Dortmund v Arminia Bielefeld Bundesliga Preview: Must win for the BlackYellows

The match against Arminia Bielefeld on Saturday is a must win with Dortmund already in last chance saloon, their poor league form leaving their Champions League future hanging in the balance.

Dortmund are six points off the Champions League spots after their victory over arch rivals Schalke last weekend.

Two from Haaland – his sixth brace of the season – one from Sancho and one from Guerreiro gave the BlackYellows a convincing 4-0 win over woeful Schalke.

The victory of was only Dortmund’s second in seven in the league.

Special praise was reserved for midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud in Terzic’s final PC before Arminia at the weekend

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Dortmund’s 36th win in the Revierderby means so much to the football community of the Ruhr that 200 fans broke covid protocols to celebrate with the team outside the stadium, which the club had to issue an apology for.

However no matter how much it means to beat your neighbours, Dortmund have to refocus and set their sites on Arminia Bieilfeld who, whilst languishing in 16th, can still pose a danger as exhibited when The Blues almost beat Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena for the first time in over forty years during an extraordinary 90 minutes on matchday 21.

Dortmund will be without Manuel Akanji (muscle tear), Marcel Schmelzer (knee injury) and Axel Witsel (out long term with an Achilles’ tendon injury).

Terzic said in his prematch press conference before Satruday’s game that defenders Dan-Axel Zagadou and Lukas Piszczek as well as first choice goalkeeper Roman Bürki returned to training this week. However the return of Axel Witsel is still someway off which is hurting Dortmund at the moment.

The midfield maestro was imperative to Dortmund’s early season form including their best win streak of four matches in the league between matchday 3 and matchday 6.

Terzic didn’t give any specific dates on Witsel’s return saying progress is being made.

“Axel is fully on schedule with his rehab. He is making progress and is where he should be in the course of the process.”

Special praise was reserved for the recent form of Mahoud Dahoud.

Dahoud, who been frozen out of the team over the mid-season period, came back to form in stunning style in the Champions League against Sevilla last Wednesday.

Dahoud scored a stunning 20 yard strike to open the scoring for Dortmund in Seville and was integral to one of Terzic’s biggest victories as Dortmund coach.

On the midfielder’s recent form Terzic said: “Mo has often had to be patient, but he showed a great reaction. He performed very well against Schalke and Sevilla. We are very satisfied.”

Dortmund are unbeaten in their last five games against Arminia Bielefeld with the last victory coming in 2-0 away win on matchday 6.

Goalkeeper Marwin Hitz agreed a contract extension until June 2023. The backup goalie to Burki has been thrust into the lions den the last several games performing admirably for the Black Yellow cause.

On the extension Hitz said: “Thank you for your trust and I can hardly wait to see our fans in the stadium again as soon as possible see.”

Dortmund v Arminia Bielefeld, Bundesliga Matchday 23, Saturday 27th Feb, KO 14:30 GMT.

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