Our prediction for this Bundesliga match:
All eyes will be on Signal-Iduna-Park when Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 face each other in the first Rivierderby of the season. Lucien Favre’s troops aim to build on a hard-fought 1-0 win over Hoffenheim, and the star-studded hosts are seen as hot favourites to win the local derby. Norway rising star Erling Haaland, who came as a substitute at the weekend, is widely expected to return to the starting XI, while Thorgan Hazard is likely to miss the match with injury.
Die Knappen, on the other hand, have been struggling in the new Bundesliga season, and seeing that they lack in top-class footballers, the underdogs are unlikely to spoil Borussia’s party at Signal-Iduna-Park. Goncalo Paciencia, who found the net in a 1-1 draw with Union Berlin, is pushing for a start for the visitors, meaning that Vedad Ibisevic could drop to the bench.
Highlighted Player (Julian Brandt):
Julian Brandt is one of the most promising wingers in Germany. He started playing football in his hometown, Bremen, at SC Borgfeld, moving to FC Oberneuland, after which he joined VLF Wolfsburg’s youth academy. With 27 goals in his 48 games during two seasons with the Wolves, Brandt recommended himself to Bayer 04 Leverkusen, signing a five-and-a-half-year contract in January 2014.
The 22-year-old winger prefers to play on the left flank, but he can also provide help on the right side, as well as an attacking midfielder. During the season 2015/2016, Julian Brandt netted goals in six consecutive games, becoming the youngest player since Gerd Muller to achieve this.
The good performances in the season made Joackim Low call the youngster in Germany’s preliminary 27-man squad for the Euro 2016 and he made his first appearance for the senior squad in May 2016, against Slovakia. He was a part of the Germany squad at the Summer Olympics, where Brandt and his teammates won the silver medal. In the summer of 2018, Julian Brandt made the World Cup team.
Highlighted Team (Schalke):
Schalke 04 are a professional football club founded in 1904. Die Knappen (The Miners) compete in German Bundesliga and they have won seven domestic titles. Schalke have clinched five German Cup trophies as well, while lifting the UEFA Cup title in 1997. The German club defeated Italian side Inter on penalties in the title game and that was the last time the final of the competition was played in a two-legged format.
Schalke 04 play their home matches at Veltins-Arena, the stadium that has been the home of the team since 2001. The capacity of Veltins-Arena is 62,271. It is well known that Borussia Dortmund are Schalke’s main rivals and the Ruhy neighbours face each other in the Revierderby.
The likes of Klaus Fichtel (477), Norbert Nigbur (355), Rolf Russmann (304), Klaus Fischer (295), Olaf Thon (295) and Herbert Lutkebohmert (286) are the players with most appearances for die Knappen. The colour of Schalke’s home kit is blue.