Borussia Dortmund: BVB are in fine form of late and backed up a remarkable 5:2 comeback win against Hertha BSC with a comfortable 3:0 victory against Club Brugge in the Champions League. Favre’s men sit a point behind Bayern Munich at the top of the table, and top their European group. Having already scored 35 goals in 13 games and kept the most clean sheets in both competitions, things could be worse for Dortmund at the moment.
1. FC Köln: After picking up three points in the four games before the international break and putting in a promising showing against Bayern, FC had hoped that Sunday could have provided the first win of the season. An even game against Union Berlin ultimately went the wrong way, as Max Kruse fired home the rebound after Timo Horn brilliantly saved his penalty.
Lucien Favre: “Their record doesn’t mean much to me. Among other things, Köln only lost 2-1 at home to Bayern and that was undeserved. Each of their last few games that I have seen, have been close.”
Markus Gisdol: “We are the underdogs against Borussia Dortmund and that is clear. Against Bayern, we had an opponent who were incredibly strong and that is the case against BVB. We should remind ourselves how close we came to a point. Why can't we do that on Saturday?”
Borussia Dortmund: Aside from the absence of Marcel Schmelzer (knee operation), Dan-Axel Zagadou (knee injury) and Reiner (COVID-19), Lucien Favre has no new injury worries ahead of the game against FC. Raphael Guerreiro will be assessed after taking a knock against Club Brugge, but it is not thought to be serious.
1. FC Köln: The game in Dortmund will come too soon for Jonas Hector and Florian Kainz, as both continue on their rehab programmes. Sebastian Andersson and Jorge Meré will both miss out through injury. Anthony Modeste and Benno Schmitz both returned to team training on Wednesday and will hope to be fit for the match at the weekend.
Erling Haaland continues to be the name across everyone’s lips when it comes to Borussia Dortmund. While the team is packed with exciting youngsters, the Norwegian continues to break record after record. After scoring four times against Hertha BSC to become the youngest player ever to do so in Bundesliga history, he broke Uwe Seeler’s age-old record (20) for most goals scored in a player’s first 22 Bundesliga games (23). His brace against Brugge notched up his 15th and 16th Champions League goals in just his 12th appearance. Another new record.
Borussia Dortmund have won the last four meetings against FC, having scored five times in both home games in the process. However, prior to that, FC were a tough nut to crack. Dortmund had failed to win in the six matches prior to the current winning streak, losing twice and drawing four times. That included two clean sheets in the Westfalenstadion, as well as the memorable Anthony Modeste winner in December 2015.