Borussia Dortmund are trying to keep the pressure up on FC Bayern Munich heading into Matchday 13. The Black and Yellows travel to sixth-place VfL Wolfsburg, seeking to bounce back from the disappointing mid-week loss in the Champions League against Sporting.

The job for BVB coach Marco Rose will not get easier anytime soon. The Westphalians are competing with a decimated squad. Neither Raphael Guerreiro nor Jude Bellingham made the trip to Volkswagen’s factory team.

The Portuguese left-back suffered a muscular injury during the warm-up for Wednesday’s match in Portugal. This development is doubly painful since the 27-year-old had just returned from injury against VfB Stuttgart and does not shine a good light on BVB’s medical staff.

Dortmund will also have to do without their most consistent midfielder against the Wolves. “Jude [Bellingham] suffered a knock against Sporting but it’s nothing serious,” Rose explained his news conference on Friday. Youssoufa Moukoko, who turned 17 last week, remains out with an eye infection, while attacker Thorgan Hazard is still out after contracting Coronavirus.

Haaland’s return boosts confidence

There are some news, however, that will lift spirits in Dortmund. Erling Haaland has participated in Friday’s final team training and did make the trip to Lower Saxony. After speculations whether the superstar could make a return before the turn of the year, his inclusion in the match day squad comes as a welcomed surprise.

“Erling feels in a good shape,” Rose explained but managed expectations about the 21-year-old in the same breath: “but a late substitution is the maximum at the moment.”

Dortmund will hope that Haaland, who had been ruled out since mid-October with a hip flexor injury, will be ready to start against Bayern Munich in a week’s time.

Marius Wolf also has overcome a muscular injury. The jack-of-all-trades could take some load off the struggling Nico Schulz at left-back or feature as a winger in attack.

Though there are still no news on Giovanni Reyna’s return. The U.S.-midfielder picked up a muscle injury while being on international duty and has not featured for the German Bundesliga outfit since Matchday 3.

Potential starting XI: Kobel – Meunier, Akanji, Hummels, Can – Witsel – Dahoud, Brandt – Reus – Malen, Tigges