Made plans for Tuesday teatime? Cancel them.
Get yourself out of that Zoom quiz as the Bundesliga is serving up the biggest game of the season with Borussia Dortmund hosting Bayern Munich in ‘Der Klassiker’.
All three points here for either side could help turn the title race on its head – either handing Bayern a daunting seven point buffer at the top of the table or shifting momentum back in BVB’s favour with the run-in looming.
Here are just five reasons why you shouldn’t move from your sofa once Borussia Dortmund vs Bayern Munich gets underway.
Dortmund vs Bayern – Five Reasons To Tune In
The maths really matter
Dortmund came within two points of wresting the title off Bayern’s hands last season, as the Bundesliga served up its first genuinely close title race in nearly 10 years. The home side don’t need reminding just how momentum can swing with an off-day in this fixture.
With only six games to go last season, BVB travelled to Bayern two points clear of their rivals and firmly in the box seat for their first Meisterschale since 2012. Bayern romped to a 5-0 win on that day, destroying Dortmund’s fragile confidence in the process, and the rest is history. This time around the maths favour Bayern at the outset, so BVB would love nothing more than to turn the tables.
Goals look a given
These games can sometimes be comically one-sided affairs, but these two certainly serve up their money’s worth when it comes to out-and-out entertainment.
Consider the six most recent scorelines between these two sides in the league – 4-0, 5-0, 3-2, 6-0, 3-1 and 4-1.
In fact, you have to go back four years for the last forgettable encounter between these two sides – a drab 0-0 draw in March 2016.
Tune in for the Lewandowski show…
Whatever happens on Tuesday night, it’s pretty safe to assume Bayern’s Polish marksman will be in the thick of it. The 31-year-old loves nothing more than scoring in this game, netting 22 times in Der Klassiker.
That’s all the more unfortunate for BVB fans who have seen Lewandowski go on to break nearly every Bundesliga scoring record going since he left the club to join Bayern in 2014. Home fans watching on TV will be hoping for some much-needed respite, with the Pole bagging at least a brace in all four of the last league meetings between the sides.
… but stay to see if Haaland is the heir apparent
One reason BVB have struggled to keep pace with their rivals in recent years is the lack of a goalscorer that can wholly match Lewandowski’s extraordinary output – one reason why Bayern have consistently pulled away in the second half of league campaigns.
While Dortmund do spread the goals around (Paco Alcacer (18) and Marco Reus (17) contributed respectable hauls last year), in Haaland they look to have finally found the man to help close the gap.
The precocious Norwegian has already hit double figures in goals since arriving in January and could receive the Freedom of Dortmund with a showstopping display here.
We’re well overdue a red card…
Now, we appreciate the lack of a partisan crowd in the Westfalenstadion means this game is likely to lack the blood and thunder intensity of previous derbies.
However, don’t expect the 22 players out on the pitch to be anything but fully commited to getting the result both sides desperately crave.
This rivalry has been surprisingly squeaky clean in recent times, but could that change on Tuesday night?
Remember, this will be the third game for both sides in less than 10 days.
It’s only to be expected that legs will be a little heavy after nearly two months away.
Flagging fitness levels, combined with a rash challenge or two, could make it a busy night for the referee even without two sets of supporters influencing his every move.