There were enough jittery moments in the German champions' defence either side of Lars Ricken's goal on the hour in the quarter-final second leg in the Abbe-Deschamps stadium for Ferguson to take heart.
Most heartening of all from United's point of view was the booking after the interval of Matthias Sammer, his second in the competition, that will put the European Footballer of the Year out of the first leg.
Looking his usual authoritative self, Sammer had marshalled the Dortmund defence when it came under most pressure during the fraught early stages. Clearly not recovered from their shattering 4-1 defeat at Stuttgart on Saturday, Dortmund might have caved in to either Antoine Sibierski's wickedly deflected shot or Alain Goma's attempt from the lively Bernard Diomede's ensuing corner. Already lacking the suspended Stefan Reuter in defence, Dortmund survived several difficult moments.
Not until midway through the first half was Lionel Charbonnier in the Auxerre goal troubled by Karl-Heinz Riedle, who met Stephane Chapuisat's free kick with a downward header. The height of Dortmund's ambitions at that stage seemed to be a goalless draw, but they improved on that when Lars Ricken shot home after Chapuisat had expertly laid off Jorg Heinrich's low cross to him. He was helped by a deflection.
Auxerre (3-1-3-3): Charbonnier; Goma, Danjou, West; Silvestre; Lamouchi, Violeau, Saib; Sibierski, Laslandes, Diomede (Lepaul, 64). Substitutes not used: Cool (gk), Zelic, Tasfaout, Deniaud.
Borussia Dortmund (1-3-3-1-2): Klos; Sammer; Heinrich, Kohler, Kree; Ricken (Feiersinger, 79), Paulo Sousa (Herrlich, 87), Lambert; Moller; Riedle, Chapuisat (Zorc, 79). Substitutes not used: De Beer (gk), Tanko.
Referee: G Benko (Austria).Reuse content