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May 13, 2021 at 7.45pm UK
RB LeipzigRB Leipzig
1-4
DortmundBorussia Dortmund
Olmo (71')
Upamecano (45'), Olmo (81')
FT(HT: 0-3)
Sancho (5', 45'), Braut Haaland (28', 87')
Can (15'), Bellingham (25'), Dahoud (50'), Sancho (81'), Hummels (90')

Preview: RB Leipzig vs. Borussia Dortmund - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: RB Leipzig vs. Borussia Dortmund - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's DFB-Pokal clash between RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

RB Leipzig take on Borussia Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal final at the Olympiastadion in Berlin on Thursday.

Dortmund are aiming to win the competition for the fifth time in the club's history, having reached the final in six of the last 10 years, while Leipzig will be hoping to go one better than when they lost to Bayern Munich in their only appearance in the final in 2019.


Match preview

With manager Julian Nagelsmann departing Leipzig to join Bayern in the summer, the 33-year-old will be hoping to leave the club having guided them to their first ever major trophy, as well as winning his first as a manager.

The two sides played out a thrilling dress rehearsal in the Bundesliga on Saturday, with Jadon Sancho's 87th-minute strike securing a 3-2 win for Dortmund as they completed a league double over Nagelsmann's side.

The England winger was in superb form throughout the encounter, cutting inside from the left flank to double BVB's lead after the break after Marco Reus had smashed the ball into the roof of the net from close range to break the deadlock in only the seventh minute.

However, Die Roten Bullen are made of sterner stuff nowadays, with Lukas Klostermann pulling one back with a well-placed header from a corner before Hwang Hee-Chan raced in behind and unselfishly laid the ball on a plate for Dani Olmo to level the proceedings, only for Sancho to have the last laugh.

What may concern Nagelsmann most is that Erling Braut Haaland did not take part in the game due to injury, yet his side still could not gain a positive result.

The Norway striker does remain a minor doubt for Thursday's final, so Leipzig will desperately be hoping that Haaland's muscle issue continues to keep him on the sidelines, otherwise they will probably start the match as underdogs despite their loftier position in the league table.

Indeed, given his side's recent form as well as their positive results against Leipzig this season, Edin Terzic will feel increasingly confident of following in the likes of Jurgen Klopp's and Thomas Tuchel's footsteps to become the fifth Dortmund manager to lift the DFB-Pokal.

Neither side have conceded a goal in normal time of this season's DFB-Pokal, though, so it seems unlikely to be as open and entertaining as Saturday's league meeting.

In theory, Leipzig could still have caught league leaders Bayern, but the encounter certainly had less riding on it for them compared to Dortmund, who crucially leapfrogged Eintracht Frankfurt into the Champions League qualification positions.

Terzic must ensure that his defence remains resolute, then, as that tends to be their Achilles' heel on the big occasions. Should Haaland be passed fit, there is certainly very little wrong with the other end of the pitch, particularly against a side who prefer to operate with a high defensive line like their forthcoming opponents.

Having lost three successive DFB-Pokal finals between 2014 and 2016 before finally lifting the trophy for a fourth time in 2017, Terzic will be desperate not to remembered as another Dortmund manager who fell at the final hurdle ahead of Marco Rose replacing him as BVB's head coach in the summer.

RB Leipzig DFB-Pokal form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

RB Leipzig form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L

Borussia Dortmund DFB-Pokal form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Borussia Dortmund form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Team News

Nagelsmann revealed in his pre-match press conference that Angelino has been dropped from Leipzig's squad due to disciplinary reasons.

The 33-year-old is unlikely to be able to call upon Tyler Adams either due to a back issue, while Lazar Samardzic is out for the rest of the season with a meniscus injury.

Christopher Nkunku has recovered from a back injury, however, and could be forced to start out of position in place of Angelino at left wing-back.

January transfer window signing Dominik Szoboszlai is yet to make his debut for the club due to a groin injury, and despite returning to training earlier this week, the Hungary winger is unlikely to be risked in such a high-profile match.

Nordi Mukiele should replace Benjamin Henrichs at right wing-back from the side which lost to Dortmund on Saturday, with Marcel Halstenberg potentially coming into the defence in place of Willi Orban in order to provide more balance as a left-footed central defender.

Yussuf Poulsen and Alexander Sorloth will compete to lead the line in place of Hwang, with the Norwegian likely to win the battle having had more game time in recent matches.

Dortmund, meanwhile, are sweating over the fitness of Haaland, who Terzic revealed had suffered from a build-up of fluid around the region of his muscular injury.

"But the fluid is getting less and less now," said Terzic during his post-match press conference on Saturday, so it would appear that the Norway forward should be available to return for a match of such importance.

If so, Giovanni Reyna or Thorgan Hazard are set to drop to the bench to make way.

Mahmoud Dahoud was substituted against Leipzig due to a muscular injury, but Terzic said this was precautionary and that the midfielder should be available for the final.

Either way, Jude Bellingham is likely to replace him alongside Emre Can in midfield, having served his one-match suspension after being dismissed in BVB's previous league game against Wolfsburg.

Marwin Hitz will not be so fortunate, however, after incurring a knee injury which forced him to be substituted at half time against Nagelsmann's side. Roman Burki will replace him in goal.

Mateu Morey sustained a horrific knee injury during the semi-final win against Holstein Kiel and could be out of action for several months, while Youssoufa Moukoko, Axel Witsel, Marcel Schmelzer and Dan-Axel Zagadou remain unavailable and unlikely to feature again this season either.

RB Leipzig possible starting lineup:
Gulacsi; Klostermann, Upamecano, Halstenberg; Mukiele, Sabitzer, Kampl, Nkunku; Olmo, Forsberg; Sorloth

Borussia Dortmund possible starting lineup:
Burki; Piszczek, Akanji, Hummels, Guerreiro; Bellingham, Can; Reyna, Reus, Sancho; Haaland


We say: RB Leipzig 1-2 Borussia Dortmund

We can envisage a closely fought final between arguably two of Germany's three best teams at this moment in time, with Dortmund narrowly coming out on top against Nagelsmann's side for the third successive meeting.

Both sides have been hugely impressive during this season's competition, so it would be little surprise if the match went all of the way into extra time. As the game opens up, though, that is more likely to favour Dortmund with their speed in transition and extra decisive quality in the final third.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data



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Bundesliga Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CBayern MunichBayern34246499445578
2RB Leipzig34198760322865
3Borussia DortmundDortmund342041075462964
4Wolfsburg341710761372461
5Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt341612669531660
6Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen3414101053391452
7Union BerlinUnion Berlin34121485043750
8Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach341310116456849
9Stuttgart34129135655145
10Freiburg34129135252045
11Hoffenheim341110135254-243
12Mainz 0534109153956-1739
13Augsburg34106183654-1836
14Hertha Berlin34811154152-1135
15Arminia Bielefeld3498172652-2635
16FC Koln3489173460-2633
RWerder Bremen34710173657-2131
RSchalke 04Schalke3437242586-6116
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