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Several factors seem to be stacking up against BVB, but their general is confident he can lead his troops to a tough victory on Saturday...

Borussia Dortmund may sit fourth in the Bundesliga, but coach Juergen Klopp has warned his side not to expect an easy match against mid-table Hoffenheim, who are still reeling from a home defeat by Koeln last weekend.

Die Hoffe were defeated 2-0 last Saturday, and Klopp believes that such a result will only make his side’s life harder, indicating to BVB’s official website that he expected “the opposite of an easy game”.

This assertion was echoed by club president Dr Reinhard Rauball, who said: “We know from boxing that a battered opponent is often twice as dangerous.”

Adding to Klopp’s worries is an especially inclement injury situation, which will see his defence particularly stretched on their right side. Marcel Schmelzer’s suspension is set to provide Julian Koch with an opportunity to make his first start for the senior side.

“Julian has the second-most experiences in this position in this club,” the coach said of the 19-year-old, who has only played 19 minutes of top level action previously.

With 360 minutes of the season remaining, BVB sit just two points behind Bayer Leverkusen, who occupy third spot, which brings with it the final Champions League qualifying berth.

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