When the return leg between Borussia Dortmund and Juventus is kicked off on Wednesday night at the Westfalenstadion the guest will already lead 2-1 on aggregate. BVB will be trailing from the start, but the one away goal – courtesy of Giorgio Chiellini – means, that the black and yellows can go through with a marginal 1-0 win.
Looking ahead, it seems unlikely that Borussia Dortmund will progress to the next round – call it calculated pessimism, but I don’t see how. The last two games against HSV and 1. FC Köln have perfectly proven that BVB are incapable to overcome tight and defensively set up defenses, while being utterly susceptible to counter attacks. Given the probability that Massimo Allegri will set his side up to do exactly that – sit back and defend, it’ll be an uphill battle for the black and yellows from the very first minute.
Juventus are a side that’s easily rattled by Gegenpressing, as the first half of the first lack was evidence enough, but until Borussia Dortmund take the lead they won’t be able to make much use of that. Expect a thick bianconeri concrete wall with Vidal, Marchisio and Pogba ahead of a back 5 consistent of Lichtsteiner, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini and Evra who will look to stifle Dortmund’s attack in any way they can, not being too scared to use a dirty tackle every now and then.
While Tevez and Morata will look to hit BVB on the counter like they did in the first leg. Even without Pirlo, they still have enough quality in Vidal and Pogba, who should have been suspended after fouling Piszczek, to unlock Dortmund’s midfield with a single pass. Given that Morata and Tevez scored the 1-0 against BVB pretty much on their own, the Juve attack will grab their away goal eventually.
Maybe it sounds grim, but Dortmund’s current form does not suggest, that they will come out of this tie ahead. Juventus have pretty much secured the Serie A title, behing 14 points ahead of second Roma and can fully focus on the Champions League encounter. Even if BVB managed to save some energy in the lackluster performance against Cologne, they will have to play on their very best and have a bit of fortune to put every single chance away.
The game will probably go down as a scrappy, dramatic, tight affair and will be interesting for the neutral, so you should still watch.
Probable line ups:
BVB (4-2-3-1): Weidenfeller – Schmelzer, Hummels, Subotic, Kirch – Bender, Gündogan – Reus, Kagawa, Mkhitaryan – Aubameyang
Juventus (3-5-2): Buffon – Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini – Lichtsteiner, Vidal, Marchisio, Pogba, Evra – Tevez, Morata
Kick off: Wednesday 18.03.2015 – 20:45 CET – Westfalenstadion