Football: Dortmund return to form

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The European champions, Borussia Dortmund, shook off a looming crisis with perfect timing by outclassing Sparta Prague 4-1 on Wednesday in a match reminiscent of last season's feats.

With two goals from the Swiss striker Stephane Chapuisat and one apiece from Heiko Herrlich and Jorg Heinrich, the German side showed the kind of class which helped them upset mighty Juventus 3-1 in last May's final. However, back home, Dortmund have slumped to a poor 12th place in the 18-team Bundesliga after a 3-2 home defeat by 1860 Munich last weekend.

"I just can't explain what happened," said Borussia's new Italian coach, Nevio Scala, who was reported to be at risk of losing his job. "We had played badly in our last four matches and, all of a sudden, we played brilliantly."