Dortmund’s Götze unlikely to make Hamburg meeting

Dortmund’s Götze unlikely to make Hamburg meeting

BERLIN - Reuters
Dortmund’s Götze unlikely to make Hamburg meeting

Germany and Dortmund wonder boy Mario Götze, 19, will miss his team’s trip to Hamburg in the German Bundesliga. AP photo

Champions Borussia Dortmund suffered a setback as it resumed its chase of Bundesliga leader Bayern Munich after the winter break when midfielder Mario Götze was all but ruled out of weekend’s game at Hamburg SV.

Second-place Dortmund could also be without keeper Roman Weidenfeller and defender Lukasz Piszczek for the match, which it could start six points behind Bayern, who takes on fourth-placed Borussia Moenchengladbach tonight.

“Mario’s chances of playing are about four percent,” Dortmund coach Jürgen Klopp told reporters yesterday.

The 19-year-old has been a driving force in Dortmund’s recovery after a bad start to the season. The Dortmund coach will be hoping in-form Gladbach, fresh from its best first half of the
season in 35 years, will repeat its season-opening surprise win over Bayern (1-0).

“We need to go in and stay on edge for 90 minutes if we are to leave the pitch as winners,” said leading Gladbach forward Marco Reus, who has already agreed to join Dortmund at the end of the season.

With Franck Ribery suspended for the game, Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes, himself brimming with confidence after his team’s winter training camp in Qatar, is expected to utilise Toni Kroos on the left wing.

Fellow midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger will also make a comeback after being out for more than two months following shoulder surgery. “I’m ready and raring to go,” he said.