Preview: First and Third Battle it Out at Signal Iduna Park

RB Leipzig are set to battle it out against Borussia Dortmund at the Signal Iduna Park on Tuesday, with both title challengers desperate to emerge victorious by any means. The former are currently on top of the Bundesliga after accumulating 33 points from 15 matches – 10 wins and 2 draws.

One of the biggest factors behind their success has been the form of striker Timo Werner, who has been unstoppable, to say the least. Werner has further struck an impressive partnership with fellow striker Patrik Schick, adding an air of superiority to the attack. Julian Nagelsmann has left no stone unturned in ensuring a team capable of making his presence felt under pressure, and delivering the goods through thick and thin.

On the other hand, Borussia Dortmund, led by Lucien Favre, have endured a stuttering campaign so far. Despite investing heavily in the summer transfer window, the Bundesliga giants have barely managed to sneak through to the knockout stages of the Champions League, which is a far cry from the dominance they enjoyed during their golden days under Jürgen Klopp. Paco Alcácer’s struggle with injuries has been a major factor in this regard, with the Spanish marksman a reassuring figure in attack for the German giants last season.

However, a switch to a back three has yielded results for Borussia Dortmund who look increasingly assured in all departments. The emergence of midfielder Julian Weigl, as a replacement for Alex Witsel in the lineup, is further a massive boost for the fans who are desperate for success.

Match Information

Date: Tuesday, December 18, 2019

Kick-off: 20:30 (CET)

Venue: Signal Iduna Park (capacity: 81,365)

Referee: Tobias Stieler

Broadcasting: Sky Sport 2 Bundesliga (Germany), BT Sport 2 (United Kingdom)

Head-to-Head

04.02.17: Borussia Dortmund 1-0 RB Leipzig

14.10.17: Borussia Dortmund 2-3 RB Leipzig

03.03.18: RB Leipzig 1-1 Borussia Dortmund

26.08.18: Borussia Dortmund 4-1 RB Leipzig

19.01.19: RB Leipzig 0-1 Borussia Dortmund

Current Form

Borussia Dortmund

Barcelona 3-1 (A) | Hertha Berlin 1-2 (A) | Fortuna Düsseldorf 5-0 (H) | Slavia Prague 2-1 (H) | Mainz 05 0-4 (A)

RB Leipzig

Benfica 2-2 (H) | Paderborn 07 2-3 (A) | Hoffenheim 3-1 (H) | Lyon 2-2 (A) | Fortuna Düsseldorf 0-3 (A)

Team News

Borussia Dortmund

Injured: Thomas Delaney (ankle), Marcel Schmelzer (calf), Axel Witsel (face)

RB Leipzig

Injured: Kevin Kampl (ankle), Ibrahima Konaté (hamstring), Willi Orban (knee)

Predicted Line-ups

Borussia Dortmund

Bürki – Akanji, Hummels, Zagadou – Hakimi, Weigl, Brandt, Guerreiro – Hazard, Reus, Sancho. (3-4-3)

RB Leipzig

Gulácsi – Mukiele, Ilsanker, Upamecano, Halstenberg – Laimer, Demme – Sabitzer, Forsberg – Nkunku, Werner. (4-2-2-2)

Press Conference

Julian Nagelsmann: “Our focus is now on another top team! Borussia Dortmund are an exceptionally good team with a lot of talent going forward and a lot of experienced players like Mats Hummels. They’ve got a great squad that will really push us tomorrow.

Dortmund will throw everything at it and so will we. It’s going to be a really interesting game! We’re two evenly matched teams. What matters most is how you perform on the day. Games like this are often decided by individual moments.”

Michael Zorc: “Leipzig is in great form and has won several games in a row. But we’re playing at home in front of our fans and we want to dictate the match ourselves.”

Score Prediction

Borussia Dortmund 2-2 RB Leipzig

By Arnab Mukherji

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