Predicting the Borussia Dortmund Starting XI vs. Eintracht Braunschweig

Stefan BienkowskiFeatured ColumnistAugust 16, 2013

MALAGA, SPAIN - APRIL 03:  Willy Caballero of Malaga CF blocks the ball to Robert Lewandowski of Borussia Dortmund during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg match between Malaga CF and Borussia Dortmund at La Rosaleda Stadium on April 3, 2013 in Malaga, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images

This weekend Borussia Dortmund continue their campaign for Bundesliga glory when recently promoted Eintracht Braunshweig travel to the Westfalenstadion in the hope of picking up their first point, or three, of their new top-flight adventure. 

Yet despite only venturing two weeks into the new season, Jurgen Klopp has already been faced with a number of headaches over his selection for the forthcoming match, amidst a number of injuries and dips in form. 



Although Roman Weidenfeller can quite happily remain a mainstay in the side as the resident expert shot-stopper, the four men who'll guard his goal could be anyone's guess. Lukasz Piszczek remains out of action for the time being, which means we're likely to see Kevin Grosskreutz remain at right-back, like we saw against Augsburg the week before. 

Marcel Schmelzer is also likely to keep his place at left-back considering his impressive performances in the aforementioned season opener, yet when it gets to the two centre-backs, things become a little tricky.

Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic should be the obvious starting two. After Hummels' concerning performance for the national team on Wednesday, however, in which the first Paraguay goal was directly through his own fault, and a rather lackadaisical game against Augsburg last week, Klopp may be tempted to give his star defender the weekend off in place of new signing Sokratis. 

However this seems rather unlikely considering Klopp's insistence to stick with his trusted defensive pairing through thick and thin throughout his time at the club. 



Similar complications await Klopp in midfield for Saturday's match in terms of who starts for Dortmund in the middle. Ilkay Gundogan was unfortunate to go off injured whilst on international duty on Wednesday night, and as such is unavailable for the side for at least two weeks.

In terms of who'll start in the two holding midfield roles, Klopp is likely to stick with Sven Bender and Nuri Sahin over Sebastian Kehl, in a similar fashion to last week's game, to instill some form of consistency among the two. Yet the real headache begins when we consider just how the attacking three behind the main striker are likely to start. 

Last week, the side essentially picked itself, when Klopp had Gundogan in the middle playing the No. 10 role, while Marco Reus and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang took up the left and right wings, respectively.

This week, with Gundogan out injured and Henrikh Mkhitaryan still not fully fit, the Dortmund coach is likely to move Reus into the middle, with the intention of bringing the Armenian forward on for some game time later in the match, and bring Jakub Blaszczykowski back in to the side to play on the right hand side, while moving Aubameyang to the left where he was so effective against Bayern Munich a few weeks ago. 


With two goals and an assist in three games already this season, Robert Lewandowsi looks set to keep his role as Klopp's No. 1 goalscorer for the time being. Starting in the position against Augsburg last week, and against Wilhelmshaven in the game before, it would seem perfectly clear that there's no sign of the Polish striker losing his position up front.

It would make perfect sense for him to start Saturday's game in a similar role.