Borussia Dortmund vs Köln – Sunday, September 17, 17:00BT/18:00CET – Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund.
There are quite a few parallels ahead of Sunday’s big Bundesliga match at the Signal Iduna Park in Dortmund. Both Dortmund and Köln were in action midweek in North London, and both teams travelled back to Germany having been defeated 3-1.
Dortmund, however, will be the more disappointed of the two sides when it comes to looking back to the midweek fixtures. Facing Tottenham at Wembley Dortmund were the favourites ahead of the match and as expected controlled much of the ball possession and were ahead in many of the vital stats. At the same time, Dortmund’s defending was atrocious. The Yellow and Blacks were carved open time and time again exposing the biggest weakness of Peter Bosz’s tactical approach.
Furthermore, Dortmund were unfortunate to have two goals ruled off because of offside—while it was understandable that the referee called off Christian Pulisic’s goal the decision to call off Aubameyang’s beautiful goal caused great consternation among the travelling Dortmund support. As a result, Tottenham Hotspur led in the only key stat that matters, which is goals scored.
Dortmund head coach Peter Bosz told the media weeks ago that evenings like the one in London could be a part of the developing process. “There will be days where we will be scored on two, three or four times. But that will remain an exception.” Luckily for Dortmund, they now have a chance to make up for the miserable evening in North London when they face Köln on Sunday.
Köln in the meantime received their very own footballing lesson in London. Facing Arsenal Köln had a good start to the game tanks to Jhon Córdoba, who scored a stunning goal from 40-yards out. The Billy Goats had a good start to the match in London and felt more comfortable to give Arsenal the majority of the possession. An injury to leader Jonas Hector—he will be out for six to eight weeks with an ankle injury—however, and fatigue from the high pressing game meant that the Billy Goats soon succumbed to the pressure put up by Arsenal.
The result is a 3-1 defeat, and Köln now travel to Dortmund in danger of losing the fourth game in a row. Another defeat would be poison to what has been a harmonic time under Peter Stöger in the Domstadt. Fortunately for the Austrian coach, the management at the Billy Goats has his back knowing full well that after last season’s success there would be a time of restructuring that could see Köln play a season in the lower half of the table. Dortmund will be very much the favourites for Sunday’s tie as the Yellow and Blacks will want to win this game convincingly to move on quickly from their defeat to Tottenham.
Borussia Dortmund vs Köln – Player to look out for:
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang #17 – Borussia Dortmund
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was visibly disappointed after Dortmund’s 3-1 defeat to Arsenal. The striker limbed past the waiting press on the way to the team bus refusing to speak after what had been a bad day at the office for the striker. In all fairness, it appeared that Aubameyang was not 100% at his best due to a knock picked up in the game against Freiburg. Furthermore, the striker had a good goal scored by him ruled out by the referee. Aubameyang now faces the only Bundesliga side he has never scored against a gap in the statistic books that the Gabonese striker would very much like to fill.
Leonardo Bittencourt #21 – 1.FC Köln
Bittencourt was one of the better players in the match against Arsenal on Thursday. The winger broke through on his left side over and over again causing problems for Arsenal’s defensive line. At the end it he somewhat lacked the mentality to break through and cause real problems for the English Premier League side. Born in Leipzig to the former Brazilian Bundesliga player Franklin Bittencourt Leonardo Bittencourt grew up in Cottbus and played for Energie’s youth academy. Still, only 23 Köln is already his third Bundesliga side having spent time at Borussia Dortmund and Hannover 96. A talented winger many expected that Bittencourt would eventually develop into a German national team player. The big breakthrough, however, has not arrived yet, but the talent is certainly there to one day wear the white shirt of die Mannschaft.
Borussia Dortmund vs Köln – Match Stats
- Both sides lost 3-1 to a North London based side during the week.
- Dortmund have won nine out of ten games at home this season. Only 1.FC Köln were able to take a point at the Signal Iduna Park.
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored against every Bundesliga team in the league, except for Köln. He has also never won a game against Köln.
- Dortmund’s record at home against Köln is W23 D13 L6.
Prediction: Borussia Dortmund vs Köln – 3:0
Borussia Dortmund vs Köln – Possible Lineups
Bürki – Piszczek, Sokratis, Bartra, Toljan – Dahoud, Sahin, Götze – Yarmolenko, Aubameyang, Philipp
Coach: Peter Bosz
Horn – Klünter, Sörensen, Heintz, Rausch – Lehmann, Jojić – Risse, Bittencourt – Córdoba, Osako
Coach: Peter StögerManuel Veth is a freelance journalist and social media junior editor at Bundesliga.com. He is also a holder of a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which will be available in print soon. Originally from Munich, Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently is located in Victoria BC, Canada. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.