Ruhr derby fireworks on Saturday
Borussia Dortmund host Schalke in a Ruhr derby on Saturday in aiming to bounce back from their 3-0 defeat at RB Leipzig last weekend.
Edin Terzic would have been humbled by such a heavy defeat to Marco Rose and will be hoping to win the supporters back with a statement victory over Schalke.
The Royal Blues have begun the season competently and at this stage they do not look at risk of relegation back to the 2. Bundesliga.
Dortmund make the trip to Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday, and such a difficult match may have a bearing on the strength of Terzic’s side when the weekend arrives.
Dortmund have been far more impressive defensively than going forward so far this season, but the miles in their legs could lead to a decrease in that effectiveness on Saturday.
BVB rank second in the Bundesliga for defensive process, conceding seven goals from chances equating to 5.8 expected goals (xG) against so far this term.
The league, and its top teams, have been very strong going forward in recent seasons and once they are up to speed Dortmund should begin to click in the final third, they rank seventh for attacking process, scoring eight from 9.3 xGF in six outings.
Schalke have scored the same amount of goals so far as the hosts, but defensively they have not been as watertight.
The Royal Blues have conceded 13 goals from 9.7 xGA, an unsustainable underperformance, with their process ranking them 13th in the division.
Dortmund are rightfully strong favourites given the talent in their squad but the trip to Manchester and derby feel could make this one closer than expected.
Pro-goals is my angle into this fixture, although I am going to be cautious because the lines are high already.
Dortmund have scored in seven of eight.
Dortmund have conceded in three of eight.
Dortmund have seen both teams score in two of eight.
Dortmund have seen over 2.5 goals in five of eight.
Schalke have scored in six of seven.
Schalke have conceded in five of seven.
Schalke have seen both teams score in five of seven.
Schalke have seen over 2.5 goals in five of seven.