Dortmund - Matchday 2’s action in the Bundesliga winds down with a classic case of David vs. Goliath as Bundesliga newboys Eintracht Braunschweig travel to Signal Iduna Park to face Borussia Dortmund on Sunday evening (kick-off 17.30 CET).
Back from injury
After defeat in their opening game of the campaign, Braunschweig could hardly have been handed a tougher test as they look to get their first points on the board. Dortmund, meanwhile, are preparing to entertain their fans at home for the first time this term, and are planning the inclusion of a certain Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
An ankle injury sustained last month forced Mkhitaryan to miss the start of the competitive season, and though BVB have not suffered without him, winning three games out of three, including the German Supercup against FC Bayern Munich and their opening league game against FC Augsburg, supporters will be aching to see the summer acquisition from FC Shakhtar Donetsk in action.
“He has a huge desire to play, a great work ethic and is technically outstanding. He has everything,” said coach Jürgen Klopp of the Ukrainian league's top scorer last season. He is set to be named in the starting line-up, alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the hat-trick hero of the 4-0 win in Augsburg, retaining his place in attack. Jakub Blaszczykowski could also be set for his first start of the season with midfielder Ilkay Gündogan out
A Bundesliga classic
In former times, this was a game between two of the Bundesliga’s proudest clubs. Both sides were founding members of the league in 1963 and Braunschweig even went on to become German Champions four years later. Incredibly, the last time the clubs met was way back in May 1985, the season that Braunschweig were relegated.
The Lions will no doubt relish the occasion of facing Dortmund in Germany’s largest football arena, but the game is also something to savour for BVB manager Jürgen Klopp, who will be reunited with an old friend in Eintracht coach Torsten Lieberknecht. “We played together and then I was his coach [at 1. FSV Mainz 05],” he told bundesliga.com. “What he did with them last season was a great coaching performance and they will be very dangerous.”
No pressure for Eintracht
Lieberknecht will know that his side is under no pressure whatsoever to deliver in Dortmund, and that these types of matches against the division’s big fish will not be the ones on which their survival will depend.
For the Lower Saxon outfit, and their estimated 7,000-strong travelling support, this is primarily a day to be enjoyed. “We know that nothing is expected of us, but that means we can possibly spring a surprise or two.”
Dortmund: Weidenfeller – Großkreutz, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer – Bender, Sahin – Blaszczykowski, Aubameyang, Reus – Lewandowski
Braunschweig: Petkovic – Elabdellaoui, Bicakcic, Correia, Reichel – Theuerkauf - Kruppke, Kratz, Caligiuri, Boland - Jackson