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Schalke vs Dortmund – Sunday, April 15, 14:30BST/15:30CEST – Veltins-Arena, Gelsenkirchen, Germany.  

Schalke vs Dortmund will take place in the Arena Auf Schalke. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Schalke vs Dortmund will take place in the Arena Auf Schalke. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images)

The Revierderby is without a doubt the biggest and most important derby in German football. The 172nd edition of the derby will kickoff Sunday at the Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen and will not just determine the number one in the Ruhr but is also a battle for second place in the Bundesliga.

Schalke, in second-place, and Borussia Dortmund, in third-place, are separated by just one point. Dortmund have only finished behind Schalke once in the last seven years but since October have struggled to keep up with Schalke in the league.

Furthermore, after the heavy 6-0 defeat to Bayern Dortmund were looking down towards securing their Champions League spot rather than attacking the second place in the league. But football is a day-to-day business and Schalke’s 3-2 defeat to Hamburg, and Dortmund’s 3-0 win over Stuttgart now gives the impression that the two clubs are very much on even footing going into the match.

“We want to finish second”, Nuri Sahin told the media on Wednesday. “With a win, we will move past Schalke. But it is more important that we reach the Champions League,” Dortmund head coach Peter Stöger added.

Schalke are insistent, however, that they will not be affected by the defeat to Hamburg. “We have digested that defeat”, Schalke keeper Ralf Fährmann explained. In the ten, 15 games leading up to the match, we have shown almost no weakness, and even Manchester City or Barcelona have a bad day every once in a while”, Fährmann added.

“A derby like that is unparalleled in Germany”, Leon Goretzka added, who will be playing his last derby for Schalke. Goretzka further is insistent that the situation in the table will not matter. “The table is irrelevant. In the last few years, Dortmund were far ahead, but the derby was a tight affair nonetheless.”

The reverse fixture ended 4-4 with Dortmund carrying a 4-0 lead into halftime. An epic collapse in the second half would eventually lead to  head coach Peter Bosz being fired by Borussia Dortmund. While it is unlikely that the latest edition of the derby will lead to another goal fest the derby will without a doubt be another tight affair in which Dortmund will come up with a tightly fought win.

Schalke vs Dortmund – Players to look out for:

Guido Burgstaller #19 – FC Schalke 04

Guido Burgstaller has been Schalke’s top goal scorer this season. The Austrian forward has managed ten goals and four assists in 27 games and has scored a goal for Schalke every 193 minutes in the league this season. Signed from Nürnberg last winter the 28-year-old Austrian from Villach has not just been Schalke’s most dangerous goalscorer but also an important emotional leader.

Guido Burgstaller of Schalke in action during the Bundesliga match between FC Schalke 04 and Hertha Berliner Sport-Club at Veltins-Arena on February 11, 2017 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Guido Burgstaller is Schalke’s player to watch out for during the Revierderby. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Marco Reus #11 – Borussia Dortmund

Marco Reus will once again be expected to lead the line for Borussia Dortmund. As explained, on last week’s Gegenpressing – Bundesliga Podcast Reus makes everyone around him better not just by scoring goals but because he brings an unpredictable presence to the field for Dortmund. With three goals in six matches, Reus has scored a goal in every second game for Dortmund and will be the biggest threat Schalke have faced all season.

Marco Reus was the difference maker against Borussia Mönchengladbach on Sunday afternoon. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Marco Reus ist the difference maker. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Schalke vs Dortmund – Match Stats

  • This is the 172nd Schalke have won 68 games and Dortmund 59 (333-269 goals).
  • In the last seven seasons Schalke managed only once to finish ahead of Borussia Dortmund – in 2014/15 Schalke finished sixth and Dortmund seventh.
  • Naldo has already scored five times against Dortmund and has only scored more often against Frankfurt (six times). Naldo scored the tying goal in the first matchup between the reverse fixture.
  • Schalke’s record against Dortmund at home is W19 D14 L12

Futbolgrad Network Prediction: Schalke vs Dortmund 1-2

Schalke vs Dortmund – Lineups

FC Schalke 04:

Formation: 3-5-2

Fährmann – Stambouli, Naldo, Kehrer – Caligiuri, Bentaleb, Meyer – Harit, Goretzka – Burgstaller

Head Coach: Domenico Tedesco

Borussia Dortmund:

Formation: 4-3-3

Bürki – Piszczek, Sokratis, Toprak, Schmelzer – Sahin, Dahoud – Pulisic, Reus, Philipp – Batshuayi

Head Coach: Peter Stöger

Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He also works as a freelance journalist and among others works for the Bundesliga and Pro Soccer USA. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which is available HERE. Originally from Munich, Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently is located in Victoria BC, Canada.  Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth. Or contact him via email: [email protected] 

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