After an exposing defeat against Leipzig, Borussia Dortmund visit Man City at the Etihad in a match where Sergio Gomez, Akanji, Gündogan and Haaland will face their former clubs.
|Photo: Borussia Dortmund/OneFootball|
The BVB look like a team very prone to be irregular throughout the season, with some high points on their functioning, but with some low ones really worrying.
Their defense was exposed against Leipzig and their attack has not been working as it should, with all the injured players obviously affecting that. In addition, their pressing did not work well, and it was very unorganized.
The losses of Jamie Bynoe-Gittens, Karim Adeyemi, Thorgan Hazard, Donyell Malen and Mahmoud Dahoud have hurt Dortmund and haven’t allowed Terzic to form a solid block, limiting the variations the German coach can make.
The trio of Malen, Hazard, and Adeyemi recovered in time for the clash, but it's still a doubt how many quality minutes each one can give to Dortmund
Thus, it's almost sure Terzic will repeat the starting XI, mostly because he won’t have too many options to choose from if the returning players can't play a good amount of minutes.
Adding Emre Can, who still has not started a match this season, to the midfield seems complicated, although it could be an option to switch to a more defensive 4-3-3.
Gio Reyna in exchange for Marius Wolf could be also an option, but with Sergio Gomez looking almost certain to start for City, the German winger looks like the best option to attack the former BVB player.
The Return of Haaland
Not only Haaland, Manchester City will have 4 players in the squad that are former BVB players.
Pep Guardiola's side returns after a break week after their game against Tottenham was postponed due to the passing of the great Queen Elizabeth II.
Man City's prior match was their clash against Sevilla on Matchday 1, where they slaughtered the Hispalenses.
With several missing players on their defensive line (Stones, Laporte and Kyle Walker), the back four will surely be formed by Cancelo, Akanji, Dias, and Gomez.
Guardiola will have his best men from the midfield upwards. Rodri, Gündogan and de Bruyne look set to start in midfield, with Grealish, Mahrez, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden battling for the two wing spots. Erling Haaland will, of course, lead the charge.
• Dortmund really need to improve their defense from the last game.
• They'll face an opponent they know very well both in Man City and Haaland.
• Dortmund need to take advantage of every small chance they get, as well as set
• The Black and Yellows will have to hold their lines very tight and be very active with the defensive switches. They tried to press high against Leipzig and it was a disaster, so they shouldn’t try it against The Citizens.
• It will be interesting to see how Dortmund behave in the first match of the season where they won't really have possession.
• Marco Reus and Julian Brandt will be key to help keep the defensive block as well as helping Jude Bellingham and Salih Özcan with the construction of the attack.