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Key Matchups: Union Berlin vs. Borussia Dortmund

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Let’s go on a cup run

1. FC Union Berlin v FC St. Pauli - Second Bundesliga Photo by Matthias Kern/Bongarts/Getty Images

Disappointing is an understatement when describing Dortmund’s play since returning from international break. Despite a slew of injuries to many first choice players, the results Dortmund has seen are not making title hopes look good.

This past weekend, Dortmund came all the way back against Ingolstadt, forcing a 3-3 draw on the road. Christian Pulisic’s insertion at halftime provided a spark for BVB.

Union Berlin currently sits in second place of the 2. Bundesliga, coming off a 3-1 victory over Erzgebirge Aue last weekend. Despite falling behind early and losing a defender to injury a pair of second-half strikes gave the Unioners the victory.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR - Creating Space

Union Berlin’s players have garnered the ability to create space on offense even when given the smallest window of opportunity to do so. Dortmund will really need to step up their defending against Union Berlin by keeping things tight at the back.

KEY TO THE GAME - Capitalize on Turnovers

Union Berlin has allowed some rather soft goals stemming off turnovers and lackluster defending. Dortmund will need to exploit this weakness in order to bury their capable opponent.

PLAYER TO WATCH: Damir Kreilach

The Croatian scored a brace in Union’s last match against Erzgebirge Aue. With four goals on the year, Kreilach will be a threat in Union’s midfield.

PROJECTED LINEUP:

  • Formation: 4-4-2 Diamond
  • Goalkeeper: Jakob Busk Jensen
  • Defenders: Kristian Pedersen, Emanuel Pogatetz, Roberto Puncec, Christopher Trimmel
  • Midfielders: Stephan Furstner, Damir Kreilach, Dennis Daube, Steven Skrzybski
  • Forwards: Simon Hedlund, Collin Quaner

PREDICTION: Dortmund wins 4-1

The way things are going for the yellow and black right now, it’s unlikely they’ll be able to keep any team off the board right now. But Dortmund should walk away from this one with a victory.