Bayern Munich - Borussia Dortmund Preview: Hosts can kill off champions' title hopes
The visitors go into this fixture 11 points behind their rivals, but know that three points on Saturday would keep their aspirations of a third straight Bundesliga alive
By Enis Koylu
Lahm, Dante, Badstuber, Alaba
Javi Martinez, Schweinsteiger
Muller, Kroos, Ribery
Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer
Kuba, Gotze, Reus
Bayern Munich shuffled the pack for the trip to Freiburg on Wednesday, leaving out Bastian Schweinsteiger. However, the Germany midfilder can be expected to slot back into the team after a well-deserved rest at the expense of Xherdan Shaqiri.
That will see him parter Javi Martinez in the deep-lying positions, with Toni Kroos shifting forward into the No.10 role. Elsewhere, coach Jupp Heynckes will have to make a decision on who will lead the line. Mario Gomez scored in the 5-0 win over Hannover last week, but was largely quiet during his hour against Freiburg.
Should the veteran coach decide not to pick the Germany star, either Mario Mandzukic or Claudio Pizarro will start in his absence. Luiz Gustavo, however, remains sidelined with a ligament problem, while Jerome Boateng is lacking fitness.
Meanwhile, Borussia Dortmund also rested a couple of players for the game against Fortuna Dusseldorf on Tuesday. Mats Hummels sat out the Ruhr derby, but will slot back into the heart of defence at the expense of Felipe Santana.
Ilkay Gundogan also missed the Signal Iduna Park clash with a minor injury, but could return unless boss Jurgen Klopp elects to start with two defensive-minded midfielders in Sebastian Kehl and Sven Bender. Finally, Mario Gotze will start, with Kevin Grosskreutz the most likely to drop to the bench.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Bayern Munich sealed their place as the Herbstmeister - the winter champions on Wednesday with a 2-0 win over Freiburg at the Mage Solar Stadion.
- Jupp Heynckes has guided teams to second-placed finishes, behind Dortmund, for the last two seasons. His Leverkusen team ended 2010-11 seven points behind the champions, and Bayern trailed BVB by eight at the end of last season.
- The Roten's sporting director, Matthias Sammer, spent six years at the Westfalenstadion as a player, winning the Champions League and Ballon d'Or during his time there.
- Borussia Dortmund have won all of their last four Bundesliga games against Bayern.
- Mats Hummels began his career as a youth at the Allianz Arena, while Sven Bender, Mario Gotze and Moritz Leinter all hail from Bavaria.
- Since losing to Schalke on October 20, BVB are unbeaten in the league, emerging victorious over Bavarian opponents in Augsburg and Greuther Furth since.
Top 3 Predictions
Bayern Munich 2-1 Borussia Dortmund
- 15.74 %
Bayern Munich 1-2 Borussia Dortmund
- 15.74 %
Bayern Munich 2-0 Borussia Dortmund
- 10.09 %
|Germany - 1. Bundesliga (BUN)||23 Nov 2013||Borussia Dortmund 0 - Bayern Munich 3|
|Germany - Super Cup (GERS)||27 Jul 2013||Borussia Dortmund 4 - Bayern Munich 2|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||25 May 2013||Borussia Dortmund 1 - Bayern Munich 2|
|Germany - 1. Bundesliga (BUN)||04 May 2013||Borussia Dortmund 1 - Bayern Munich 1|
|Germany - DFB-Pokal (GERC)||27 Feb 2013||Bayern Munich 1 - Borussia Dortmund 0|
|10 Dec 2013||Bayern Munich 2 - Manchester City 3||UCL|
|07 Dec 2013||Werder Bremen 0 - Bayern Munich 7||BUN|
|04 Dec 2013||FC Augsburg 0 - Bayern Munich 2||GERC|
|30 Nov 2013||Bayern Munich 2 - Eintracht Braunschweig 0||BUN|
|27 Nov 2013||CSKA Moscow 1 - Bayern Munich 3||UCL|
Times In SAST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed