Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Monchengladbach – 10:30PM (Friday)
It’s getting hotter in places below leaders, Bayern Munich, as teams occupying the next five places change positions almost every weekend, thanks to their inconsistence.
Last week, Bayer Leverkusen skipped a number of positions to go second when they defeated collapsing TSG Hoffenheim. RB Leipzig fell to SC Freiburg, but Schalke 04 did less service to themselves for an advantage when they drew at home to Hannover 96.
Four teams are now level 31-points as Dortmund are once again condemned to sixth place, just a point less of the second and fifth placed sides.
Tonight, the chase for European football continues as Frankfurt and Bayer Leverkusen face off at the Waldstadion.
While Frankfurt continue to impress away from Home, (only bettered by Bayern Munich, this season), they have seemingly struggled at home (won two and taking nine points from as many games).
According to Bundesliga.com, Niko Kovac spoke this week of his desire to rectify that disappointing run, and could field the same side that was impressive in beating Wolfsburg 3-1 last time out.
However, he still has many injuries which will see him without David Abraham and Alex Meier, who is expected to resume training next week.
Meanwhile, Dieter Hecking’s men recovered from a 2-1 defeat neighbors Koln to defeat Augsburg 2-0 last weekend.
Thorgan Hazard was once again outstanding in that fixture, so is set to start again here alongside attacking partners in crime Lars Stindl and Raffael. The big news for the visitors is that central midfielder Christoph Kramer has recovered from illness and been declared fit to play.
Twenty-year-old English defender Mandela Egbo is also set to be included in the match-day squad for the first time.
Borussia Dortmund v SC Freiburg – 5:00PM (Saturday)
SC Freiburg will turn guns against troubled side, Borussia Dortmund as they continue with a fine run to recovery.
Borussia Dortmund will have a bigger test this weekend when they host SC Freiburg at the Signal Iduna Park. Peter Stoger came out of the winter break with back-to-back draws. They will continue to miss the services of want away striker, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and will need a quick fix to find the rhythm they had found against Mainz and Hoffenheim.
Freiburg are unbeaten in seven straight league matches and climbed out of the relegation zone as a result of their impressive run. They beat RB Leipzig last weekend and have continued to show improvements on the attack.
Christian Streich has not lost any of his last three away matches and this could push Dortmund further below European football places should they fail to handle the situation and play in a similar fashion like it was against Hertha last week.
In the other fixtures, leaders Bayern Munich host Hoffenheim and will be confident of all three points at the Allianz Arena on Saturday.
Meanwhile, second placed Bayer Leverkusen may have to shelve the weight of the drop should Gldbach, RB Leipzig, and Schalke come victorious against Frankfurt, Hannover and VfB Stuttgart respectively. Leverkusen take on Mainz on Sunday.
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Fixture listings – week 20.
Frankfurt v Monchengladbach – 22:30PM
Dortmund v SC Freiburg – 5:30PM
RB Leipzig v Hamburger SV – 5:30PM
FC Köln v FC Augsburg – 5:30PM
Bayern v Hoffenheim – 5:30PM
VfB Stuttgart v Schalke 04 – 5:30PM
Werder v Hertha – 8:30PM
Bayer v Mainz – 5:30PM
Hannover 96 v Wolfsburg – 8:00PM