The biggest match of the Bundesliga season thus far looms large this weekend. Borussia Dortmund against Bayern Munich in Der Klassiker at the Westfalenstadion with just one point separating the two sides at the top of the table after 13 match weeks. Bayern is coming off of a 1-0 win over Arminia Bielefeld after losing to Augsburg the week prior while Dortmund is coming off of a 3-1 win at VfL Wolfsburg, which was marked by the early return of Erling Haaland. Prior to the Wolfsburg win, Dortmund had floundered against Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League and they had also suffered their third loss of the season to RB Leipzig just before the November international break.
Saturday’s installment of Der Klassiker is a massive opportunity for Marco Rose’s side to leapfrog Bayern into the top spot in the table, but he knows that his side will have to show massive improvements in order to do so. They’ve only kept one clean sheet in the Bundesliga this season,, which will certainly have Robert Lewandowski licking his lips, and if recent history repeats itself, Bayern will score more than once against Dortmund.
“Our chance is there and we want to seize it. But of course we also know that we can only pose a threat to Bayern in the long run if we improve a few things,” Rose said looking ahead to Saturday’s massive clash (Abendzeitung).
Conceding early as they did on Saturday against Wolfsburg is certainly something they’ll want to avoid against Bayern.
Dortmund Injury Update
Much like Bayern due to their coronavirus quarantines, Dortmund have also been missing some key players recently. Haaland marked his return to action against Wolfsburg with a goal, returning much earlier from his injury than was initially anticipated. Raphael Gurreiro is also set to return to the lineup for Bayern’s visit after missing Dortmund’s win at Wolfsburg due to a muscular problem. The Portuguese wing back had also missed out on Dortmund’s Champions League loss in Lisbon last week (Ruhr Nachrichten).
Jude Bellingham missed out on Dortmund’s win at Wolfsburg with a knee problem sustained during the Champions League match against Sporting Lisbon, and he remains a doubt for der Klassiker, though that could change before Saturday. They are planning on having him return to training midweek to asses where he’s at.
All of this comes on the heels of Dortmund welcoming back Mahmoud Dahoud and Marius Wolf in addition to Haaland for the Wolfsburg match.