Borussia Dortmund welcome Schalke 04 to the Westfalendstadion on Saturday afternoon, as they continue their push for the Bundesliga title.
With Bayern Munich not playing until Sunday, Dortmund have the chance to return to the top of the table (temporarily at least) and maintain pressure on the league leaders.
Standing in their way is a faltering Schalke side who have been very underwhelming this season and find themselves looking over their shoulders towards the relegation zone.
With a six point cushion and four games to play, the Gelsenkirchen outfit look as though they will be safe. Nevertheless, the season as a whole has been very poor by their standards and they will be hoping for a memorable away victory on Saturday to paper over some of the cracks.
Check out 90min's preview of the game below:
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Saturday 27th April|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||14:30 (BST)|
|Where Is It Being Played?||Westfalenstadion|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||Bet365|
Lukasz Piszczek faces a late fitness test on his foot injury to see if he will be able to feature in the Revierderby. Likewise, centre-back Dan-Axel Zagadou is not expected to return from a knee injury in time to help his side on Saturday. The pair last featured in the 5-0 drubbing handed to them by leaders Bayern.
Lucien Favre is expected to stick with the same side which ran out 4-0 winners away at Freiburg last time out, as he looks for consistency in the final stages of the season. Paco Alcacer may not make the starting team but is highly likely to feature from the bench.
For the away side, Steven Skrzybski has been in and out of the Schalke team all season with injuries and is expected to sit out once more with a thigh strain. Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Nabil Bentaleb could be recalled to the team after he was left out of the squad for their 5-2 loss to Hoffenheim.
With just one win in the last twelve matches, Schalke have been a shade of their usual selves this year. There was not much sign of anything changing in their last game, so boss Huub Stevens may look to shake things up.
|Borussia Dortmund||Burki; Wolf, Weigl, Akanji, Diallo; Witsel, Delaney, Guerreiro; Sancho, Gotze, Reus|
|Schalke 04||Nubel; Stambouli, Sane, Nastasic; Mascarell, Caliguiri, Oczipka, Bentaleb, Harit; Burgstaller, Embolo|
Head to Head Record
If Dortmund pull off victory this weekend, they would complete the double over Schalke for the first time in seven years. BVB's 2-1 victory earlier in the season, courtesy of a Jadon Sancho winner, was the first Yellow and Black victory in this fixture for three years.
Last season, this tie produced one of the most memorable comebacks in Bundesliga history, as Schalke came back from a 4-0 half time deficit to draw 4-4 with a 94th minute equaliser.
In the history of clashes between these sides, it is BVB who come out on top with 50 wins to Schalke's 42. However, with 41 draws these teams have shown themselves to be fairly evenly matched in the past, although this may not be the case on Saturday.
Favre's side have won five of their last six with their only defeat coming in the absurd 5-0 thrashing at the hands of Bayern. Last time out, Dortmund won 4-0 against a usually more robust Freiburg team and they will be looking for a repeat performance in the Revierderby this Saturday.
As mentioned, Stevens' team are in a torrid run of form, having recorded just two wins in the league in 2019. Die Knappen should have enough to remain in the Bundesliga this season, although if VfB Stuttgart pick up a couple of results in their final four games, they could find themselves in a relegation play-off.
Despite making it through to the knockout rounds of the Champions League, Schalke could suffer the same fate as another German giant - Hamburg - who were relegated last season and currently find themselves in second position in 2. Bundesliga.
Here is how the sides have fared in their previous five fixtures:
|Borussia Dortmund||Schalke 04|
|SC Freiburg 0-4 Dortmund (21/04)||Schalke 2-5 Hoffenheim (20/04)|
|Dortmund 2-1 Mainz (13/04)||Nurnburg 1-1 Schalke (12/04)|
|Bayern 5-0 Dortmund (06/04)||Schalke 1-2 Eintracht Frankfurt (06/04)|
|Dortmund 2-0 Wolfsburg (30/03)||Schalke 0-2 Werder Bremen (03/04)|
|Hertha 2-3 Dortmund (16/03)||Hannover 96 0-1 Schalke (31/03)|
Borussia Dortmund will go into this game as clear favourites when taking into account Schalke's form. However, with the pressure mounting on the home side as their season comes to an end, they have no room for error and this could lead to a nervy atmosphere at the Westfalenstadion.
Looking to take advantage of this will be Schalke, who owe their fans a performance following the 5-2 defeat at home to Hoffenheim. To do so, they will need to find a formula for victory which they have not found often this season.
Despite the tense atmosphere, Dortmund will be expected to have the firepower to get the better of their opponents in this tie. With the talents of Sancho, Marco Reus, Mario Gotze and more, the home team should come out on top.
Prediction: Borussia Dortmund 2-0 Schalke 04