The Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich teams that take the field at Wembley later this month for the Champions League final will look nothing like the sides that went head to head in the Bundesliga on Saturday.
That said, the match between the top two clubs in German football certainly had an edge to it, no matter the personnel, and as a result we can look forward to May 25 with even more excitement.
These two don’t like each other, and the mutual resentment was evident in a nasty, hard-tackling affair at the Westfalenstadion.
But there were a pair of goals to talk about as well—both of them rather similar and both scored by players who are not guaranteed starting places in the English capital.
Kevin Grosskreutz was the first to get his name on the scoresheet on Saturday.
The makeshift right-back, deputizing for Lukasz Piszczek, made a clever run to the far post and was in perfect position to receive Julian Schieber’s accurate cross, although he still had it all to do with a right-footed volley that was so precise it even surprised Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
But Dortmund’s lead lasted just 12 minutes, and not surprisingly, it was Mario Gomez who erased it.
Jogging through a nonchalant Dortmund defense the towering Germany international was all alone at the far post when Rafinha delivered a lovely, cross-field ball that his teammate had only to redirect into goal with his head.
It was far too easy, and defensive concentration is surely something Jurgen Klopp will be emphasizing as he prepares his Dortmund side for the Champions League final against a Bayern Munich outfit that is presently 20 points clear atop the Bundesliga table.