Frank Kramer is expecting a "spectacular junior final" when BVB face FCB at Signal Iduna Park this evening (kick-off 19:30 CET). "Both teams play technically good, attractive football and have individual quality that sets them apart on a national level," said the Germany U19 boss. We bring you the match facts.
Potential attendance record: With 18,000 tickets being sold prior to this weekend, there's still a way to go. Tickets can be purchased in the BVB FanWorld on Monday or from the ticket office from 17:00 CET onwards. The attendance record for an A-Junior final (23,000) was set back in 1976 at the Schloss Strünkede in Herne, where Schalke 04 recorded a comprehensive 5-1 victory over RW Essen. It is a record that could well be broken today.
Personnel matters: BVB coach Benjamin Hoffmann will be without long-term injury absentees Dario Scuderi, Jakob Bruun Larsen, Patrick Fritsch and Sahin Kösecik, while Orel Mangala will miss out through suspension following his semi-final dismissal against VfL Wolfsburg. Dominik Wanner could replace him. The youth international had requested a break before the Wolfsburg match as he was not feeling fresh and did not feel he was in the right condition to help the team. Hoffmann said: "It shows there is a real feeling of responsibility for the whole group. We gave him three days without training and now he's feeling fresh again." FC Bayern will be travelling to Dortmund without first-choice shot-stopper Christian Früchtl (torn syndesmosis ligament) but are otherwise at full strength. Maxime Awoudja, who was sent off in the first-leg of their semi-final meeting with Schalke 04, returns from suspension.
View from the dugouts: BVB boss Benjamin Hoffmann said: "We want to round off an extraordinary season by winning the title in such a wonderful setting and will once again need to play to our limits to do so. The lads know all about FC Bayern's strengths in attack and from set-pieces. But we are optimistic." Bayern boss Holger Seitz added: "There are no clear favourites. Whichever team has the better ideas, makes fewer individual errors and manages to stick together as a team in the complicated situations will win the match."
No coach rotation at BVB
Match officials: The DFB have entrusted Rene Rohde from Rostock to take charge of this one. The 36-year-old has refereed in the 2. Bundesliga and the DFB Cup this season. He will be assisted by linesmen Franz Bokop and Felix-Benjamin Schwermer, while Lasse Koslowski will be the fourth official.
Distinguished guests: DFB Vice-Preisdent Peter Frymuth, DFB Youth Committee Chairman Christian Pothe and DFB U19 boss Frank Kramer will present the 2017 German champions with the trophy after the final whistle.
Coach rotation: This clash will be a final in the truest sense of the word for Bayern coach Holger Seitz, who completed his DFB coach training alongside Borussia's Benjamin Hoffmann. He will overtake the German record champions' U17 side at the start of the new season and will be replaced as U19 boss by Sebastian Hoeneß, nephew of Bayern Chairman Uli Hoeneß and son of former player Dieter Hoeneß. Sebastian Hoeneß currently coaches the RB Leipzig U17s and shadowed current BVB coach Thomas Tuchel, among others, as an aspiring young coach. There will be no rotation at BVB. Benjamin Hoffmann will remain in charge of the U19s and Sebastian Geppert will continue with the U17s, who have also qualified for the Final Round of the German Championship and will take on Werder Bremen in a two-leg semi-final on 6 and 11 June.
Kleinsteiber's record under threat
Record champions: Felix Passlack, Dzenis Burnic and Jan Binias, as well as long-term injury absentees Patrick Fritsch and Sahin Kösecik, will rewrite German football history if the Black & Yellows claim victory in the final. It would be their fourth year in a row as German junior champions (twice in the U17 category, twice in the U19 category) – a feat which has only previously been matched by one Dortmund player: Matthias Kleinsteiber, the BVB U23 goalkeeping coach and Youth Academy leader, was part of the BVB squad in the 1990s that won two titles at B-Junior level and two titles at A-Junior level.
Final repeat: It is the second occasion that Borussia will be taking on FC Bayern in the final of the German A-Junior Championship. BVB won 2-1 on penalties in 1998 after normal and injury time had ended with the score at 2-2. Current coaches Benjamin Hoffmann and Daniel Rios, who scored one of the spot-kicks in the shootout that day, were part of that title-winning team. Hoffmann joked: "We both know how to beat Bayern in a final."
Next stop: After the final of the German Championship, Borussia's youngsters will spend two days in Mallorca before resuming their season on Friday, when they travel away to FC Schalke 04 in the semi-final of the Westphalian Cup. Whatever the outcome of the derby, they have already qualified for the 2017/18 DFB Cup.