Borussia Dortmund vs Hoffenheim preview

May 5, 2017
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

The ultimate battle for the final automatic Champions League berth takes place at Signal-Iduna Park, where fourth-placed Borussia Dortmund take on third-placed Hoffenheim.

The mere fact that the Millionaires find themselves in fourth place in the standings with just three games to go is enough to suggest things didn’t go too well for Thomas Tuchel’s side.

The good thing is that the Champions League qualification is already in the bag, but BVB also need to try and finish above Hoffenheim to secure a group stage appearance.

Borussia Dortmund did well to defeat Bayern Munich in the DFB Pokal, but could then only muster a goalless draw with FC Koln three days later.

The Millionaires were quite unfortunate not to claim maximum points, and it is clear they will have to be more ruthless in the final third if they want to beat TSG 1899.

Lukasz Piszczek and Ousmane Dembele are set to be recalled, but Marc Bartra, Mario Gotze, Nuri Sahin and Sebastian Rode miss out.

Probable starting line-up (3-4-2-1): Burki – Piszczek, Sokratis, Ginter – Pulisic, Kagawa, Weigl, Schmelzer – Dembele, Reus – Aubameyang.

Led by Julian Nagelsmann, one of world’s most talented coaches, Hoffenheim have enjoyed the most successful campaign since finishing as Bundesliga runners up in 2008.

TSG 1899 have booked their ticket to the Champions League with three games to spare, but just as Dortmund, they will attempt to achieve a top 3 finish.

Hoffenheim suffered a minor dip in form of late, losing to Hamburger and sharing spoils with FC Koln, but a top 4 position never came into question.

After scoring a last-gasp goal to defeat Eintracht Frankfurt, they can be backed at 5.80 (24/5) to see off Dortmund at Signal-Iduna Park.

Head coach Julian Nagelsmann will have fully fit squad to select from, with Sandro Wagner and Andrej Kramaric expected to form the attacking partnership.

Probable starting line-up (3-3-2-2): Baumann – Sule, Vogt, Hubner – Kaderabek, Rudy, Zuber – Demirbay, Amiri – Wagner, Kramaric.

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