The Bundesliga finally returns this weekend, and fans won't have to wait long for an incredibly exciting matchup, as Borussia Dortmund host Borussia Monchengladbach at the Signal Iduna Park on Saturday afternoon.
Borussia Dortmund - Goalkeeper Roman Burki looks set to return against Gladbach after recovering from an hip injury, while ex-Foal Marco Reus is likely to start on the bench as he continues his return from the serious injury that has kept him out for seven months. Dan-Axel Zagadou and Marcel Schmelzer are definitely missing for the Black and Yellow, while Mathieu Morey along with Nico Schulz remain doubts for the contest.
Borussia Monchengladbach - Marco Rose, in his presser Thursday morning, said, "We've had no new injuries this week. Alassane Plea and Marcus Thuram will been on board in Dortmund, but it is too soon for Denis Zakaria." He also confirmed that new signing Valentino Lazaro is unlikely to be back before the next international break, joining Breel Embolo and Andreas Poulsen on the Foals' injury list.
Borussia Dortmund - Roman Burki; Lukasz Piszczek, Mats Hummels, Manuel Akanji; Thomas Meunier, Axel Witsel, Jude Bellingham, Thomas Delaney, Raphael Guerreiro; Jadon Sancho, Erling Haaland
Borussia Monchengladbach - Yann Sommer; Stefan Lainer, Matthias Ginter, Nico Elvedi, Ramy Bensebaini; Christoph Kramer, Florian Neuhaus; Jonas Hofmann, Lars Stindl; Alassane Plea, Marcus Thuram
Borussia Dortmund - WLWLW. Latest result - 5-0 (W) vs MSV Duisburg
Borussia Monchengladbach - LWWWW. Latest result - 8-0 (W) vs FC Oberneuland
Ones to watch
Borussia Dortmund - "Jude is excellent. And don't forget that he's only 17. He's very present, both offensively and defensively," said BVB manager Lucien Favre when asked about latest English recruit Jude Bellingham before Saturday's encounter. Signed from his hometown club Birmingham City during the summer after a breakout season for the Blues, Bellingham will look to follow in Jadon Sancho's footsteps, going from a young English prodigy abroad into a global superstar.
Borussia Monchengladbach - Recently called up to the German national team for the first time, Florian Neuhaus is integral to this Gladbach team, usually playing in the number eight position. Neuhaus has a graceful way of marauding through the pitch, and now in his third season for the Foals, he will hope to continue his rapid development before potentially making a big money move away.
Not many supporters would envisage the one-sided nature of this fixture over the last five years, but Dortmund have beaten Monchengladbach the past ten times they have faced each other. The Foals last victory over the Black and Yellow came back in 2015 when Jurgen Klopp was the Dortmund manager.
Last seasons meetings between the two sides were slightly more even than before, with the two matches finishing 1-0 and 2-1 to Dortmund. The 2-1 win came back in March, with ex-Foal Thorgan Hazard scoring one of the goals at his old stomping ground.
Where to watch on TV
In the UK, the match will be aired on BT Sport 1 with kick off set for 17:30 BST.
What the managers have said
Borussia Dortmund - Michael Zorc, director of football
"We're glad the season is starting again. There are still no normal circumstances, but we are nevertheless happy that a partial admission of spectators is possible. We are very much looking forward to it."
"I think we had a very good start to our first match. We made it clear from the very first minute that we wanted to win. But against an opponent like Gladbach we need a top performance. We want to win on Saturday."
Borussia Monchengladbach - Marco Rose, manager
"Our games against Borussia Dortmund last season were evenly matched. It's always a challenge against them, but one we won't shy away from. It would be great to finally get the reward we deserve against them."
"We're excited to see 10,000 fans in the stands on Saturday. It will be great to finally see 80,000 fans in Dortmund again at some point, but it's a positive step. It doesn't affect our preparations in any way though."
"We go to Dortmund full of confidence and want to get a result. Personnel-wise, we're not in the best position, but the team already showed at the back end of last season that we're capable of dealing with that."
"Borussia Dortmund are very versatile in attack. We expect them to play offensively. We know what to expect and we will have the necessary respect, but we also know that we're capable of getting a result against them no matter what."