Borussia Dortmund v Hannover 96
Borussia Dortmund will be aiming to bounce back from their Europa League exit when they host Hannover 96 in a Bundesliga clash on Sunday.
The BVB were knocked out of the Europa League by RB Salzburg on Thursday night. The Austrian outfit won the first leg of the last-16 tie 2-1 and played out a goalless draw in the second leg to advance.
Dortmund have struggled for form in recent weeks, winning only one of their last six games while drawing four. However, Peter Stoger’s side recorded a 3-2 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt in their last Bundesliga outing and will be looking to build on that result.
Speaking after the goalless draw with Salzburg on Thursday, Stoger told the press: ‘In the first half we showed nearly nothing of what we planned to do,’ he told a news conference.
‘There are different ways in football to get successful and create chances, the quality of your football included. We thought we had enough of that [quality] on the pitch in the first half, but we saw nothing of it.
‘Concerning the areas and spaces we wanted to use, also in the box for crosses, we did nothing. That’s disappointing for us.’
Meanwhile, Hannover have seen their form drop significantly of late. The side have not won in their last four games and are currently on a three-game losing streak which has seen them fall from seventh to 12th in the standings.
Andre Breitenreiter’s charges lost 1-0 to Borussia Monchengladbach, 1-0 to Eintracht Frankfurt, and 3-1 to FC Augsburg. They now find themselves only seven points clear of the relegation zone.
Breitenreiter told the club’s official website after the defeat to Augsburg: ‘We work enormously as a team and are on the limit. At some point, then maybe the forces can be a bit far behind. ‘Nevertheless, we have run much more today than the opponent today. We tried everything and also showed a reaction in the second half, but we simply did not have the deciding means to get the last pass or to exploit the chance.’
On the Dortmund clash, he added: ‘Dortmund is about being a team. We showed in the first leg that we can beat the opponent – that will not be easier in Dortmund, but it is not impossible.’
Dortmund will be without the services of Sebastian Rode and Andriy Yarmolenko, while Hannover are missing Edgar Prib, Noah Sanrenren, and Ihlas Bebou.