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Bundesliga

  • March 30, 2013
  • • 14:30
  • • Mercedes-Benz-Arena, Stuttgart
  • Referee: D. Aytekin
  • • Attendance: 60000
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Stuttgart-Borussia Dortmund Preview: Jurgen Klopp’s side looking to maintain their grip on second place

Stuttgart-Borussia Dortmund Preview: Jurgen Klopp’s side looking to maintain their grip on second place

Bongarts

As the title is now within Bayern’s grasp, the reigning champions will hope to take three points from mid-table Stuttgart as they try to finish runners-up

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

STUTTGART

Ulreich
Sakai, Tasci, Niedermeier, Boka
Gentner
Harnik, Holzhauser, Okazaki, Traore
Ibisevic
BORUSSIA DORTMUND

Weidenfeller
Piszczek, Subotic, Santana, Schmelzer
Gundogan, Bender
Blaszczykowski, Gotze, Reus
Lewandowski

Borussia Dortmund went into the international break on the back of a 5-1 trouncing of Freiburg and will look to pick up where they left off when they visit Stuttgart in one of Saturday’s early kick-offs.

Sven Bender, who missed Germany’s match against Kazakhstan after coming down with the flu, has recovered and will start alongside Ilkay Gundogan in the centre of midfield. Defender Mats Hummels remains sidelined with an ankle injury, however, and will once again be replaced by Felipe Santana.

Winger Jakub Blaszczykowski has had some recent discomfort with an adductor muscle, and while he still may start at Mercedes-Benz Arena, Kevin Grosskreutz is ready should a stand-by be required. If so, Mario Gotze would move over to the right with Marco Reus sliding into the middle.

Stuttgart come into Saturday’s match without full-back Cristian Molinaro and defensive midfielder William Kvist, both of whom are suspended, and striker Cacau is still recovering from knee surgery.

Coach Bruno Labbadia may also have to make do without midfielders Johan Audel and Tunay Torun, both of whom have minor knocks.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Borussia Dortmund have won only three of their previous six Bundesliga matches and currently sit 20 points back of leaders Bayern Munich with eight rounds left to play.
  • Dortmund’s 5-1 win at home to Freiburg on March 16 represented the third time this season they had hit a quintuple, having previously accomplished the feat against Borussia Monchengladbach and Werder Bremen.
  • Dortmund have five players (Marco Reus, Jakub Blaszczykowski, Lukasz Piszczek, Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski (pictured,right)) with at least five Bundesliga assists so far this season.
  • Stuttgart have won just two of their last 10 matches — a streak dating all the way back to mid-December. They are presently 12th in the standings.
  • Stuttgart have kept just three clean sheets since the first week of November.
  • The last four matches between these two sides all ended in draws, including a 4-4 thriller at Dortmund a year ago.

Players to watch

M. Harnik

Position: Attacker

Games: 6

  • 1
  • 0
  • 0

He scored for Austria during the week and has bagged five Bundesliga goals so far this season. But his most important contributions are made on the right flank, where he wins his battles more often than not and provides quality service for Vedad Ibisevic. Dortmund left-back Marcel Schmelzer will be in for a long night.

M. Götze

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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  • 0
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He is becoming the player everyone thought he would be before a serious injury in the first half of last season set his development back for several months. He has excelled in Shinji Kagawa’s old role just behind Robert Lewandowski, and at 20, is already one of the most exciting players in German football.

Editor's Prediction

Stuttgart’s woeful defensive record doesn’t bode well for them, especially given the firepower Dortmund will bring to the match. No doubt the guests will be thinking ahead to next week’s Champions League quarter-final away to Malaga, but they should still have little trouble taking all three points here.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Stuttgart

Borussia Dortmund

Wins
0
2
3
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

VfB Stuttgart 1893 STU
VfB Stuttgart 1893 Stuttgart
Draw
BV Borussia 09 Dortmund BVB
BV Borussia 09 Dortmund Borussia Dortmund
33%
55%

Top 3 Predictions

VfB Stuttgart 1893 STU
1 - 1
BV Borussia 09 Dortmund BVB
VfB Stuttgart 1893 STU
1 - 3
BV Borussia 09 Dortmund BVB
VfB Stuttgart 1893 STU
1 - 2
BV Borussia 09 Dortmund BVB

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