News broke today that Borussia Dortmund's star attacking midfielder Mario Götze will miss out on Saturday's UEFA Champions League final with a hamstring injury. The immediate question that comes to mind is what will Jürgen Klopp do to adjust to the loss of the anchor of his attack.
Our Bayern Munich blog Bavarian Football Works was wondering the same thing, even before Götze's status was made official. They took a look at Dortmund's options for filling the gap left in the central midfield by the absence of the soon to be Bayern star.
We can probably safely assume they are going to play their normal 4-2-3-1. With this being the game of the year, the wide attacking midfielders are going to be first choice, meaning it Marco Rues is going to play left and Jakub Blaszczykowski is going to play on the right. While Marco Reus played attacking midfield following Gotze departure in Madrid, as well as in their defeat to Hoffenheim over the weekend, the fleet flooted German international thrives best while drifting and playing fast counterattacking soccer. While Reus is capable of playing this role, the two most recent attempts both ended in defeat for Borussia Dortmund, and given that the opponent in this particular match has quite possibly the strongest holding midfield in the time space continuum, Dortmund is most likely going to have to go with the alternate option of Ilkay Gundogan. If I'm wrong, I'll eat my hat, provided first you bake me one made out of cake.
For me, moving Ilkay Gundogan forward makes a lot of sense both because he can play the CAM position and because Dortmund have the experienced Sebastian Kehl who can slide into a deep midfield role alongside Sven Bender. If Klopp is more adventures, he could also go with Nuri Sahin.
Whatever the BV manager decides to do will be heavily scrutinized, especially if Bayern slice them apart and lift the trophy.