Preview: Borussia Dortmund vs. Werder Bremen

Mario Goetze
© PA Photos
Borussia Dortmund begin the defence of their Bundesliga title on Friday. Here, Sports Mole previews their encounter against Werder Bremen at the Westfalenstadion.

Borussia Dortmund head into the new Bundesliga season with the pressure of being favourites to win the title for a third consecutive season.

Up first on Friday night is the visit of Werder Bremen, a side that finished ninth during the last campaign.

The hosts will be without Japanese international Shinji Kagawa, who joined Manchester United earlier this summer. His replacement, German international Marco Reus, is expected to take on the attacking midfield role for this encounter.

Mario Gotze has also been tipped to win his fitness battle for the champions. However, holding midfielder Sven Bender will play no part because of a hernia complaint.

Coach Jurgen Klopp will have to choose between Sebastian Kehl or Ilkay Gundogan to fill the void left by Bender.

Like Dortmund, Bremen also lost a key player to the Premier League recently when Marko Marin switched to Chelsea. His place in the squad has been taken by Eljero Elia, who joined from Italian champions Juventus.

Chelsea loanee Kevin De Bruyne is also expected to start on the right wing for the away side.

Dortmund lost just once at home all last season, while Bremen could only manage three victories on the road.

Possible lineups:

Dortmund: Weidenfeller; Piszczek, Hummels, Subotic, Schmelzer; Kehl; Błaszczykowski, Grosskreutz, Gotze, Reus; Lewandowski

Bremen: Mielitz; Prodl, Fritz, Papastathopoulos, Gebre Selassie; De Bruyne, Kroos, Ignjovski, Hunt, Elia; Arnautovic

Sports Mole says: 2-0

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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Augsburg00000000
2Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen00000000
3Bayern Munich00000000
4Borussia DortmundDortmund00000000
5Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach00000000
6Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt00000000
7FC Koln00000000
8Freiburg00000000
9Hamburger SV00000000
10Hannover00000000
11Hertha Berlin00000000
12Hoffenheim00000000
13Mainz 0500000000
14RB Leipzig00000000
15Schalke 04Schalke00000000
16Stuttgart00000000
17Werder Bremen00000000
18Wolfsburg00000000