The fixture at Signal Iduna Park earlier this season ended in 3-0 win for the home team, with goals from Akanji, Haaland and Hummels.
The Gelsenkirchen natives sit at the bottom of the Bundesliga and risk further damage at the hands of Borussia Dortmund, who are on the back of a fantastic 3-2 comeback victory over Sevilla in the Champions League.
Interim Dortmund coach, Edin Terzic has rallied a cry for victory - speaking ahead of one of Germany’s most anticipated derbies in a press conference, he said: "They are the two most emotional games of the season. The fans want to see the players put it all on the line for the shirt. Everyone knows: you have to win the derby! There is nothing better than a derby victory in the life of a Borussia fan."
Terzic is well aware of Schalke’s position, who are in line for their first relegation to the 2.Bundesliga since 1987/88 Bundesliga season when they finished in the 18th place. Schalke have been relegated only thrice in history (1981, 1983 & 1988) and will look to grab at least a draw, if not a victory – being 9 points below the safety zone.
"I expect them to put aside all their problems to win the game, that they will put it all on the line in the game and be very aggressive. That is how the games have always been in recent years. The importance of the game is clear to everyone. We'll try to bring the three points home," he said.
The Royal Blues enter the clash on the back of a relieving stalemate against Union Berlin. They have now gone goal-less in three matches, with the club’s last goal coming in a 1-1 draw against Werder Bremen three match days ago, thanks to Omar Mascarell’s pinpoint finish in the 18-yard-box to steal a draw.
Michael Zorc, the Dortmund sporting director, made it extremely clear that Die Schwarzengleben are lacking momentum in the league. He commented: "We're lagging behind in the league, we need the points. We need to be 100 percent focused and try to get a performance similar to Wednesday's."
Thomas Delaney, who was left out of the squad for the birth of his first child, is in contention for a starting place for Dortmund. Although Delaney might start, Thorgan Hazard and Dan-Axel Zagadou’s presence will be decided only after the final training session, according to the Dortmund coach.