”It’s always the right time for the derby to come around. It’s not just us looking forward to it; the entire region is too,” said BVB coach Edin Terzic ahead of the match away to FC Schalke 04. Kick-off in the big game is scheduled for 18:30 CET on Saturday. 

Second-top travel to second-bottom – but Terzic doesn’t want to read much into this going into the match: ”It will be a game, like always, that is defined by emotion and intensity and in which the league table doesn’t tell us anything. All that matters is the 90 minutes.” It should also be noted that the league table from the second half of the season thus far tells a different story: BVB are top, with six wins from six games, while Schalke are seventh, with two wins and four draws. The Gelsenkirchen club have kept five clean sheets in these matches. 

”They are on a really good track and will do all they can to make life difficult for us,” says Terzic, adding: “Their goal over the winter break was to get some stability in the team. They’ve managed to do that. You can see how passionately they defend.” The BVB coach has noted how the Royal Blues have opted for a more bold approach recently, pressing their opponents high up the park and looking to create lots of one-vs-one situations. ”It will come down to finding our mechanisms. We spoke about this with the team tomorrow, we’ll work on it today and then we want to deliver it tomorrow,” says Terzic. 

Despite bowing out of the Champions League away to Chelsea on Tuesday, Terzic thinks his BVB side come into the game in “a good phase” after notching up ten straight wins across all competitions prior to the loss in London. ”We were very disappointed after being knocked out, and we were critical of ourselves in the days after. Now we’ve shown our hunger,” says Terzic. The focus is now on fighting to achieve the remaining season goals: “We still have a maximum of 14 games left, 11 in the Bundesliga and hopefully three in the cup. We want to be successful in these 14 games.”

Question marks regarding Kobel and Reus

Julian Brandt will not be available for the first of these games after suffering a torn muscle fibre in London. The match has come around too early for Karim Adeyemi and Youssoufa Moukoko, who scored the 1-0 winner in the return fixture. There are also question marks over the involvement of goalkeeper Gregor Kobel and captain Marco Reus, who has been suffering from a bad cold in recent days. A decision on whether he plays will be made on the day of the match. Julian Ryerson, on the other hand, returns to the squad after his yellow-card suspension.

Für Ryerson als auch Sebastien Haller ist es das erste Revierderby. „Genau dafür haben sie sich entschieden. Sie wussten: Wenn es zum BVB geht, hoffen wir auf diese Spiele“, so Terzic, der auch betont: „Es ist ein ganz besonderes Spiel. Wenn ein Fußballspiel einen eigenen Namen bekommt, weiß man um seine Bedeutung. Nach dem Sieg gegen Leipzig in der vergangenen Woche haben die Fans gefordert, den Derbysieg nach Hause zu holen. Dem wollen wir gerecht werden.“

It will be a first ever Revierderby for both Ryerson and Sebastien Haller: ”That’s why they chose to come here. They know that these big games come around when you play for BVB,” said Terzic, going on to add: ”It’s a really special fixture. When a football game gets its own name, you know how important it is. After the win over Leipzig last week, the fans expect us to take home three points with us in the derby. We want to make sure that happens.”

Christina Reinke

BVB-TV by 1&1: the press conference ahead of the game against Schalke