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Germany: Bundesliga
2 - 2
(0 - 1)
Schalke 04
M. Bülter (50), K. Karaman (79)
N. Schlotterbeck (38), R. Guerreiro (60)

Terzic reacts to Haller's insistence on a start: "We still need goals."

By Peter Weis   @PeterVicey

BVB trainer Edin Terzic responded supportively, yet with some calculation, to comments by lead-striker Sebastien Haller that he "would not accept a place on the bench" in the upcoming Revierderby. 
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Photo: Borussia Dortmund
For all the hype surrounding Sebastien Haller's comeback from testicular cancer, the ultra-talented Ivorian striker has still only scored one goal for his new club this season. After netting a tally in the matchday 19 rout over shorthanded Freiburg, Haller has actually gone six straight competitive matches (four starts) without a goal.

As it stands now, Haller's one-time replacement Anthony Modeste has netted more goals (two) for the BVB this year. In an interview with Sky Germany on Friday, Haller sought to put any and all notions that he might be benched for the upcoming Revierderby to rest. Haller emphasized that he absolutely needed to be on the pitch in an important match such as this one.

"I can't do that, I wouldn't accept that," the 28-year-old said of a potential benching during his interview, "The coach gave me a few breaks in January [actually early February]. That's fine. But not in the derby. There you want to play, score a goal, and win."

Dortmund head-coach Edin Terzic reacted to the comments at his Friday pre-match presser. The Dortmund gaffer gave no indication that Haller would get anything but his wish. Lauding the lead-striker's enthusiasm, Terzic said it would be important to place Haller in the starting XI "in order to build him up to his top form again."

Terzic nevertheless also stressed that he and his coaching staff still made decisions about the starting XI based on factors such as "freshness" and "workload". Moreover, Terzic felt the need to bring up the fact that his squad was still missing a reliable scorer. Goals and assists are spread out among the squad, but the lack of a go-to-target man led to, among other things, Tuesday's Champions' League elimination.

"If we want to achieve our objectives, we need goals," Terzic noted, "Our current position in the table ordinarily requires a striker who has already scored 15 or 20 goals. "We just don't have that and that also causes us concern. That's what we lacked in London."

"We want to support him [Haller] as a collective staff," Terzic continued, "We're in close contact with him every day to see how he feels. We're not going to forget the path he's travelled this year. It's important for him to be on the pitch in order to get better. How else? We want to back him."

With Julian Brandt ruled out of the coming fixture and Youssoufa Moukoko still on the long-term injured reserve list, it looks to be the case that projected starter Giovanni Reyna will be the leading scorer in the starting XI. The American youngster looked rather rusty against Chelsea on Tuesday after not logging a single minute in four successive matches.

Reyna has still netted five league goals in the current campaign.

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