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Bundesliga Matchweek 13 preview: Union Berlin vs. Borussia Dortmund (Fri - 20:30h. CET) - Team news, lineups

Union Berlin welcome Borussia Dortmund to Stadion An der Alten Forsterei on Friday night, with the visitors looking to build on Tuesday's 2-1 win at Werder Bremen.

Union Berlin, meanwhile, earned a hard-fought 2-2 draw at Stuttgart without their injured top goalscorer Max Kruse.

Match preview

Indeed, two successive draws against Bayern Munich and Stuttgart has been a more than respectable return for Union Berlin considering the expected negative impact of Kruse's torn muscle bundle on the team's results.

There is no denying Kruse has been one of the stand-out players of the Bundesliga season so far, and the 32-year-old will be a more than welcome return once he recovers, but Urs Fischer's side have shown impressive resolve to avoid defeat against two of the division's better sides without their talismanic figure.

However, there would undoubtedly have been a degree of regret upon leaving Stuttgart late on Tuesday night, having led 2-0 at Mercedes-Benz Arena with little more than five minutes of normal time remaining. Marvin Friedrich had got Fischer's side off to a flier after only four minutes, with Taiwo Awoniyi continuing his impressive loan spell from Liverpool by scoring his third goal in five matches to double the visitors' lead.

However, Sasa Kalajdzic struck twice in the 84th and 89th minutes to snatch a point for Stuttgart and deny Union Berlin a third away win in four matches on the road. That makes it four matches in a row where Fischer's side have taken the lead but failed to win, so the 54-year-old will be working on defending leads with greater concentration and organisation.

After sacking Lucien Favre following the embarrassing 5-1 home defeat to Stuttgart last weekend, interim manager Edin Terzic promised more attacking football ahead of the trip to Bremen.

Terzic's players ultimately delivered for him, testing the opposition goalkeeper Jiri Pavlenka on nine occasions in a relatively dominant display. Terzic utilised a back four rather than Favre's preferred back three system, with full-back Raphael Guerreiro still getting forward just as often as he would from wing-back, illustrated by the Portugal international opening the scoring for the visitors after just 12th minutes.

Kevin Mohwald levelled proceedings before the break, but it felt like a matter of time until Dortmund pulled ahead once more, with Marco Reus sealing a crucial three points for his side in the 78th minute.

Terzic will know his side are likely to face a sterner test in Berlin on Friday night, and a better performance may be required to earn another win, but the early signs were promising as Dortmund moved back into the top four of the table.

Union Berlin Bundesliga form: WWDLDD

Borussia Dortmund Bundesliga form: LWLDLW
Borussia Dortmund form (all competitions): LDDWLW

Team News

Union Berlin will remain without Kruse until the New Year, with the forward confirming he had torn a muscle bundle and would likely face up to eight weeks on the sidelines.

Joel Pohjanpalo and Anthony Ujah are out with ankle and knee injuries respectively, with Robert Andrich serving the last of his three-match suspension having been sent off in the Berlin derby.

Dortmund remain without Erling Braut Haaland with a hamstring problem, while Thomas Delaney, Thomas Meunier and Marcel Schmelzer are also all out of action for the trip to Berlin.

16-year-old Youssoufa Moukoko led the line in Bremen in Haaland's absence and may receive another start up front with Terzic looking to utilise a youthful side.

Union Berlin possible starting lineup:
Luthe; Trimmel, Friedrich, Knoche, Grieselmann, Lenz; Griesbeck, Promel, Teuchert; Awoniyi, Becker

Borussia Dortmund possible starting lineup:
Burki; Morey, Akanji, Hummels, Guerreiro; Can, Witsel; Sancho, Brandt, Reus; Moukoko

Source: Sports Mole / Brett Curtis 

 

 

 

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