Coach Jürgen Klopp sits out the game due to suspension, but Dortmund can nevertheless expect to hear his voice over the 65,829 others inside the Signal Iduna Park as he urges them on to victory.
“The coach will prepare us in exactly the same way on the training field,” midfielder Nuri Sahin said in an interview. “Usually during a game you’re so focused that you’ve hardly got any time to go to the sidelines and find the coach. We know he won’t be there and we’re prepared for that.” Klopp’s place will be taken by his assistant Zeljko Buvac, who will be receiving orders “telepathically” from his peer.
“Buvac is basically Klopp’s twin,” added Sahin. “Both of them see football in exactly the same way.” There is only one way to see Dortmund’s clash with the French side, who scored a memorable comeback victory at the same venue two years ago: it is a must-win affair. After losing in Naples, BVB can ill-afford to lose further ground on the Group F summit, even if Klopp was pragmatic about the current situation.
Bit of revenge
“We’ve got plenty of chances to regain the points we lost in Naples,” he said. “That defeat doesn’t change much.” Two years ago, defeat to a side then coached by Didier Deschamps saw Dortmund finish bottom of their pool, not even clinching the consolation of a Europa League berth. “There’s a small sense that revenge is in the air,” added Klopp. “Not a lot, but a little.”
Mitchell Langerak will deputise for the suspended Roman Weidenfeller in goal. “I’m very excited for the game, I’m very excited for the opportunity to get out there and play my first Champions League game here in such a fantastic stadium in front of such fantastic fans,” said the Australian. “We know how good Marseille are and we know what to expect. Me personally, I’ll just do my job the way I know how to do it and fingers crossed we can get the points.”
Marseille arrive without Benoit Cheyrou, the midfielder staying in France for “personal reasons”, remaining behind with the injured Andre-Pierre Gignac and Jeremy Morel in Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur. BVB are still without Ilkay Gündogan and Marcel Schmelzer, but Sven Bender is back available for selection.
Dortmund: Langerak - Großkreutz, Subotic, Hummels, Durm - Bender, Sahin - Blaszczykowski, Reus, Aubameyang - Lewandowski
Marseille: Mandanda - Fanni, Nkoulou, Lucas Mendes, Mendy - Romao, Imbula - Payet, Valbuena, A. Ayew - J. Ayew