Dortmund striker Füllkrug claims Italian sides ‘sit deep and defend with patience’

By Oliver Fisher -

Borussia Dortmund striker Niclas Füllkrug believes that playing in front of a home crowd will be an advantage for his side against AC Milan tomorrow night.

At 30 years of age Füllkrug earned himself a move to Dortmund during the summer window, after he scored 16 goals and added six assists for Werder Bremen last season. He even drew links with Milan given they were in the market for a striker as well.

At the beginning of the 2022–23 Bundesliga season, he scored 10 goals in 14 matches which was enough to convince Hansi Flick to call him up for the German national team squad for the World Cup in November.

Füllkrug spoke at a press conference on the eve of the match against Milan and his comments were relayed by our colleagues at, who are in Dortmund to cover the game.

“I think we have excellent defenders in our league, very physical. The Italian sides sit deep and defend with patience. We will prepare as best we can. We have our strategy and our ideas. With the right concentration we can play with everyone,” he said.

“I’m happy we won the last three games. It will be a fantastic experience. We scored points in the league, last year we did well. We developed in a certain direction, many said that we did it unconsciously, we were criticised.

“But we have mental and self-confidence, which is very important. We played well against Hoffenheim and it shows us that we can have confidence in ourselves. We have excellent players. Winning is always nice.

“It will be a different match here, I’m happy to be here, it will be special. I don’t think about the advantages, it matters how you deal with it.

“We must try to win. I don’t think about it [the pressure of playing at home]. It will be a fantastic experience for me. Even my team-mates told me that it will be more special than the Bundesliga.”

Tags AC Milan Niclas Fullkrug


  1. LMAO!!! What a clown. I bet he hasn’t watched a minute of Serie A… If that’s what he thinks he’ll face, then he’s in for a huge surprise.

  2. Milan does well against teams that open up like bvb.. Sit deep and defend with patience? Milan hasnt been good at that since Max was the coach

  3. People getting upset at what this guy said because it’s true. With few exceptions, Italian sides do sit back and defend.
    Inter literally got to.the UCL final last year with that strategy.
    They are beating Milan in every derby with that strategy.
    Roma got in back to back euro finals, winning one, with that strategy.
    Juventus plays like that.
    With the exception of Milan and Napoli, the other Italian teams sit back, defend and try to hit you on the counter.
    Whoever this guy is, he is right.

      1. They did, until Pulisic scored to put them down 1-0, forcing them to open up
        That was a big part of why the first half was such a struggle for Milan

  4. English and Germans barely watch Serie A then make outdated statements like this. Not all teams play catenaccio. Just a year or two ago, Serie A led all the top leagues in Europe in goals scored.

  5. Lol you guys. It’s obvious what they all try to do…make the game more open which suits them. You want to say these things to rile up the opponent to come out of their shells and based on the comments if the players are anything like that then they’ve succeeded. You always say the other team does the opposite to what you want.
    People have been doing this for years. This ain’t my first rodeo. Gattuso said Liverpool only played long balls leading up to the 2007 finals, And Pool ended up minimizing their long balls which actually did not suit their game.

  6. I don’t know why other Milan fans are upset with his opinion. What’s wrong with playing compact and deep when defending? I don’t have a problem with that. Playing deep defense when defending doesn’t mean we always play defensive during the match. And playing solid defense is part of Italian football’s identity. We’ve had a lot of success with that strategy. So why should we be embarrassed?

  7. Inter sometimes counter attack but still score a ton of goals,Milan and napoli and atalanta as well. Fiorentina are ultra aggressive and lazio are neutral. Roma and Juve are the only defensive teams

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