Happy Monday everyone!
I hope the dust among you all has settled following Der Massacre on Saturday (credit to millertime09x for that one)—at least it has for me. The good thing about a tight schedule is that before the Bayern game is really allowed to rip further into our black and yellow souls, another game against Newcastle is taking place on Tuesday night in the Westfalenstadion. Eddie Howe’s men will be looking for revenge after BVB managed to smuggle three points out of Tyneside when the two sides met about two weeks ago. Since the last meeting, Newcastle has managed a 2-2 draw against Wolves, a 0-3 against win against some lowly Manchester club, and a very strong 1-0 win against Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal.
The Magpies played a very strong final 15 minutes against Dortmund at St. James, and if they channel more of the same intensity in this 2nd leg, BVB will surely have their work cut out for them. Don’t let the 0-1 result from the first game fool you; Newcastle is still a very legit side than can pose a threat, even in one of the most intimidating stadiums in the world.
Emre Can is questionable for the match. Other than that, not much has changed since the 0-4 spanking against FC Bayern. I think Terzic will have to make some really tought decisions. Will he start Salih Özcan straight off the horror performance against Bayern, and will he trust Niclas Füllkrug to lead the line, when he was uncharacteristically absent in the weekend? Bensebaini has looked a bit vulnerable as well in recent games, so this will be a tough one to call.
I honestly do want to see Terzic rest Brandt, but I highly doubt he will for such an important game. Reus is in a decent run of form, so you could very much argue that he should start. I’ve opted for JBG, as he’s well rested and showed some very promising tendencies against the Pokal match against Hoffenheim. I honestly think squaring JBG up against Trippier is bound to be profitable in some way, as the English national team player very much likes to push high up the field and has lost a lot of pace in the later stages of his career. If JBG keeps challenging Trippier like he did Bebou in the Pokal, we’re bound to get at least a pair of big chances from our left side.
This is a very tough one. I don’ think we saw the best of Newcastle in the first game, and Eddie Howe’s men haven’t shown many signs of weakness this season. With that said, I do think many factors favors BVB. There’s the crucial home advantage and the fact that Newcastle doesn’t have much Champions League experience (if you believe in such statistics). None of the Newcastle players have played against The Yellow Wall before, and I honestly do think a good show from our fans could have an effect on the opposition as we’ve seen so often. If The Black-and-Yellows and PSG were to grab three points from their respective matches on Tuesday, things would suddenly look very bright in terms of advancing, so I predict a hard fought 2-1 win for Terzic’s men.