Juergen Klopp faces selection headache
Borussia Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp faces another selection puzzle when his side host Borussia Moenchengladbach at the Westfalenstadion on Saturday.
Midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan will miss the clash following his fifth booking of the season at Freiburg last weekend.
The Armenia international would usually be replaced with the former Moenchengladbach star Marco Reus, but the Germany international has not been fit as of late.
Reus did not take part in Dortmund’s 1-0 win at Freiburg, and has not been able to do more than a few individual sessions on the training pitch.
"If nothing extraordinary happens overnight, then Marco (Reus) will not be available," Klopp told a news conference.
With Ilkay Gundogan still not back, and Klopp having little hope that he will return this season following his ongoing back problems, the Dortmund coach believes he still has enough options at hand.
"We still have enough and good alternatives. Jonas Hofmann is one, and Milos Jojic is the other," Klopp said, hinting at a rare start for the Dortmund youngster Hofmann, 21, who this season has made 19 Bundesliga appearances, but none of them as a starter.
Poland international Robert Lewandowski could return to the Dortmund team, having missed the Freiburg clash with a minor knee injury.
"It looks much better for Robert," Klopp continued. "If he can take part in the final training session on Friday, I don’t think it’ll be a problem."
Dortmund still have a score to settle with Moenchengladbach, who beat them 2-0 despite BVB's domination for nearly 80 minutes in the reverse fixture last October.
Until that day, Dortmund had dropped only two points in the first seven games of the season, but many more followed after the defeat at Gladbach.
Dortmund sit second in the Bundesliga standings, but trail leaders Bayern Munich by 20 points.
Klopp will also have next Wednesday’s Champions League last-16 second-leg clash with Zenit St. Petersburg in mind when picking his side.
A fortnight ago, Dortmund won 4-2 in St. Petersburg, with goals coming from Reus, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and a Lewandowski brace.