“If both Kimmich and Goretzka are out, I doubt Bayern will win.”

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Germany: Bundesliga

Signal-Iduna-Park

By Peter Vice

At a press event for Sky Germany, Lothar Matthäus pointed to some statistics that could offer Borussia Dortmund some hope this weekend in their showdown with league leaders FC Bayern München.

Lothar Matthäus.
Lothar Matthäus. Photo: Steffen Prößdorf, CC BY-SA 4.0

When it comes to this weekend’s mega-match between the two winners of the last 11 Bundesliga titles, opinion remains divided among the Bulinews staff as to what the outcome will be. Some fear that the record champions are simply too strong and the match might not be competitive. Others present a reasonable case that the BVB can pull off the upset. Still others point to some of the recent FCB disappointments to argue that Dortmund could even pull off a heavy upset.

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For those hoping to see Dortmund take the three points and finish the weekend at the top of the table, German footballing legend Lothar Matthäus imparted some encouraging news on Thursday. Speaking at a Sky Germany press event, the German national team hero turned commentator pointed out that Joshua Kimmich’s absence might prove decisive.

Matthäus pointed out that Bayern have a 78.9 percent win rate with Kimmich in the lineup. Without the currently quarantined midfielder, the FCB win-rate drops to 64.3 percent. Even more strikingly, Bayern score 3.2 times per game (18.8 shots on target) with Kimmich and only 2.2 times per game game (14.6 shots on target) when the 26-year-old is not on the pitch.

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As pertains to the match some refer to as “Der Klassiker”, taking Kimmich out of the equation obviously doesn’t translate to automatic success for the underdogs. In point of fact, Bayern lost Kimmich in last autumn in the 2020 “His-runde” of “Der Klassiker” and still managed to win convincingly.

Something that does nevertheless afford Dortmund significant hope of winning concerns the potential absence of Kimmich’s midfield partner Leon Goretzka. Matthäus brought this up as well, even going so far as to say that the loss of both actors could tip the scales.

“If Kimmich and Goretzka are out, I doubt that Bayern will win,” Matthäus noted, “The central midfield is the heart of the music.”

Predicted lineups
Final lineups will be posted about an hour before kickoff.

Dortmund

Bundesliga
Wolfsburg – Dortmund 1-3
1 Gregor Kobel
24 Thomas Meunier
16 Manuel Akanji
15 Mats Hummels
14 Nico Schulz ↩85
23 Emre Can ↩85
8 Mahmoud Dahoud
39 Marius Wolf ↩62
11 Marco Reus (C)
19 Julian Brandt
21 Donyell Malen ↩73
Bench
35 Marwin Hitz
9 Erling Håland ↪73
27 Steffen Tigges
36 Ansgar Knauff ↪62
5 Dan-Axel Zagadou ↪85
34 Marin Pongracic
20 Reinier
28 Axel Witsel ↪85
30 Felix Passlack
FC Bayern

Bundesliga
FC Bayern – Bielefeld 1-0
1 Manuel Neuer (C)
5 Benjamin Pavard
2 Dayotchanculle Upamecano
21 Lucas Hernández ↩90
19 Alphonso Davies
24 Corentin Tolisso
8 Leon Goretzka ↩56
11 Kingsley Coman
25 Thomas Müller
10 Leroy Sané ↩72
9 Robert Lewandowski
Bench
36 Christian Früchtl
7 Serge Gnabry ↪72
40 Malik Tillman
3 Omar Richards
4 Niklas Süle ↪90
44 Josip Stanisic
17 Mickaël Cuisance
22 Marc Roca
42 Jamal Musiala ↪56

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