Borussia Dortmund has been very inconsistent so far this season. Some amazing performances and decisive wins were followed up by disappointing losses to teams that should have been put away easily. Some of that can be blamed on a severe injury-crisis and the need to rely on our teenagers to get us through those games.
Now Thomas Tuchel has most of his team back and the team will to confirm their strong performance against Gladbach against one of the best teams in the world in one of the most intimidating stadiums in Europe.
With the group win on the line the black and yellows will have to prove that they can hang with the big dogs.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: Hurt them on the counter
I doubt we'll go into the Bernabeu and control the game even though that is the preferred method of play from Thomas Tuchel. The Bayern game might be a good indicator for the tactics we'll deploy here, pressure them early and counter. With our plethora of fast wingers and strikers we'll be able to hurt them on the counter. Any combination of Aubameyang, Reus, Dembélé, Pulisic and Schürrle should be able to pose problems for Reals defense.
KEY TO THE GAME: Defensive stability
We need to be better on defense in this game. Real Madrid might be the best offense we'll face all season and it is scary to think about that if you consider the fact that we conceded four against Legia Warsaw. The key will be to pressure them early on and keep the ball away from the trio on offense. Keep the pressure on Modric and Isco to shut them down and limit the touches for Cristiano Ronaldo, Morata and Vazquez.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Luka Modric
I know, I know, Cristiano Ronaldo is playing on this team and he's on of the best players to ever play the game of football BUT Luka Modric is the one who dictates the rhythm of the game for Real. With Kroos (probably) out the task of linking defense and offense is almost solely on the Croatian international. If BVB are somehow able to keep him from working his magic it will be a lot easier on our defense to defend Cristiano Ronaldo up front.
- Formation: 4-3-3
- Goalkeeper: Keylor Navas
- Defenders: Daniel Carvajal, Pepe, Sergio Ramos, Marcelo
- Midfielders: Casemiro - Luka Modric, Isco
- Forwards: Lucas Vazquez, Alvaro Morata, Cristiano Ronaldo
A tie would ensure a first place finish for Dortmund and it would be a good result. I don't trust our defense to keep a clean sheet against CR7 & Co. but I also doubt that Los Blancos can keep our potent offense from scoring. It will be on our offense to get the result we need.