RB Leipzig trainer Domenico Tedesco had to address some regrettable absences in his own squad at a Thursday presser.
When it came to the potential absence of his opponent's top player, however, the 36-year-old head coach made sure to emphasize that he wasn't betting on it.
Ahead of what shall be a very challenging month for his team, Tedesco emphasized the importance of his team enjoying their football.
A rough week of injury news leaves RB Leipzig gaffer Domenico Tedesco without striker Yussuf Poulsen and versatile attacking midfielder Amadou Haidara. Missing offensive actors never counts as good news, particularly not when facing Borussia Dortmund. Tedesco did have some good news to impart with regard to two players returning from international duty.
Keeper and captain Peter Gulacsi should be fit enough to play despite sustaining a slight injury whilst playing for the Hungarian national team. USMNT captain Tyler Adams, who's defensive midfield prowess might come in handy, will definitely make the bench squad. Tedesco explicitly noted that was planning with the potentially jet-lagged American.
Insofar as Tedesco's plan for the opponent were concerned, the RB head-coach made clear that he wouldn't act on the assumption that Erling Haaland would be unavailable for Dortmund. Asked to comment on Marco Rose's comments earlier in the day, Tedesco indicated that he took nothing for granted.
"It's an important match," Tedesco noted, "He will play. That's what we're preparing for."
The relatively new trainer of the German Red Bulls has managed to get the Saxons up to fourth place in the Bundesliga table after the team concluded the first half of the season well out of the Champions' League places. As much ground as the team has made up, Tedesco's work remains far from finished.
A very disappointing performance in a 0-0 draw with Frankfurt just before the international break led many to question how much credit Jesse Marsch's successor deserves. A win against one of RB's supposed fellow Champions' League class opponents may be considered a direct necessity in order to silence such critics.
The month of April poses asks several questions of Tedesco's Leipzig. The team must resume Europa League play with quarterfinal legs against Atalanta Bergamo. In addition to Dortmund, Hoffenheim and Leverkusen are ahead in the league schedule. RB then plays Union Berlin both in the league and Pokal to round out the month.
"We haven't achieved anything thus far," the club gaffer noted, "We're really looking forward to this month. Everyone who plays and loves football is looking forward to it. The factor of having fun [with out football] becomes very important now."
|10||T. Hazard ↪74|
|28||A. Witsel ↪61|
|39||M. Wolf ↪61|
|11||M. Reus (C) ↪74|
|21||D. Malen ↩61 ⚽|
|7||G. Reyna ↩74|
|8||M. Dahoud ↩61|
|19||J. Brandt ↩74|
|1||P. Gulácsi (C)|
|2||M. Simakan ↪78|
|22||N. Mukiele ↪68|
|27||K. Laimer ⚽⚽|
|44||K. Kampl ↪68|
|25||Daniel Olmo ⚽ ↪89|
|18||C. Nkunku ⚽|
|33||A. Silva ↪78|
|10||E. Forsberg ↩68|
|38||H. Novoa Ramos ↩89|
|16||L. Klostermann ↩68|
|23||M. Halstenberg ↩78|
|17||D. Szoboszlai ↩78|