It's all about contrasts
Sometimes, the world is full of contrasts. Even in football, you can experience big contrasts coming out of one match and preparing for the new one. Especially in what we call "English weeks" (with matches on Tuesday on Wednesday), those contrasts can be found. On Saturday, Borussia will go through such a situation. After playing in the Champions League against Olympiacos, a team which is successful over years and can refer to a certain tradition, VfL Wolfsburg is the next opponent travelling to the Westfalenstadion. After seeing at least some supporters of the opposing team on the other side of the Südtribüne, we cannot expect a lot of travelers coming from the motor city (even though 1.500 are expected to come). However, let's just hope that the outcome of the match will be the same as on Tuesday – another three points are needed!
So, what can be said about our team? Quite honest, every word is a word too much for such a commercial club. Car producer Volkswagen is behind the championship winner of 2009 and one of the reasons why the club is in the Bundesliga at all. To make things worse, Felix Magath is the coach of VfL and was even hated before his time at the blue-white rival. However, it still needs to be said that they have quite a good team (even though the way of getting it can be questioned). Of course, Magath did some of his trademark incomprehensible transfer activities, for example by signing players with a great past but nothing more to offer such as Kyrgiakos, Chris, Hitzlsperger, Hleb or Salihamidzic. A player we will definitely have to take care of is Mario Mandzukic. After an average first season in Bundesliga competition, the 25-year-old Croatian already scored seven times this season and assisted for three more goals. He will probably be the sole forward in Magath's 4-2-3-1 system.
After the 1-0 victory against Olympiacos, some rumors and statements of Mario Götze and his consultant caused some trouble in Dortmund since there was talk about Götze leaving some time in the future, then changing back to fulfilling his contract until 2014 and Klopp stating that Götze will not leave before that. However, all this talk was started by an article in the yellow press so there is no need to overestimate comments like that although it is a no-brainer that rumors around Super Mario won't stop if he continues to play on such an incredible level.
The personal situation more or less remained the same. Lucas Barrios is back in the squad but will take his place on the bench once again since Robert Lewandowski took his place during his injury and did a good job on replacing him. Sven "Manni" Bender is still questionable, his spot can be taken by Kehl, Gündogan or Leitner who was substituted against Olympiacos only because of cramps and is ready to be back on the pitch after his strong debut on Tuesday.
The match on Saturday afternoon is a pretty important one. After the match against Wolfsburg, a little break is coming up next and after that, there are some matches who will guide Borussia's direction for the rest of the year with Munich away, London away and the derby at home coming in only seven days. Therefore, a victory would be a pretty good end to the last couple of "English weeks" and could see us on the second rank of the chart with Scheisse 04 having a difficult away game in Hanover on Sunday.
Contrasts will be felt between Tuesday and Saturday. Contrast in terms of temper and amount of the opposing supporters, in terms of a different style of play of our opponent, in terms of the meaning of tradition and sympathy for the opposing team. Only one factor needs to remain stable: Borussia being the better team, Borussia scoring, Borussia winning and celebrating. Contrasts are there, but some of them are just not necessary...
Borussia: Weidenfeller - Piszczek, Subotic, Hummels, Schmelzer - Bender (Leitner), Kehl - Götze, Kagawa, Großkreutz (Perisic) – Lewandowski
Volkswagenburg: Benaglio - Ochs, Kyrgiakos, Russ (Thoelke), Schäfer - Träsch, Josué (Chris) - Dejagah, Koo, Hasebe – Mandzukic
Referee: Dr. Jochen Drees (Münster-Sarmsheim)
Expected attendance: Only some spare tickets will be sold before the match on Saturday. Another sold-out stadium could be predicted.