By Oliver Trust
BERLIN, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- The upcoming German classico inspires the masses as not only the two leading football sides will be crossing swords but the two best strikers will enter into a thrilling duel.
Millions of fans might gather in front of TVs as spectator numbers in the Dortmund and other arenas are strictly limited due to the rising COVID-19 infection numbers.
While bars and pubs face a new lockdown, supporters are eager to see the actions of Erling Haaland and Robert Lewandowski from a safe distance.
The encounter between the Black and Yellows and the Bavarians has developed from the prestige duel of past years into a nail-biting issue. Its outcome is said to effect this season's race for the national title.
Haaland so far ended up at 14 scorer points (10 goals/four assists in seven games) has Lewandowski reached the top (15/1 in 13 games).
The duo not only stands for the Bundesliga's most prominent stars but currently is said to keep several sporting directors in top European sides busy.
While the 2020 treble winner is optimistic to extend the Polish team captain until 2023 valid contract, it seems Dortmund have accepted the departure of Haaland next summer.
For now, the return of the spearhead has triggered a new enthusiasm in Dortmund.
Statistics back fans' expectations of a successful return of the Black and Yellows.
Without Haaland, Dortmund created only 39 chances compared to 59 with the forward around. The number of goals decreased from 21 to 12.
Confidence is back after Haaland's successful recovery efforts with Dutch personal trainer John Haddad. "They can come, we are ready," Dortmund's CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke stated.
Haaland's participation is turning things into a serious issue for Bayern, German striker icon Miroslav Klose stated.
"His return is more than a significant push for Dortmund's team," the former German international said. According to Klose, Bayern is going to change his approach due to the Norwegian's status as a likely member of Borussia's starting eleven.
50 goals in 50 national league games might deliver an idea of Haaland's importance for Dortmund. A murmur went through the Wolfsburg arena when Haaland prepared for the last 15 minutes against Wolfsburg. As promised, he scored a goal in the dying minutes.
"He went through an enormous amount of recovery work over the past days to be around for the classico. He loves things like that; he is a fearless man," Borussia's Belgian defender Tomas Meunier commented.
With Haaland having scored three goals in his three games against Bayern, the club hopes the Norwegian's energy is lasting over 90 minutes.
The blond spearhead seems a specialist when it comes to scoring in the last 20 minutes. Six of his 10 season goals happened after the 70th minute.