MX23RW : Sunday, July 25 13:02:35| >> :120:16672:16672:
Jan 3, 2021 at 2.30pm UK at Signal Iduna Park
DortmundBorussia Dortmund
2-0
WolfsburgWolfsburg
Akanji (66'), Sancho (90+1')
Hummels (25'), Delaney (40'), Braut Haaland (80')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Steffen (38')

Preview: Borussia Dortmund vs. Wolfsburg - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Bundesliga clash between Borussia Dortmund and Wolfsburg, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Borussia Dortmund take on Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga on Saturday, with the hosts looking to leapfrog their forthcoming opponents in the table with a victory.

Indeed, the visitors currently occupy the fourth Champions League qualification spot after losing just one of their opening 13 games.


Match preview

Youssoufa Moukoko comes on for his Borussia Dortmund debut against Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga on November 21, 2020© Reuters

It has certainly been a mixed start to the season for Dortmund, who removed Lucien Favre from his position as manager last month after a string of poor results.

Edin Terzic has been installed as interim coach until the end of the season, with the German confirming that star striker Erling Braut Haaland is "on schedule" in terms of recovering from his hamstring injury. BVB won only one of the four league games that the Golden Boy winner missed at the back end of 2020.

Haaland's injury did at least provide 16-year-old Youssoufa Moukoko with an opportunity in attack, though, with the teenager becoming the youngest goalscorer in Bundesliga history in the 2-1 defeat to Union Berlin prior to the winter break. The striker certainly looks a serious talent, possessing a left foot as fierce as Haaland's but perhaps even greater skill in tight areas to help break down a defensive low block.

Terzic may well call on Moukoko once more from the start against Wolfsburg depending on Haaland's conditioning. While it is too early in the season to brand any fixture "must-win", it does feel like BVB cannot afford to lose this one, otherwise they face an uphill battle to qualify for the Champions League for a sixth successive season.

Wolfsburg manager Oliver Glasner pictured in October 2020© Reuters

Wolfsburg have not competed in Europe's elite competition since the 2015-16 campaign, when they were narrowly defeated by eventual champions Real Madrid in the quarter-finals, but Oliver Glasner looks to have constructed a side capable of returning to the Champions League.

Only reigning European champions Bayern Munich have defeated his side domestically this season, with a premature exit in a Europa League playoff at the hands of AEK Athens perhaps helping Wolfsburg in terms of rest and recuperation for the Bundesliga.

That certainly looked to be the case during the 1-0 win over Stuttgart prior to the winter break, with Josip Brekalo's wickedly deflected free kick proving enough to overcome the high-flying promoted visitors. Both sides missed presentable chances, with Wout Weghorst and Nicolas Gonzalez particularly guilty of profligacy for either side, but the Wolves always looked to have their opponents at arm's length despite missing several key players.

Glasner will be hoping for more of the same on Sunday, but avoiding defeat and keeping ahead of their forthcoming opponents in the table may well be the primary aim from the match.

Borussia Dortmund Bundesliga form: WLDLWL
Borussia Dortmund form (all competitions): DWLWLW

Wolfsburg Bundesliga form: WWDWLW
Wolfsburg form (all competitions): WDWLWW


Team News

Erling Braut Haaland in action for Borussia Dortmund on November 28, 2020© Reuters

As confirmed by Terzic, Haaland is back in training, but may have to settle for a place on the bench as the Norway forward searches for match fitness.

Thorgan Hazard and Marcel Schmelzer are definitely out for the hosts, with Mats Hummels a doubt.

Wolfsburg have several doubtful players due to the coronavirus, with Maximilian Arnold, Maximilian Philipp, Maxence Lacroix, Jerome Roussillon and Xaver Schlager all having to quarantine over the Christmas period.

Admir Mehmedi is definitely ruled out with an Achilles tendon issue, but John Brooks is available once again.

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

Wolfsburg possible starting lineup:
Casteels; Mbabu, Lacroix, Brooks, Roussillon; Schlager, Guilavogui; Baku, Steffen, Brekalo; Weghorst


SM words green background

We say: Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Wolfsburg

With Wolfsburg's team selection up in the air, largely due to a coronavirus outbreak in the squad, we can envisage Dortmund starting the New Year with a win as they look to draw a line under the Favre era.

Haaland returning to the side would increase their chances of winning, of course, but we think they may look to ease their top goalscorer back into things, with Moukoko possessing the ability to punish a potentially-depleted Wolves' back line.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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Erling Braut Haaland in action for Borussia Dortmund on November 28, 2020
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Sunday's key events


SURFING
· Wave conditions permitting, surfing will make its Olympic debut (11pm-8.20am)

SKATEBOARDING
· Another debutant sport at this Olympics, most eyes will be on American Nyjah Huston in the men's street contest as he looks to add Olympic gold to his four world titles and 12 X-Games golds. (12.30am-5am)

TAEKWONDO
· History beckons for Jade Jones as she looks to become a three-time Olympic champion - something never done before in the sport prior to these Games (2am-1.45pm)
· Team GB's Bradly Sinden - world champion two years ago - is also going for gold in the men's -68kg category (2am-1.45pm)

GYMNASTICS
· Already-legendary gymnast Simone Biles makes her first appearance of the Games in the women's qualifying event (2am-2pm)

SWIMMING
· The first swimming medals of the Games will be dished out, with home favourite Daiya Seto going for gold in the men's 400m individual medley (2.30am-4.20am)

CYCLING
· Lizzie Deignan is among the Team GB team looking for success in the women's road race (5am-9.30am)

TENNIS
· Reigning two-time Olympic champion Andy Murray starts his title defence against Canadian hotshot Felix Auger-Aliassime (7am approx.)

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Olympic Games Men's Football
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Finnish Veikkausliiga
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