions League away games and a goal tonight will put them level with the record holders Bayern Munich (2005-2009) and Barcelona (2009-2012).
* It's going to be 0-0, isn't it?
Team news: Mario Götze, who was doubtful for this, starts for Dortmund. Madrid, meanwhile, are without all three of their left-backs, Marcelo, Fábio Coentrão and Alvaro Arbeloa, who all picked up injuries during the international break - which means Michael Essien is shunted into an unfamiliar position in defence.
Dortmund: Weidenfeller, Subotic, Hummels, Piszczek, Schmelzer, Kehl, Bender, Götze, Reus, Grosskreutz, Lewandowski.
Real Madrid: Casillas, Varane, Essien, Pepe, Ramos; Khedira, Alonso, Özil, Di Maria, Ronaldo, Benzema.
Random question to everyone reading this: What's been your favourite German football ground experience? I'll start things off with FC Union Berlin beating Paderhorn 5-4 in September 2009. Nine goals, a raucous but friendly atmosphere, 10 euros to get in, beer on the terraces; there was a lot to like. Australia drawing 2-2 with Croatia the 2006 World Cup was pretty special too; as was Graham Poll's performance.
Before the official Uefa-approval Champions League anthem blasts out ... ... there's a schmultzy version of You'll Never Walk Alone for the crowd to enjoy. Judging by the TV shots, many of the 75,000 in the crowd aren't shy in taking advantage...
We're off Real, kicking from right-to-left, get the game underway, "If I were any good with editing I'd have gotten a Reus v Ozil fight night type trailer for this one," says David Fallon. "Surely this should be an absolute stonker of a game?" Here's hoping.
2 min Real are content to play the ball along the back, happy to feel their way into this. But Dortmund want to harry like alley cats, and win a throw-in in a dangerous area when Essien dawdles and makes a mistake. It comes to nothing, mind.
4 min Nearly a chance there: Ronaldo's flick put Benzema in, but he was ruled offside.
6 min That, however, was a chance. Ronaldo jinked down the left and slashed it across goal but Ozil, six yards out, completely missed his kick. Madrid have started much the better here.
8 min Dortmund are still yet to put together a move worthy of their last two seasons. It's all very patchy.
10 min It's still a little understated, with players slipping all over the place on a surface that's Little Chef fry-up greasy, but Real are the better side.
12 min A Dortmund corner evades everyone. "Barca yesterday, Real Madrid tonight - good to see that a metaphorical 25-years-and-a-golden-watch MBMer like yourself doesn't get stuck with the diddy teams," chirps Ryan Dunne. Hmm. "Re: 80s discobeat and soundtracks generally. Rather than playing about with new interfaces (like the fancy Olympics one) surely providing live, action-appropriate musical soundtracks would be the next logical step for MBMers? You could use Radiohead's Treefingers for dull, Stoke games, have witty themes for particular players and so on. On the downside, this would mean that one couldn't combine following MBMs with watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians." Where do we pay the royalties, Ryan?
14 min Much nicer from Dortmund now. The passing is quick, crisp; the movement quick-cops-are-coming sharp. Kehl even tries his luck from distance, but Casillas palms it away.
16 min A Gotze speculator is blocked by Ramos, I think, before Lewandowski flicks over. This is decent from Dortmund. "My favorite match in a German ground was a German Cup second round tie in fall of 2003 between SC Freiburg and Schalke," says Andy Palmquist. "I was on university semester abroad in Freiburg and enjoyed going to the (then-known-as) Dreisamstadion, a small ground tucked up against the Black Forest. The match was an entertaining back and forth affair that was tightly poised at 3-3 after 90 minutes. Whereupon Freiburg - also known as the Badische Brazilians - went on and smashed in four more goals in the extra 30 minutes to win 7-3. And after which this American spectator was unbelievably hooked on football." Wow, sounds like some game. And Freiberg's a lovely town too...
18 min Madrid are going to make a change here: Modric is stripped off and ready to replace Khedira who has a twanged hamstring. That seems a rather bold move ...
20 min Di Maria skies one following a lovely run, which involved jinking past two players and a YouTube reel 180-degree turn.
22 min Meanwhile Ben Thomas emails in with this German ground experience, "Every time I managed to catch a 1860 game whilst regularly flying back and forth to Munich to see my Bavarian girlfriend of the time. 2005-2006 season. Pretty average team but brilliant fun and still follow them to this day. I'm even drinking a Lowenbrau as i type this." So you watched an average German team and, er, what am I missing?
25 min It's a decent enough game, but it's yet to catch fire. A plus for Real Madrid: Modric has settled nicely into the playmaker role and is pinging it around nicely. A negative: Ronaldo, when played in by Ozil, 12 yards out or so, shoots over the bar.
27 min Gotze's side-footer from from edge of the box is helped over the bar by Casillas, who then flaps at the resulting corner.
29 min Meanwhile Matt Dony emails in. "I don't fully understand the whole Pirate Cloud Torrent malarky, but I'm pretty sure the Internet has negated any need for royalties," he says. "And, sorry Ryan, but some plodding, unreconstructed Manowar would better soundtrack Stoke. I think smug, artsy, takes-themselves-oh-so-seriously Barca would call dibs on Radiohead." Wouldn't Barcelona be something light and lush, with an unexpected edge? Like Isobel Campbell singing with Mark Lanegan?
31 min Just when it looks like a Subotic error might let Benzema in, the defender recovers and 75,000 souls exhale.
33 min It's still a bit new woolly jumper scratchy. "Favourite German experience?" asks Duane Pena. "Right there in the Westfalenstadion, June 10 2006. Trinidad and Tobago vs Sweden. 10 man T&T held off Sweden and Zlatan Ibrahimovich at his profligate best. Shaka Hislop performed like the Berlin Wall in goal and at the end 10,000 odd Trinidad and Tobago fans sang and dance for hours inside and outside the stadium." Bet that was a night. I was instead at England v Paraguay that day. No one was dancing for hours after that ...
GOAL! Dortmund 1-0 Real Madrid (Lewandowski 36) What a mistake from Pepe who plays it straight to Bender (I think), who feeds it to Lewandowski, who smashes it home!
GOAL Dortmund 1-1 Real Madrid (Ronaldo 39) Well, that didn't last long. A long, diagonal pass/thump from Ramos dissects the Dortmund defence and Ronaldo waits for Weidenfeller to charge into no-mans-land for lofting it into an empty net.
41 min Dortmund are pressing again, but a silky interchange of passes down the left ends when Gotze - wrongly - is ruled offside. "Thanks for the mention - what are you missing you wonder?" asks Ben Thomas. "The glory of German second division mid-table mediocrity my friend that's what. Oh and beer." Ah, yes.
44 min Ramos clatters into Schmelzer, much to his disgust, but the referee is happy to keep his cards in his pocket. Don't think we've had one yet.
45 min Casillas saves a Gotze trundler without difficulty. "Whilst I understand you're looking for best German football experiences - I could supply many from my time watching the illustrious SV Babelsberg 03 in Potsdam, just outside of Berlin - world leaders in the ticket+beer+wurst=change from £10 - can I throw in my worst?" asks Michael Wood. Be my guest. "I once took a very nice but staunchly anti-football girl to Berlin's Olympiastadion in an attempt to show her what everyone got so excited about. However I chose to take her to a late January relegation six-pointer between Hertha and Moenchengladbach, in -12 temperatures, in a stadium which, whilst architechturally impressive, lacks any enclosed spaces whatsoever to get out of the cold. Both sides dutifully played out a nil all draw, the only incident being a missed penalty just before half time, which we managed to skip whilst attempting to find somewhere to cower during the interval. Needless to say, both sides eventually departed the Bundesliga, and our relationship didn't even make it to the end of the season..." I'm amazed it lasted that long given you took a girlfriend who does like football to a rubbish game in -12 temperatures ...
Half-time Two minutes of injury time pass without incident and that's half-time. It's not been a thriller, but it did open up when Modric came on and you'd expect more goals here.
46 min We're off again. Meanwhile Holly McGuire makes the following astute observation. "Whenever you try to impress an anti-football friend or lover with football, it will be a 0-0 game in inclement weather. Guaranteed." True.
47 min Dortmund are immediately on the attack but Reus is bumped and buffeted and eventually crowed out. "Shouldn't you get some royalties for having invented the MBM format Sean?" says Gary Naylor. "Oft copied, but never bettered." You should be my agent, Gary ...
48 min Yellow card for Sergio Ramos, who studs Schmelzer in a place where the winter sun's rays rarely reach.
50 min Save from Casillas ... but arguably a bigger miss by Gotze! The ball is pinged around down the Dortmund right, Piszczek crosses, Lewandowski steps over, and Gotze - 12 yards out and central - hits it too close to the Madrid keeper.
52 min Dortmund are pressing here. They sniff blood. "You're an effete bunch of ne'rdowells," splutters Ian Tasker. "Isobel Lanegan! Who the feck's that?"
54 min Real fast break, with Ronaldo hoping to inflict some spite down the left, but Hummels' brave diving header keeps Benzema out.
56 min Now Di Maria drifts dangerously down the left but his shot from an acute angle misses the far post by a foot width. This is very open now. I wonder if it's still 1-1 at 75 minutes and Manchester City are still losing will a peace deal will be signed? Ifs. Ifs. Ifs.
58 min More fine play down the right from Dortmund - one-touch, plenty of befuddling movement - ends when Bender leans back and lobs it over the bar. A wasted opportunity.
60 min Hummels goes in high and late on Ozil, but there's no yellow card. "I've never been to Germany but it sounds like a fun (and cheap) place to watch football, drink beer and eat sausage," says Simon McMahon. "At those prices even the dullest 0-0 in Dortmund seems preferable to a dodgy pie and a 5-4 classic in Dundee." I don't want to sound like an employee of the German tourist board but you should go, it's a fantastic country.
62 min But Xabi Alonso does pick up a yellow for deliberately running into Gotze, who had just diddled him. The resulting free-kick, from 40 yards out in an area of semi-danger, comes to nothing.
GOAL! Dortmund 2-1 Madrid (Schmelzer 64) Dortmund go ahead again! Casillas flapped completely unnecessarily at a cross from the left and only succeeded in pawing it out towards the edge of the 18-yard line ... and Schmelzer smashed it home!
66 min For a millisecond Ozil looked to have a chance of immediate equaliser. But he shallied and shillied on the edge of the area and was crowded out. Modric then shoots over the bar.
68 min Dortmund sub: the excellent Bender off, Gundogan on.
70 min [Guardian reporter dons anorak] Possession stats: Dortmund 44% - 56% Real Madrid.
72 min Real are about to bring on Higuain here, and they certainly need spice and fire to get back into this. Meanwhile Pepe fouls the rampaging Reus by - how to put this? - thrusting out his backside.
74 min Real Madrid sub: Benzema - who has worked hard but not had many chances - off, Higuain on.
76 min Dortmund, who have been the main aggressors this half, have decided to hold onto what they have. Their full-backs aren't charging down the flanks like steam trains any more; and the midfield is just tucking in a bit too. It might not be the worst idea in the world - they might just be able to catch Madrid on the break.
78 min Gotze goes down in the box after being strong-armed by Pepe. That could have easily been given, but the referee shakes his head and play goes on ...
80 min There's delay as a fan charges on the pitch. Fortunately that's his last stupid act of the night as he's quickly bundled off. When play returns a long, raking throughball from Ozil comes this close to landing on Ronaldo's foot.
82 min Dortmund are still in control but a corner comes to nothing. Meanwhile Andy Palmquist emails in: "One more note on watching football in Germany: (at least in Freiburg), during the winter months they serve Glühwein - hot mulled wine with spices. It makes for a nice alternative to pilsner when it's 25 degrees outside." Sounds like my kind of place.
84 min This is sprawling, open, unformed: you sense another goal may arrive at any moment. "My memorable German stadium moment was in Hanover in Euro 1988, and missing Ronnie Whelan's classic goal because of a passing Mexican wave," says Jegs McGregor.
86 min Di Maria scoots another long-ranger over the bar. Ronaldo and Di Maria have both threatened more than they've delivered tonight...
88 min So much for Dortmund sitting this out. They had six attackers in that last attack. Meanwhile Schreiber, the Germany U21 international striker, replaces Gotze. Can they hold on?
90 min This is more open than a Hollywood actress on a shrink's chair. But Real's final pass continues to lack any sort of precision. A superb run from Modric takes out three defenders but Di Maria's cross is blocked. The ball comes back into the area again but Essien does nothing with it on the back post.
90+1 min Dortmund make their final sub: Reus off, Perisic on. We have three additional minutes, can Real salvage an equaliser? It's not looking like it.
90+2 min The clock is ticking, and Real haven't got the ball ...
FULL-TIME Peep! Peep! That's it, it's over! Jurgen Klopp hugs his assistant then his players and with good reason: Dortmund are now top of the group on seven points, one clear of Real. Ajax, who beat Manchester City 3-1, are third on three points, with City last on one point. Thanks for all your emails. Best, Sean