Borussia Dortmund v Bayern Munich
Saturday November 4, 17:30
Live on BT Sport and Betfair Live Video
Under-fire Bosz has questions to answer
Football doesn't stand still, and Peter Bosz's stock as Borussia Dortmund coach has dropped through the floor in recent weeks. Having led BVB to their best ever start to a Bundesliga campaign, he has overseen a dreadful run of results that has seen Die Schwarzgelben lose top spot in the league, and slide towards the ignominy of an early Champions League exit.
Dortmund squandered a host of chances in their 1-1 draw against APOEL in midweek, and they have now won just one of their last six games in all competitions, a 5-0 drubbing of lower-league Magdeburg in the German Cup.
Like a shipwrecked sailor clinging to a life-raft, Bosz is adamant that his tactics, which include an incredibly high defensive line, will be successful in the long run. While many coaches would quail at the thought of facing a resurgent Bayern, Bosz insists the fixture is coming at the right time, as a win would restore confidence among both players and fans.
He may have a point. Dortmund have generally looked better at home than they have on their travels, and they pushed Bayern all the way in the German Supercup at the start of the season, twice leading before Bayern were victorious on penalties. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will hope to maintain his fine recent form against the champions - he scored the winner in the 1-0 home win in the league last season, and netted in the Supercup.
Ancelotti angst now a distant dream for Bayern
Having made the unusual step of firing a coach before the season was even a quarter of the way through, Bayern have shown just why they needed to jettison Carlo Ancelotti. The return of Jupp Heynckes to Sabener Strasse has brought the squad together, it has upped the intensity of the champions' displays, and it has returned the club to where it feels it belongs - the top of the Bundesliga table.
However, Bayern aren't simply breezing past teams. They needed penalties to see off RB Leipzig in the German Cup, and the rather controversial sending-off of RBL defender Willi Orban killed the teams' Bundesliga encounter as a contest before it had really begun. In midweek at Celtic, Bayern were far from their fluent best, even if they did come away with a 2-1 win.
The Bavarian giants are aided by the return of attacking fulcrum Robert Lewandowski after injury, while former BVB captain Mats Hummels should return after a rest. Interestingly, Heynckes has been keen to underline the threat that Dortmund pose, suggesting that Bosz's tactical issues are simply to do with the lack of time the Dutchman's been able to spend with his players. It's worth remembering that the teams had two victories apiece from last seasons' meetings, and Bayern have only won twice inside 90 minutes in the clubs' last seven clashes.
Bayern on the charge, but too short for Klassiker victory
Given the recent form of the two sides, you may think that Bayern's price of 2.08 for the victory is entirely fair, and maybe even a little generous. However, I believe this is by far Bayern's biggest test since Jupp Heynckes returned, and I think Bosz is onto something when he says that this game is coming at the right time for Dortmund. The atmosphere will be amazing at Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund have plenty of firepower with Aubameyang, Maximilian Philipp and Andriy Yarmolenko, and there's no doubt that BVB caused Bayern problems in the Supercup. I think this will be the most accurate measure of how far Bayern really have come under Heynckes, and I'll back Home and Draw in the Double Chance market at 1.90.
Auba to make his mark on yet another Klassiker
Robert Lewandowski's price of 1.70 to score in 90 minutes makes perfect sense given that he almost always scores against BVB, but I'm going for a slightly bigger price, and will back Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang instead. He's scored in all but one of his home games so far, and he's already whacked in 15 goals in all competitions.
Back Home and Draw in the Double Chance market at 1.90
Back Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to score at 2.08