Mainz - Borussia Dortmund Preview: Klopp's men look to bounce back after successive Bundesliga defeats
Die Schwarzgelben desperately need to kick-start their domestic campaign and will have been lifted by their midweek Champions League win over Napoli
By Matthew Rogerson
Borussia Dortmund will hope their impressive record against Mainz can secure them a first win in three Bundesliga matches on Saturday.
The sides meet at the Coface Arena and it is the hosts who are in better domestic form, having won three of their last four top-flight games, with Shinji Okazaki finding the net on four occasions in that time.
However, Mainz have not beaten Saturday's opponents in their last six attempts, as Jurgen Klopp returns to a club where he both played and coached.
Dortmund have stalled somewhat in the Bundesliga recently, though, losing 2-1 at Wolfsburg prior to the international break before going down 3-0 at home to champions Bayern Munich last time out.
Despite injuries to the likes of Marcel Schmelzer, Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic, Dortmund kept their hopes of Champions League qualification alive on Tuesday night with a stirring 3-1 win over Napoli.
Sven Bender sustained a broken nose in that match but was able to finish the game, although Klopp is keen to leave any decisions on selection until as late as possible.
"We will look carefully to know who can cope with the burden [of playing twice in five days]," he mused. "We will deal with the issue of rotation and look for who is fit."
Klopp signed Manuel Friedrich in an attempt to bolster his depleted defence and revealed his pleasure at how the 34-year-old has fitted in at Signal Iduna Park.
"Manny embodies all that makes up our game and what we have shown in recent years," he said. "He has an exceptional character."
Dortmund have dropped points in half of their Bundesliga matches on the road this season, while Mainz have not lost at home in their last three.
Mainz coach Thomas Tuchel has also been handed a boost with the news that Zdenek Pospech is fit despite being taken off in the win over Werder Bremen, while Christian Wetklo is available for a return after serving his suspension.
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Top 3 Predictions
1. FSV Mainz 05 1-3 Borussia Dortmund
- 20.42 %
1. FSV Mainz 05 0-2 Borussia Dortmund
- 14.32 %
1. FSV Mainz 05 1-2 Borussia Dortmund
- 10.33 %
|1. Bundesliga (BUN)||30 Nov 2013||1. FSV Mainz 05 1 - Borussia Dortmund 3|
|1. Bundesliga (BUN)||20 Apr 2013||Borussia Dortmund 2 - 1. FSV Mainz 05 0|
|1. Bundesliga (BUN)||24 Nov 2012||1. FSV Mainz 05 1 - Borussia Dortmund 2|
|1. Bundesliga (BUN)||3 Mar 2012||Borussia Dortmund 2 - 1. FSV Mainz 05 1|
|1. Bundesliga (BUN)||24 Sep 2011||1. FSV Mainz 05 1 - Borussia Dortmund 2|
|1. FSV Mainz 05|
|1 Mar 2014||Bayer Leverkusen 0 - 1. FSV Mainz 05 1||BUN|
|21 Feb 2014||FC Schalke 04 0 - 1. FSV Mainz 05 0||BUN|
|14 Feb 2014||1. FSV Mainz 05 2 - Hannover 96 0||BUN|
|8 Feb 2014||VfL Wolfsburg 3 - 1. FSV Mainz 05 0||BUN|
|1 Feb 2014||1. FSV Mainz 05 2 - SC Freiburg 0||BUN|
|10||Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting||Striker|