Klopp praises Weinzierl ahead of clash

Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp has paid tribute to his Augsburg counterpart Markus Weinzierl ahead of Saturday's Bundesliga clash between the sides.

Markus Weinzierl, Jurgen Klopp

Klopp's men are pushing for second place and a berth in the Champions League next season while Weinzierl's men are currently five points adrift of safety at the bottom of the table.

Despite the gap between the two sides in the table, Klopp knows that Augsburg are stronger than their current position suggests, not least thanks to their form in the second half of the season which he believes is the work of their coach.

"My colleague there has done a fantastic job," he said. "For me, he's the coach of this first half of the year.

"He has really made the best decisions and has a very good team, very flexible and dangerous in front of goal.

"I think everybody has had problems against them, even Hannover last weekend don't have any idea how they managed to beat them.

"They are going to want the three points with all their might so we've got to be prepared for that."

The game comes sandwiched in between a Champions League quarter-final tie with Malaga and Klopp's biggest job will be to get his side focused on the task in hand.

Dortmund are currently 10 points clear of fourth-placed Schalke and defending that gap between now and the end of the season is a priority.

"We want to achieve something," said Klopp. "Just because we cannot win the title doesn't mean we have no aims.

"It's a game between one team high in the league with aims and one team low down with aims, but we've seen how small the difference is in this division."

Mats Hummels could make a return to the Dortmund side after injury with he and Patrick Owomoyela facing late fitness tests.

Augsburg are without the injured Ja-Cheol Koo and Michael Parkhurst, but they are not going to be beaten before they even set off for Dortmund.

"We are going there with courage and we want to come back from Dortmund with something," said Weinzierl.

"We know we need an absolutely top-drawer performance, but we are up for it.

"We just need to play like we did against Hannover, but then we need to score the decisive goals."

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