F I N A L L Y. The international break is over and we can all go back to Bundesliga football. Thankfully, we can take a break from international breaks until March 2015.
After completely outplaying Borussia Mönchengladbach, but still needing Christoph Kramer’s help to win a game, Borussia Dortmund travel to Paderborn – where hopefully a winning streak is, well, born.
The narrative comes quite easy, given BVB’s current position in the league table (15th). WIN! There is no other option, if they want to finish in the top 3. Of course, the black and yellows won’t just win any game from here on out until May, but an away game to newly promoted SC Paderborn is must-win. Simple as that.
And the international break wasn’t completely useless after all. Marco Reus had enough time to recover from his ankle injury, Mats Hummels and Sokratis Papastathopoulos are also close to returning, possibly even next Wednesday against Arsenal.
But the most heart warming news at last: Nuri Sahin, Jakub Blaszczykowski and Oliver Kirch are available to play again and are, to quote Mr. Kirch: “Burning to be back on the pitch.” – but Jurgen Klopp already dimmed the flames, as he announced that he rather gives the trio more time, before he throws them back into the heat.
So we can already take a shot on a provisional line up. All eyes will be on Matthias Ginter, who will form the centre back partnership with Neven Subotic. The 20 year old fe
atured 186’ Bundesliga minutes as central defender, but failed to really impress just yet. Given how good Hummels and Sokratis currently are, the € 10 million summer signing won’t get too many chances to showcase his trades.Kloppo, of course, loves his automatism and therefore not too much change can be expected from the previous lineups. Maybe Marcel Schmelzer will get the call ahead of Erik Durm and perhaps the Dortmund coach will start Ilkay Gündogan instead of either Sebastian Kehl or Sven Bender in defensive midfield – though given Kehl’s form prior the int. break, the former captain seems undroppable.There is not much reason to mix things up, as the team that started in the last couple of games gradually improved and will hopefully continue to do so. The performance against Gladbach was already pretty close to the level BVB fans are used to and if the team manages to replicate or even top ot the three points are certain – provided that someone in a yellow shirt actually hits the back of the net this time.
Speaking of starting lineups, there is to wonder if a certain Marvin Ducksch starts for SC Paderborn. The Dortmund loanee has just found his way into the starting line up when an infect ruled him out against FC Augsburg on the prior matchday. The 20 year old striker is a highly exciting prospect and might have what it takes to go on the goal-hunt for Dortmund in the foreseeable future. The kid just has that enchanting little bit of magic surrounding him, that might lead to the conclusion that he can make it. Technically gifted, pacey, dangerous from all sorts of ranges and angles, equally footed and quite cheeky – the skillset is already quite rounded, but it still needs some trimming in the Bundesliga forge.
Paderborn is just the perfect place for Ducksch, as André Breitenreiter is not only a brilliant coach in forming a collective that can hide individual flaws, but also relies on a brave Gegenpressing approach, which has brought them as far as up to 9th in the table. Quite a fairy tale for a side with a low budget as Paderborn.
It is quite refreshing to see how well the East-Westphalians (because Eastphalians would have been too easy) are managing their resources. Looking at the squad there are hardly any names that will cause anyone to break a sweat, but it’s a good mixture of experience and youth resulting in a solid collective that knows how to defend and has the wits and cheekiness to make it in the league, meaning not getting relegated.
But enough with the schmus already, for Dortmund it should be three points and an opportunity to continue with their development into the right direction. They need them dearly to start a lasting winning streak and leave the crisis-headlines to the blue team 40km east.
Kickoff: 22.11.2014; 14:30h (GMT); Benteler Arena