Marin Pongracic can look forward to playing an important role in the Borussia Dortmund team this season, according to his head coach Marco Rose. - © BEAUTIFUL SPORTS/Zeising via www.imago-images.de/imago images/Beautiful Sports
Marin Pongracic can look forward to playing an important role in the Borussia Dortmund team this season, according to his head coach Marco Rose. - © BEAUTIFUL SPORTS/Zeising via www.imago-images.de/imago images/Beautiful Sports
bundesliga

Marin Pongracic tipped for lead Borussia Dortmund role by Marco Rose

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Borussia Dortmund's summer signing Marin Pongracic has been tipped to make a major impact at the club by the man who convinced him to join from Wolfsburg, head coach Marco Rose.

The Croatian central defender may not have been a regular starter for the Wolves, but Rose worked with him during their Red Bull Salzburg days and believes he can tap into the 23-year-old's potential and turn him into a Bundesliga regular at BVB during his season-long loan.

"I expect him to fulfil his potential," Rose told Kicker. "I know it and I know how good it is. He can definitely play in a back three, and if anything, we are now very well covered in this area.

"We were looking for somebody in this position and I know what he can do, and now he's got to try to show that here at Borussia. We're going to help him, but I'm also going to be demanding of him."

Pongracic has yet to make his first competitive appearance in a black and yellow shirt, although he did take full advantage of the fact Manuel Akanji was on international duty with Switzerland and Mats Hummels is injured to impress in a 90-minute run-out across two friendly matches last week.

He scored one goal, created another and led the Dortmund defence like an old master in a 4-0 win over SpVgg Hagen 1911 and 8-0 win over SV Hohenlimburg.

"I know him so he didn't surprise me today," said Rose, who added that his lack of action in Wolfsburg was more due to misfortune. "He got ill and he had lots of injuries," he added. "Things didn't quite work out for him at Wolfsburg."

Mats Hummels (2nd l.) and Manuel Akanji (c.) are current first-choice central defenders at Dortmund, but Marin Pongracic can expect to get his chances this season. - Frank Hoermann / SVEN SIMON via www.imago-images.de/imago images/Sven Simon

With his first outing under his belt, Pongracic will now give Rose a welcome headache coming into a busy period of fixtures.

Dortmund travel to Bayer Leverkusen at the weekend before kicking off their UEFA Champions League campaign at Besiktas the following Wednesday.

"We're going to have lots of games now," said Rose. "And nobody has mentioned that maybe Manu [Akanji] might need a rest."

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