It is no secret among BVB faithful that Borussia Dortmund has not had its strongest start to the season. A 5-0-3 record is the result of hot and cold performances, with hard-fought victories against the likes of SC Freiburg and TSG Hoffenheim paired with frustrating capitulations against Werder Bremen and FC Köln. With 15 points from 8 matches, BVB are feeling the pressure.
Bayern Munich, of course, will barely be thinking of this as they sit comfortably atop the table, brushing aside hapless Bundesliga opponents. Or will they? After a savvy summer for Borussia Dortmund, some might have predicted that BVB and Bayern could be level on points come October; very few would have expected that to be in 3rd and 4th place. For all their early season goal-scoring exploits, Bayern also find themselves with 15 points from 8 matches, level with their Rhineland rivals. Like Dortmund, Bayern is under immense pressure to improve their results. A statement win for either side against heavyweight opposition would not only push them up the table but also set the tone for a match-laden October and November.
Following the win at Sevilla, expect Terzic to keep the lineup reasonably the same.
Moukoko should retain his starting spot after a convincing performance, while Mats Hummels can be expected to resume his role in defense assuming he is over his bout of illness. Gregor Kobel trained this week and should be fit to return.
Player to Watch: Jamal Musiala
Appearances: 7, Goals: 5, Assists: 3
The young German international has been a revelation for the Bavarians this season. Musiala has added goal-scoring instincts to his playmaking threat, helping to absorb the blow of Lewandowski’s departure. Few would have expected the youngster to top Bayern’s scoring chart this season, but Musiala has been hard to stop. Responsibility will fall on Jude Bellingham and Salih Özcan to limit Musiala’s opportunities in the build-up and prevent him from finding space to test Gregor Kobel.
After several seasons of lopsided scorelines and high-scoring affairs, I expect a different, more reserved set of sides to take the field in the Signal Iduna Park. Both teams are struggling in their own way, and fans should expect a cagey affair to run out with a 1-1 final scoreline.