LEIPZIG, Germany (Reuters) - Borussia Dortmund scored three times in the second half, twice with Erling Haaland and once with Jadon Sancho, to beat hosts RB Leipzig 3-1 on Saturday and close the gap to the top spots in the Bundesliga.
After a toothless first half Dortmund, who have now won both league games in 2021, improved after the break, taking the lead when Halaand charged down the wing and Marco Reus flicked his cross on with his back heel for Sancho to fire in.
The England international has now scored for the second consecutive game after failing to find the back of the net in the first 13 league matches of the campaign.
The visitors came close to a second goal in the 65th but Haaland's powerful shot was tipped onto the crossbar by keeper Peter Gulacsi.
Second-placed Leipzig, who had kept a clean sheet in their previous four league games, responded with a chance of their own two minutes later as Dani Olmo hit the post with his shot.
But Haaland got onto the score sheet, heading in a Sancho cross at the far post after launching the move himself in the 72nd minute.
The Norway international grabbed a second goal six minutes from the end when he was sent through by Reus to round Gulacsi before Leipzig scored in the 90th with Alexander Sorloth.
"Everyone knows that today this was an extremely important game for us," said Dortmund's Emre Can, who came on after half an hour for the injured Axel Witsel.
"It was a game that would tell us which way our season will be going. It was decisive to win it. The last few weeks have not been easy."
Dortmund had won only one of their last five games of 2020 before December's two-week winter break.
"Now we want to launch our attack," Germany international Can said.
Dortmund are fourth in the standings on 28 points, five off leaders Bayern Munich, who lost 3-2 at Borussia Moenchengladbach on Friday. Leipzig, who suffered their first home loss of the season, are second on 31.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Christian Radnedge)