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Borussia Dortmund vs. Bayern Munich preview: Der Klassiker

By Ben Sully   @SullyBen

On Saturday evening, Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich will go toe-to-toe in one of the most highly-anticipated games in the German football calendar.

Dortmund's Signal Iduna Park will play host to the first Klassiker of the season, with both teams looking to protect their unbeaten record in the Bundesliga.
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Photo: Sandro Halank, Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA 4.0

Borussia Dortmund

Having picked up 21 points from their nine league games, Dortmund are sitting in fourth position in the Bundesliga table. They will go into the Klassiker two points adrift of their opponents, who currently occupy second position. Dortmund will carry significant momentum into Saturday’s contest after putting together a 12-game unbeaten league run since losing 4-2 to Bayern in April.

They were forced to work hard to extend their unbeaten streak in last weekend’s away meeting with Frankfurt. Strikes from Marcelo Sabitzer and Youssoufa Moukoko saw Dortmund fight back from two goals down, before Frankfurt retook the lead through Farès Chaïbi. However, Julian Brandt made sure his side left Deutsch Bank Park with a point, netting an 82nd-minute equaliser to round off the scoring in an entertaining 3-3 draw.

They followed that result with a narrow victory in Wednesday’s DFB-Pokal meeting with Hoffenheim. A 43rd-minute effort from Marco Reus proved decisive, as Dortmund held firm to claim a 1-0 win and advance to the third round.

The midweek victory also extended Dortmund’s unbeaten home run to 26 matches (W20, D6) – a record they will look to defend against Bayern this weekend. Die Schwarzgelben are hoping to beat the Bavarians for the first time since the 2019 DFL-Supercup, while a win would also represent their first league victory over Bayern since November 2018.
Team News

Terzic is confident that Marius Wolf will be fit despite picking up a knock against Hoffenheim in midweek. The Dortmund boss also stated that Emre Can is set to return to team training ahead of Saturday's encounter. While there is a chance that Can could be involved, the hosts are expected to be without Julien Duranville and Mateu Morey.

Bayern Munich

In contrast to their hosts, Bayern experienced a disastrous outing in their midweek cup tie against third-tier Saarbrucken. The contest looked to be heading towards extra-time after Thomas Müller’s opener was cancelled out by Patrick Sontheimer. However, there was to be late drama, as Marcel Gaus netted a 96th-minute winner to produce a major upset.

After losing a competitive game for just the second time this season, Thomas Tuchel will have to pick his team up for Saturday’s clash against his former club. Like their hosts, Bayern are also yet to lose in the league this season, having won seven and drawn two of their nine Bundesliga matches.

In last weekend’s league outing, the Bavarians demolished Darmstadt 8-0 in a game where three red cards were shown in the first period. Joshua Kimmich was given his marching orders in the fourth minute, before Klaus Gjasula and Matej Maglica were sent off for the newly-promoted side. With the numerical advantage in their favour, Bayern moved through the gears in the second half, as Harry Kane netted a hat-trick alongside braces from Leroy Sané and Jamal Musiala.

Saturday’s visitors will be confident of maintaining their unbeaten start to the Bundesliga campaign, having fared well in recent meetings with Dortmund. The perennial champions have won nine and drawn one of their previous 10 head-to-head matches. The only draw in that period took place in last season’s meeting at Signal Iduna Park after they gave up a two-goal lead to share the spoils.

With two points separating them from Leverkusen, Bayern will be determined to avoid dropping any points on Saturday, as they look to keep pace with Xabi Alonso’s side.
Team News

Tuchel has revealed that he is yet to decide whether Dayot Upamecano and Leon Goretzka will start against Dortmund, as the pair look to prove their fitness ahead of Saturday's clash.

The visitors will be unable to call upon Matthijs de Ligt, Kingsley Coman, Tarek Buchmann and Gabriel Marusic. Meanwhile, Kimmich is suspended after being sent off against Darmstadt last weekend.

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