Hoffenheim - Borussia Dortmund Preview: Bayern slip gives champions chance to close gap

Jurgen Klopp's men will be hoping for a few early Christmas presents and a much-needed win as they prepare to take on the league's leakiest defence at the Rhein Neckar Arena

Beck, Delpierre, Compper, Johnson
Williams, Rudy, Salihovic
Volland, Derdiyok

Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer
Gundogan, Leitner
Kuba, Gotze, Reus

Borussia Dortmund go into their game against Hoffenheim this Sunday knowing that they have the opportunity to cut Bayern Munich's advantage at the top of the table down to 12 points after the runaway leaders were held at home by Borussia Monchengladbach on Friday evening.

Dortmund are expected to name an unchanged side for their visit to Rhein Neckar Arena, despite their frustrating 3-2 home defeat to Wolfsburg last weekend.

Jurgen Klopp can once again call on the services of Marcel Schmelzer after the it was decided that his questionable sending off in the last round did not merit a suspension.

Moritz Leitner is also expected to keep his place alongside Ilkay Gundogan in midfield as both Sven Bender and Sebastian Kehl are still sidelined with groin and knee problems, respectively.

The hosts meanwhile have no fresh injury or suspension worries as they prepare to take on the German champions.

Hoffenheim lost their first game under the guidance Frank Kramer against Hamburg last weekend, following the dismissal of coach Markus Babbel and the interim trainer will be hoping for better fortune against Dortmund with his side currently sitting six points adrift of safety in the relegation play-off spot.

  • Hoffenheim have the leakiest defence in the entire Bundesliga having already conceded 38 goals this season, nine more than any other side in the league.
  • The side's fans have had little to cheer about at Rhein Neckar Arena of late with the team losing all of its last three home games.
  • The Sinsheim outfit has lost just twice in their last eight league games with BVB.
  • Borussia Dortmund are in danger of going four league games without a win on Sunday, something they haven't suffered since September 2009.
  • The German champions have already lost 3 matches this season, the same number they lost in their entire 2011/12 campaign.
  • Coach Jurgen Klopp suggested full-back Marcel Schmelzer (pictured, right) should have been awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace after the way he conducted himself after being wrongly dismissed in their 3-2 defeat to Wolfsburg last weekend.