DORTMUND, Nov 9 — Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund host defending champions Bayern Munich tomorrow in Germany’s ‘Der Klassiker’ — the showdown between the two clubs which have dominated the German league since 2009.
Dortmund close on record
Dortmund are the only team in Germany’s top flight who remain unbeaten after the first ten league games and can equal the club record of 11 Bundesliga matches without defeat, set at the start of 2002/03 which coincidentally was ended by a 2-1 defeat to Bayern.
Lucien Favre is also approaching the unbeaten record for a Dortmund head coach — set by his predecessor Peter Stoeger who went 12 Bundesliga games without defeat in 2017/18 — until Bayern hammered Borussia 6-0 last March.
Bayern have beaten Dortmund in 10 of the 19 matches (10 Bundesliga matches, five German Cup ties and four pre-season Super Cup matches) between Germany’s top clubs since the Bavarian giants won the 2013 Champions League final at Wembley.
The last of Dortmund’s five recent wins over Bayern was in April 2017 when Ousmane Dembele, now at Barcelona, scored the winning goal in a 3-2 semi-final victory in the German Cup. There have also been four draws since 2013.
Of the total of 120 meetings between the clubs, Bayern have 58 victories to Dortmund’s 32 with 30 draws.
Tomorrow’s match is a 81,320 sell-out at Signal Iduna Park and will be televised in over 200 countries.
Winger Franck Ribery, 35, will be keen to get on the scoresheet having last scored for Bayern in March’s 6-0 romp against Dortmund in Munich.
Since then, the veteran has gone 572 minutes without scoring in the Bundesliga — his longest run without a goal in the league since the treble-winning season of 2012/2013 when he failed to score in 901 minutes.
Alcacer’s phenomenal rate
Dortmund striker Paco Alcacer, now recovered from a thigh injury, will have the Bayern defence on red alert.
Since joining on loan from Barcelona, Alcacer scored a phenomenal seven goals in his first four games at a ratio of one every 33 minutes.
Belgium star Axel Witsel, another new Dortmund signing, will be looking to swing the midfield battle the hosts’ way.
The central midfielder has also weighed in with three goals this season, including the crucial winner in a tricky German Cup tie last August.
The Lewandowski factor
Poland striker Robert Lewandowski has provided the goals for both Bayern and Dortmund in their heaviest wins over their rivals in recent memory.
He hit a hat-trick for hosts Munich against ex-club Dortmund, who he played for from 2010-2014, in March’s 6-0 drubbing.
However, the 30-year-old also scored three goals in Dortmund’s 5-2 thrashing of Bayern in the 2012 German Cup final when Borussia ran riot at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium.
After scoring 103 goals in 187 games for Borussia, Lewandowski joined Bayern on a free transfer four years ago and has since scored 164 goals in 210 matches — including 12 goals in 15 games against Dortmund. — AFP