Borussia Dortmund will go head to head with Rasenballsport Leipzig two times in six days. First at SIGNAL IDUNA PARK on Saturday, where points in the race for the Champions League places are at stake, followed by the DFB Cup final in Berlin next week.
"We still want to achieve two big objectives this season," said BVB boss Edin Terzic. "One is qualifying for the Champions League, and to that end we need the three points. But that doesn't change the fact we really want to win the cup."
BVB have won their last four league games, have kept clean sheets on their last two outings and are now only one point adrift of the Champions League places. In addition, they beat Holstein Kiel last weekend to reach the DFB Cup final. "We succeeded in keeping our foot on the gas pedal against Kiel. We want to build on that and the last few weeks," explained Terzic. "That has given us a big confidence boost, and we'll need that in the Bundesliga run-in and in the cup."
Visitors Leipzig occupy second spot and recently won their cup semi-final against Werder Bremen. The Saxony side's Bundesliga record in the month of April was even, with two victories (home to Stuttgart, away to Bremen), one draw (home to Hoffenheim) and two defeats (away to Cologne, home to Bayern). "We will not underestimate the opposition; and we will not assess them on the basis of the last five matches, but based on their talent and quality instead," Terzic explained. "There has always been a high level in our recent matches against Leipzig. What matters is that we show our presence at 15:30 on Saturday and make it clear to everyone that we need these three points."
Leipzig are winless in six matches against BVB (four defeats and two draws), with BVB winning the reverse fixture in Saxony 3-1 thanks to goals from Haaland (two) and Sancho back in January. Terzic explained that meetings with Leipzig have always been tight, "even the reverse fixture, even if the result looked very comfortable in the end. It will be a meeting of two top teams who often play at a top level in these games. We've managed to play well in our matches with Leipzig, and that will be the challenge again on Saturday."
Terzic described the Leipzig team as "very flexible, both in terms of the system and the personnel. They have a very broad squad with different player profiles and are able to react quickly during the course of a game." Julian Nagelsmann's charges have conceded only 25 goals in the Bundesliga, which represents the best defensive record. "To break down their defence, we'll need Marco Reus and everyone else in top form."
Erling Haaland, who had to sit out the Kiel match on Saturday with an injury, is expected to return to team training on Saturday. "We hope that he'll be pain-free and therefore in contention for Saturday," said Terzic. Giovanni Reyna, who had to be substituted off in the Kiel game after taking a minor knock to his calf, is also expected to return to the training pitch and be available for Saturday.