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Hoffenheim vs. Borussia Dortmund preview: Dortmund targeting top spot

By Ben Sully   @SullyBen

With title rivals Union Berlin and Bayern Munich set to face one another on Sunday, Borussia Dortmund will have the chance to move to the top of the Bundesliga table when they go head-to-head with Hoffenheim on Saturday.
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Photo: Borussia Dortmund/OneFootball


Pellegrino Matarazzo has been unable to instigate an upturn in fortunes in his first two games as Hoffenheim boss. After losing 3-1 to Leverkusen in his first game in charge, Matarazzo looked set to oversee a goalless draw against Augsburg last weekend. However, an 88th-minute strike from Fredrik Jensen condemned Hoffenheim to a fifth consecutive defeat in all competitions.

Since beating Schalke 3-0 on October 14, Die Kraichgauer have picked up just two points from 11 Bundesliga matches, leaving them just outside the bottom three on goal difference.

In that 11-game winless run, Hoffenheim have conceded more than two goals in nine matches, which will be a cause for concern ahead of Saturday's meeting with a Dortmund side who are the second-highest scorers in the Bundesliga.

They have only managed to pick up 11 points from as many home league games this season - only basement side Schalke have a worse home record.
Team News

Hoffenheim are expected to be without the services of Jacob Bruun Larsen, Robert Skov and Grischa Prömel. There are also doubts over the availability of Kasper Dolberg and Kevin Vogt.

Borussia Dortmund

In contrast to their hosts, Dortmund are enjoying an impressive run of form, winning all eight of their competitive matches in 2023. They extended their winning run with a 4-1 home victory over Hertha BSC last weekend thanks to goals from Karim Adeyemi, Donyell Malen, Marco Reus and Julian Brandt.

Dortmund are one of three teams level on 43 points at the top of the Bundesliga table - alongside Union and Bayern. Due to their superior goal difference, the Bavarians remain in pole position, but Edin Terzić's side will have the opportunity to climb into first position, with Bayern and Union set to face off at the Allianz Arena on Sunday.

Die Schwarzgelben have fared well in recent meetings with Hoffenheim, winning their last three Bundesliga games against Saturday's opponents. A 16th-minute strike proved to be enough to help Dortmund claim a narrow 1-0 win when the two sides met at Signal Iduna Park in September. However, after scoring 19 goals across their six league wins in 2023, they may be targeting a sizable victory this time around.
Team News

Julian Ryerson is reportedly set to miss out through injury. The full-back is joined on the sidelines by Julien Duranville, Youssoufa Moukoko, Abdoulaye Kamara and Mateu Morey. Meanwhile, Adeyemi is also unavailable after sustaining a thigh injury last weekend.

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