Preview: Dortmund hope Champions League high will help at Schalke

By Karolos Grohmann

BERLIN (Reuters) - Borussia Dortmund are hoping their Champions League momentum will spill over into the Bundesliga when they travel to Schalke 04 in Saturday's Ruhr valley derby (1330 GMT) after they lost both matches to their arch-rivals last season.

Last season's Champions League runners-up Dortmund go into the game on the back of a 2-1 win at Arsenal that put them firmly on track for a top-two group finish.

However, with two wins in their last four Bundesliga games, the 2011 and 2012 Champions have dropped one point behind leaders Bayern Munich after briefly losing their domestic focus.

"The game against Arsenal will give us a boost for Saturday," said Dortmund midfielder Nuri Sahin. "The only thing we have to do is recover quickly and put the focus on a derby win."

The match against Schalke is the highlight for all Dortmund fans and victory would only strengthen their confidence about challenging Bayern for domestic glory.

Dortmund won the league in 2011 and 2012 but lost out to treble-winning Bayern last season.

"It is easier to recover after winning a game, especially mentally and that will help us a lot in the derby," said Dortmund midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

"I was told early on what kind of importance that game has and I am really looking forward to it," added the Armenian, who was on target against Arsenal.

Schalke, on the other hand, will want to wipe the slate clean after a 3-0 defeat to visiting Chelsea in their own Champions League match on Tuesday.

"We do not need to be motivated for such a game. The Bundesliga derby starts from 0-0 and it will be a fiercely-contested game," said Schalke goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand. "Dortmund will not be defending like Chelsea and we have learned our lessons from that game."

Schalke will be without injured Jefferson Farfan and Marco Hoeger as well as long-term absentees Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Kyriakos Papadopoulos.

There is also a big question mark over the fitness of Kevin-Prince Boateng, who recovered from a two-week knee injury break in time for Chelsea but was a long way from his best.

He played in an unusual forward position against Chelsea but made no impact.

"I played him as a forward because he did not need to run that much in that position," said Keller. "He has hardly trained in two weeks and told me at halftime he had run out of steam."

Bayern Munich entertain promoted Hertha Berlin while third-placed Bayer Leverkusen, level with Dortmund on 22 points, host Augsburg (both 1330). (Editing by Clare Fallon)

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Kallis, Narine star in Knight Riders’ crushing win

Kallis, Narine star in Knight Riders’ crushing win

An all-round display saw Knight Riders thump Mumbai Indians by 41 runs in the IPL-7 opener. More »

Pietersen to miss Delhi's first game

Pietersen to miss Delhi's first game

The former England batsman will have to lead the franchise as he is out of the match against Bangalore with a finger injury. More »

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

The court emphasised that the tainted administrator can no longer work for the BCCI. More »

'If you do the wrong thing it will be found out'

'If you do the wrong thing it will be found out'

'Everyone knows what is right and what is wrong and if you do the wrong thing it will be found out' More »

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Welcome to another season of a league that many watch but few trust. More »

Mitchell Johnson may quit T20s for Test cricket

Mitchell Johnson may quit T20s for Test cricket

Australia's Mitchell Johnson may quit limited-overs cricket to prolong his test career with an eye on the 2015 Ashes series in England, the fast bowler… More »

There's a lot going on: Fleming

There's a lot going on: Fleming

He experienced anxious moments in the lead-up to the tournament as the courts decided on whether to suspend the franchise, he said, but stressed that the… More »

Latif couldn’t work with tainted players

Latif couldn’t work with tainted players

Former Pakistan cricket captain Rashid Latif said Tuesday he turned down the job of national chief selector because he could not work with ex-players tainted… More »

We are not over-confident: Bailey

We are not over-confident: Bailey

Indian Premier League — George Bailey-led Kings XI Punjab will face Chennai Super Kings on Friday. More »

Taxing issue — BCCI hits roadblock

Taxing issue — BCCI hits roadblock

MoU between BCCI & its units to avoid double taxation delayed after a few decline to share details. More »

Big runs expected, with bat and ball

Big runs expected, with bat and ball

Royal Challengers Bangalore: Their main concern, once again, is the fast bowling More »

Black Caps pick rookie duo for West Indies

Black Caps pick rookie duo for West Indies

New Zealand selectors included two new caps in a 15-man Test squad named Tuesday to tour the West Indies, with injury-hit spinner Dan Vettori's future… More »

The stage is set for IPL-7 to start

The stage is set for IPL-7 to start

The Preview — Defending champions Mumbai Indians take on Kolkata Knight Riders More »

Srinivasan appeals to court to allow BCCI comeback

Srinivasan appeals to court to allow BCCI comeback

He was aggrieved by the allegations against him during the hearing. More »

Klinger on his exit from South Australia

Klinger on his exit from South Australia

Michael Klinger has revealed he felt compelled to leave South Australia after being told he would be only a fringe part of the Redbacks' plans for next season, and disputed the suggestion that he left… More »

India: cricket's Brazil

India: cricket's Brazil

They are tough to beat with a big talent base exposed to good facilities. (CYCSPL) More »

Delhi Daredevils say no to gifts

Delhi Daredevils say no to gifts

Franchises are doing their bit to refurbish the image of the tainted league. More »

India-Pakistan Test series likely in 2015

India-Pakistan Test series likely in 2015

The revival of Indo-Pak Test ties could take place in UAE. More »

Kohli hopes to end RCB trophy drought

Kohli hopes to end RCB trophy drought

'This time around we will hope to go few more steps ahead and actually get that trophy' More »

Gavaskar can help IPL regain glory

Gavaskar can help IPL regain glory

Apart from the foreign players a lot of behind-the-scene activity has taken place in selecting the Indian domestic players. More »

Tendulkar, Ganguly to promote soccer

Tendulkar, Ganguly to promote soccer

Leading Spanish club Atletico Madrid and former cricketers Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly are among the owners of eight franchises of a new Indian… More »

This isn’t my first trip to India: Neesham

This isn’t my first trip to India: Neesham

Kiwi all-rounder wants to utilise the India leg to explore the country’s tourist attractions. More »

Ishant wanted to quit ODIs

Ishant wanted to quit ODIs

Says his mother made him change his mind. More »