Borussia’s U19s will commence their most exciting English week of the season with a table-topping Bundesliga match against 1. FC Cologne at the youth stadium in Brackel on Friday (kick-off 16:00 CET). That will be followed by their UEFA Youth League last 16 tie against Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday and an important league home game against Borussia Mönchengladbach (4/3).

“We’re completing factoring out the Youth League. Our focus is on the game against Cologne,” assured coach Mike Tullberg, citing last week as an example: “We fully committed ourselves to facing RW Oberhausen and that’s exactly what we’ll do about 1. FC Cologne. PSG are not on our minds, we have to do our homework.”

The opening round of the short Bundesliga spring round has left his team in a comfortable position. BVB now top the table with 30 points, ahead of 1. FC Cologne in second place (28) and Schalke in third position (25). The Black & Yellows have won each of their six Bundesliga home matches to date. “And we want to continue this run,” declared Tullberg. Then his team would require only two more points from their two games against Mönchengladbach and Leverkusen to secure themselves a space in the Final Round of the German Championship for the sixth season in succession. 

“Cologne’s style is based on possession, they’re a strong, compact and well trained team,” said Tullberg. However, the visitors must do without their exceptional attacking talent: Justin Diehl, who made his professional debut in a Cologne shirt against Werder Bremen, was sent off for two bookable offence in a heated 1-1 draw against MSV Duisburg last weekend. Even coach Stefan Ruthenbeck earned himself a red card.

Mike Tullberg full of praise

“But Cologne have other top class talents in their ranks,” emphasised Tullberg. Like Jaka Cuber, who sits in third place in the Bundesliga goalscoring charts behind Borussia’s Julian Rijkhoff (11 goals) and Schalke’s Keke Topp (10), for example. “We want exactly this kind of big game,” said the Borussia boss as he looked ahead to the tradition-steeped clash with anticipation. He has recently praised his team in the highest terms, highlighting their focused defensive work and taking delight in some “very nice moves”. His only cause for complaint was that the goal tally does not correspond to the effort put in. “We’re working on that and we believe in ourselves,” Tullberg said.

BVB-TV will broadcast the game live on YouTube and the BVB TikTok channel. (wiwi)