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"We'll go into the game full of passion"

Head coach Julian Nagelsmann at the press conference ahead of the trip to Borussia Dortmund | Tyler Adams and Christopher Nkunku miss out with back problems

Busy week ahead with Dortmund twice! On Saturday afternoon (kick-off 15:30 CEST) RB Leipzig travel to Borussia Dortmund on Matchday 32 of the Bundesliga. Just five days later, the two sides will meet again in the final of the DFB-Pokal.

Ahead of the league meeting, head coach Julian Nagelsmann spoke at the virtual press conference about the upcoming game and team news.

Julian Nagelsmann on ...

... BVB's strengths:

  • "Borussia Dortmund are a top side with a hige amount of individual and collective quality. They have developed even more and have been enjoying a lot of successful games recently. They often manage to open up the game when under pressure, they are extremely variable in their overall play and are really good at speeding up the game. Especially offensively, they have an extremely high level of creativity."
     

... The team's tasks in the game:

  • "For us, the decisive factor will be to prevent Dortmund from getting into the high-tempo style of football that they are known for. Therefore, we will need to be felxible in defence. We will have to be on the opposition players and try to establish a good man-marking system early on to deny their quality coming to show. To do that, we need to be alert and work hard throughout the whole game."
     

... The impact of Saturday's game on the cup final:

  • "We will give our all on Saturday and go into the game full of passion because we want to achieve the goals that we set ourselves in the league. The game has a lot of importance for us and we want to win against BVB. Of course, the game has a certain impact on the DFB-Pokal final on Thursday, but we won't worry about that until after the game.
     
    For the most part of the game, we'll look to implement our gameplan, and do wha we do best and what sets us apart. Of course, it's also about being variable and having good and flexible approaches for the cup final as well."
     

... the reverse fixture:

  • "We want a better performance than in the Hinrunde, when we only played well for the first 35 minutes. After the break, we didn't have the solutions for Dortmund's high press. Too much of the game was played in our own half and the goals came about in the way that Dortmund are known for. We have to be very-well prepared if we want to be successful on Saturday."
 

... Alexander Sørloth:

  • "Erling Haaland and Alex Sørloth have similar physical abilities. One difference is that Erling had a perfect start at BVB, scoring right away after coming on in his first game. With Alex, on the other hand, he didn't hit the ground running and it took him a while to get going. But Alex Sørloth's development is good and going in the right direction. Of course, he would have preferred to score 20 goals. However, he's been scoring more often recently and has already scored a few important goals for us."
     

... Hee-chan Hwang:

  • "I was very pleased with Hee-chan Hwang's performance in the Bremen game. In addition to his goal involvements, he was always very present in the build-up and overall, did very well in bringing his strengths onto the pitch."

+++ Team news +++

  • Tyler Adams and Christopher Nkunku are both ruled out of Saturday's game with back injuries.
     
  • Lazar Samardžić suffered a meniscus tear in training and will be out for around four to six weeks.

 

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