Going up against the best is something very special for the BVB players, and there's a lot of excitement within the team. "The Champions League is something very special, for us and the fans," Axel Witsel explained.
The "BVB Stadion Dortmund" – as Signal Iduna Park is officially named at international matches – is unsurprisingly expecting a sell-out crowd of 66,099. They will be the famous 12th man, according to Axel Witsel. "It's more than just a detail," he declared. "Our fans make for a crazy atmosphere. In some games where we're having difficulties, it helps us – and pushes us. I'm sure there'll be a super atmosphere tomorrow and that will help us to produce a good performance."
Like his coach Lucien Favre, the holding midfielder believes that a good defensive performance from the whole team will be the key to success. In that respect, Witsel felt there were big improvements in Friday's 4-0 home win. "We were more aggressive against Frankfurt. When we lost the ball, we wanted it back immediately. We'll need to do that tomorrow too. We can't let them have too much space; we need to defend well together."
Then it will be all about attacking the BVB way. Quickly, directly, and with strong link-up play. "We're focused on ourselves," said Witsel, adding: "We have a lot of quality in the team and we're playing at home." The first meeting with FC Barcelona – a goalless draw with few chances for the opposition but several for the Black & Yellows – will serve as the blueprint. The difference being that "this time we want to score goals too".