Borussia Dortmund have the chance to leapfrog Bayern Munich at the Bundesliga’s summit when they welcome the reigning champions to Signal Iduna Park on Saturday evening.
Marco Rose is yet to drop a single Bundesliga point on home soil since taking charge of Dortmund in the summer. They are the only team with a 100% home record in Europe’s top five leagues. Although, Bayern did triumph at BVB’s stadium in the DFL Supercup as recently as August.
Nevertheless, here’s the lineup Rose may deploy to maintain their stellar home form.
Gregor Kobel (GK) – For a team whose goalkeepers conspired to concede around four goals more than the average shot-stopper last season (per FBref), the swift adaptation of their summer arrival has been warmly welcomed.
Thomas Meunier (RB) – One of the senior figures in a squad that lurches between youth and experience (with little in between) the Belgium international has scarcely come close to filling the void Achraf Hakimi left behind.
Manuel Akanji (CB) – BVB’s only ever-present this season offers a shred of pace in a slow defence but doesn’t cover the ground with anywhere near the same rapidity as his mental arithmetic.
Mats Hummels (CB) – In a backline that has been decidedly average overall, Dortmund have conceded half as many league goals in games Hummels has started this season.
Raphael Guerreiro (LB) – After a glut of goals to open the season (three in the space of four league games), Guerreiro is set for a return following an injury-induced absence in nine of Borussia’s last ten matches.
Axel Witsel (CM) – A return to fitness for some of Dortmund’s lesser spotted midfielders gave Rose the chance to rest his midfield screen ahead of the biggest game of the season.
Mahmoud Dahoud (CM) – Injury has limited the Germany international to just one start across the entirety of October and November but the injury status of Jude Bellingham may ensure a more positive beginning in December.
Marco Reus (AM) – Dortmund’s captain lives for these titanic tussles, directly contributing to a whopping 30 goals in 31 appearances against Bayern Munich in his career (18 goals, 12 assists).
Julian Brandt (RW) – The 25-year-old didn’t deliver the most emphatic of war cries in the build up to the fixture, limply offering: “We’re taking a lot of care that it doesn’t go like it did in the last two years.”
Erling Haaland (ST) – The Bundesliga’s fastest ever half-centurion (50 goals in as many games) has lost all five of his meetings with Bayern, but – of course – still scored four goals in those defeats.
Donyell Malen (LW) – Coming into the contest on the back of three consecutive appearances with a goal, Malen may finally be finding his groove in the Ruhr region.
You can read 90min’s preview of Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich here
You can read Bayern Munich’s predicted lineup here.