Dortmund out to end Munich misery as Tuchel crosses divide
German football's biggest game will take on extra significance this weekend when Bayern Munich host Borussia Dortmund at the Allianz Arena.
Dortmund have mounted a serious challenge to Bayern's sustained Bundesliga dominance this season and lead the defending champions by a point.
Bayern's inability to take control of the title race led to them surprisingly parting ways with Julian Nagelsmann on March 24.
His replacement, a man who has the other side of this storied rivalry, Thomas Tuchel, who was BVB coach from 2015 to 2017.
Tuchel's Dortmund overcame Bayern en route to DFB-Pokal glory in 2017, but the former Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea boss is now immediately under tremendous pressure to deliver victory for Die Roten.
For Dortmund, a win in Bavaria could go a long way to helping Edin Terzic's men seal the title.
But history is firmly against them doing that. With the help of Opta numbers, we preview a potential title decider.
Dortmund's Munich misery
Dortmund's 2-2 draw with Bayern in the reverse fixture ended a run of eight consecutive defeats in competitive matches against them.
But the Allianz Arena has become a house of horrors for BVB. Indeed, Dortmund have lost their last eight away games against Bayern in the league.
In Dortmund's Bundesliga history, they have only had one longer losing streak away from home: versus Werder Bremen from 1979 to 1989 (10 matches).
Good omens for BVB
By their lofty standards, Bayern have struggled mightily in 2023.
They have won only five of their 10 Bundesliga games in 2023 (D3 L2) and have 52 points after 25 games.
That is their lowest at this stage of the season since 2011-12, when they had 51 points. The season ended with Dortmund winning the title, Bayern have not failed to do so since.
Since this campaign resumed, Dortmund have claimed a league-high 22 points in eight games. That is a club record for BVB after eight games in the second half of the season. The last time they collected as many points at this stage was the 2011-12 title-winning season under Jurgen Klopp.
The omens are good for Dortmund as they look to end Bayern's reign, but they will need to avoid a repeat of what happened the last time they were top of the Bundesliga in the second half of the season.
Table toppers in trouble?
Dortmund are top of the table for the first time since the second matchday of the 2019-20 season.
Prior to this campaign, they had not been at the summit in the second half of the season since matchday 27 in 2018-19, which saw them thrashed 5-0 by Bayern at the Allianz Arena.
Simply put, Dortmund cannot afford the same outcome this time around if they are to maintain their push to dethrone Bayern.