The fiercely competitive, highly passionate Revierderby is scheduled to take place this weekend as Borussia Dortmund and Schalke go head-to-head at the Westfalenstadion.
Known in Germany as ‘the mother of all derbies’, the 155th installation of this tinderbox bout will see its two adversaries lock horns with quite different goals. Second-place BVB aim to put pressure on Bayern Munich at the summit of the Bundesliga, while Schalke will be hoping to consolidate their standing in sixth.
Usually a raucous affair packed with tifos, choreographed chanting and plenty of touchline spice, Saturday’s afternoon kick-off will this time take place behind closed doors.
Dortmund vs Schalke line-ups:
It was initially announced that Giovanni Reyna, the 17-year-old son of former Sunderland and Manchester City player Claudio Reyna, would be making his full debut for Dortmund. However, he has since been replaced by Thorgan Hazard due to “an injury sustained during warm-up.”
🚨 Our Starting XI against S04 🚨
Gio Reyna will make his first official start for BVB 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/bKSxcSPYbq
— Borussia Dortmund (@BlackYellow) May 16, 2020
Jadon Sancho is on the bench after also missing Dortmund’s last game, a 2-1 win over Gladbach.
— FC Schalke 04 (🏠) (@s04_en) May 16, 2020
Schalke’s last result was a 1-1 draw with Hoffenheim. Defender Salif Sane is back in the line-up after missing several months through a serious knee injury.
Where to watch Borussia Dortmund vs Schalke on TV:
- UK: The match will be broadcast at 14:30 on BT Sport 1
- US: Fox Sports
Where to live stream the first Revierderby of 2020:
- UK: For those without a BT subscription or the app, Bet365* are also streaming this match live for account holders. Those without a Bet365 account already who are interested in streaming Borussia Dortmund vs Schalke live can take advantage of this service by following the simple steps below.
- Click on this link.
- ‘Join now’ and enter details.
- Log in and fund the new account.
- Pick the desired event from among the ‘live now’ or ‘schedule’ sections in Bet365’s ‘live streaming’ category.
*Geo restrictions apply, 18+ only, must have a funded account, Ts&Cs apply, all odds & promotions in this article relevant at time of the last revision (10:44AM, 13/05/20), BeGambleAware.
- US: Readers based in the States can try Fubo, who are currently running a free trial offer.
A brief history of the Revierderby
With less than 20 miles separating these two titans in the heart of Germany’s industrial Ruhr region, this is a local rivalry like no other, one steeped in tradition between two sets of extremely partisan and fervent fanbases and dating all the way back to 1925, before the inception of the Bundesliga.
The Royal Blues were the dominant force in the embryonic years of this derby, winning 17 of the first 19 matches before 1945. However, the Post-war Era heralded the start of a new chapter in the Revierderby, with the tide turning and BVB emerging as a serious player in German football.
Dortmund won the Westphalia championship final over Schalke in 1947 and thus a fuse was lit. For many, this triumph marks the start of the Black-and-Yellow’s sudden upturn in fortunes and their meteoric rise to prominence on the elite football stage.
Between 1947 and 1963, during the Oberliga Era, Dortmund claimed the bragging rights over their rivals on 15 occasions, losing just seven times. The inaugural Bundesliga season in 1963 witnessed home wins for each side to ring in Germany’s new top-flight, but the narrative was very much in the same vein, with BVB continuing their superiority.
A slight shift would emerge between the mid ’60s and ’70s as the Royal Blues went 12 matches unbeaten. And since then, this has been a much more evenly contested derby, with BVB winning 33 Bundesliga matches to Schalke’s 32 (there have been 30 draws overall).
There have been title-defining games, with Schalke’s 5-2 win over BVB playing a huge part in Ottmar Hitzfeld’s side missing out on the Meisterschale in 1991/92 as VfB Stuttgart won the Bundesliga on goal difference; while the Black-and-Yellow would exact revenge in 2006/07 as they won the Revierderby during the penultimate game of the season. The result saw Schalke surrender top spot to (who else but?) VfB Stuttgart, as their hopes of silverware faded.
Other memorable moments include Jens Lehmann’s famous last-gasp header against Dortmund in 1997 and the time Schalke came from 4-0 down at half-time in 2017 to draw 4-4, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scoring in the first half before getting sent off after the restart.
The current climate
Schalke have flickered up and down the Bundesliga in recent years, challenging for the title in 2017/18 as Domenico Tedesco’s side finished as runners-up two seasons ago. But a collapse last term would see the 34-year-old head coach axed as the club finish 14th. This year, under the auspices of former Huddersfield Town manager David Wagner, they once again stabilised themselves and even re-established their position in the upper reaches of the table.
Up till a 5-0 thrashing against Bayern on January 25 that is. Since then, they’ve failed to win any of their six top-flight games while conceding 15 and scoring just twice. The run includes another 5-0 reverse, this time at the hands of RB Leipzig.
“The game started really badly for us,” said Wagner after the defeat.
“We played badly and completely deserved the defeat. It’s important that we analyse this honestly. We have to accept this and work hard to rediscover our form.”
He also told reporters: “We had too many players on the pitch who aren’t in great form, but there are reasons for that. A lot of our players have had to keep playing when perhaps they deserve a break. Others aren’t 100% fit and are lacking a bit of rhythm, in addition to the players we already have out injured.”
Nonetheless, the Royal Blues are currently sixth in the Bundesliga and have serious aspirations of getting back into Europe. A win over Dortmund this weekend would consolidate their standing in the final Europa League qualification place, with just two points separating them from ninth-place Hoffenheim.
As for Dortmund, they find themselves in familiar territory near the peak of the table. Bayern Munich currently occupy their habitual position of first. Lucien Favre’s men are just four points adrift the table-toppers, though, so maximum reward will be imperative this weekend if BVB are to bring an end to the Bavarians’ domestic stranglehold.
Since the turn of the year, BVB have garnered widespread attention for their scintillating play, free-scoring exploits and sheer ruthlessness. Favre’s squad is abloom with rich young talent including Jadon Sancho, Erling Braut Haaland and Achraf Hakimi, not to mention the experienced Marco Reus, Mats Hummels and Axel Witsel. When you add Julian Brandt, Emre Can and Giovanni Reyna to the equation, BVB are a real force, something to which PSG can attest.
For Schalke, they have their own creative cogs in Amine Harit and Daniel Caligiuri, while Everton loanee Jonjoe Kenny and Bastian Oczipka have added real flair and bite to the flanks. With Suat Serdar proving an immense goalscoring threat from midfield, this will not be an easy game for either side and could even prove season-defining come May.
Scoreline prediction: Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Schalke
Bundesliga 2019/20 table top-six standings and recent form (after gameweek 25):
- Bayern Munich (55pts): WWWWD
- Borussia Dortmund (51pts): WWWWL
- RB Leipzig (50pts): DDWWD
- Bayer Leverkusen (47pts): WDWWW
- Borussia Monchengladbach (46pts): LWDWD
- Schalke (37pts): DLLDD