Relegation Looms For Hamburg And Koln As Schalke Look To Seal Champions League Spot

Pius Serugo

Pius Serugo

, Bundesliga

The fight for survival continues at the bottom and this weekend could see two sides relegated should both fail to find all three points. Bottom side Cologne will need to win all their remaining three matches and hope other results go their way to survive. They start the ‘impossible dream’ with a visit to SC Freiburg today.

Hamburg SV are also not far away from Koln when in the fight against the drop. ‘The only founding members of the Bundesliga never to be relegated may soon have to take down their famous clock this weekend.’

Der Dinosaurie face a do-or-die clash at Wolfsburg with an ‘all three points’ result the only realistic option to their quest. If they lose, they could lead their way into the second tier but a win could leave them to die another day.

Elsewhere, the fight for the fourth Champions League spot continues this weekend as Hoffenheim’s 3-1 win over Hannover yesterday piled more pressure on Werkself who host VfB Stuttgart on Sunday.

Hoffenheim beat Hamburg 3-1 to leapfrog Bayer Leverkusen into fourth. Getty Images

The win left Leverkusen in fifth place and will have to win by all means if they are to beat the two point gap back into top four.

Do not miss Schalke 04 v Borussia Monchengladbach Live on Sanyuka TV and Sports Focus – StarTimes.

Schalke have recently been on a rough road winning only won one of their last three matches and are already in danger of losing second spot to arch-rivals Dortmund if they continue to drop points.

However, they will  edge closer to securing second spot with a victory at home against Borussia Monchengladbach. It’s advantage to them playing at home where they have won four straight matches and could secure a Champions League spot with another victory here.

Gladbach still have a slim chance of qualifying for the Europa League having won two of their last three matches however, a trip to Schalke could be too much for the side that has lost seven of their last nine away games.

Dieter Hecking has confirmed that Fabian Johnson is unlikely to play again this season as he works his way back from a long-term injury.

French-Senegalese Defender, Mamadou Doucoure and Julio Villalba remain sidelined with thigh injuries as Patrick Herrmann and Raúl Bobadilla continue to nurse ankle and muscle tear injuries respectively

Meanwhile, Domenico Tedesco only has Sebian midfilder, Matija Nastasic (knee) and Breel Embolo (thigh) out of this tie

 

Match stats

  • A win will guarantee Schalke UEFA Champions League football next season. If they come second to Bayern Munich, it would be the club’s seventh runners-up finish.
  • Gladbach’s hopes of a place in the top six — and UEFA Europa League qualification — depend on them improving their away form. They have picked up just 15 points from 15 trips this season.
  • The short trip to Gelsenkirchen does not usually end happily though: Schalke have won 13 of their last 17 home fixtures with the Foals, and lost one in 21.
  • If Dieter Hecking celebrates his 50th Bundesliga game in charge of Gladbach with all three points, it would be his first maximum haul in 11 Bundesliga matches against Schalke.
  • Schalke have scored at least once in each of their last 25 league games, the longest streak in the Bundesliga currently, and the Royal Blues’ second-longest ever.
  • The home side are the set-piece kings of the Bundesliga with 22 goals from dead-ball situations this season. Gladbach are the third-best with 15 strikes.

Probable line-ups

Schalke: 3-4-1-2

Ralph Fährmann (c); Stambouli – Nalado – Thilo Kehrer ; Caligiuri – Leon Goretzka – Weston McKennie – Oczipka; Amine Harit; Guido Burgstaller -Franco Di Santo

Coach: Domenico Tedesco

Gladbach: 3-5-2

Yann Sommer; Nico Elvedi – Matthias Ginter -Jannik Vestergaard; Oscar Wendt – Jonas Hofmann – Kramer – Denis Zakaria – Hazard; Lars Stindl (c) – Raffael

Coach: Dieter Hecking

Do not miss the Bundesliga on StarTimes, please follow the fixture listing below for the Bundesliga matches this weekend.

Saturday April 28

All playing at 4:30PM

FC Schalke 04 v Borussia M’gladbach

Sport-Club Freiburg v 1. FC Köln

VfL Wolfsburg v Hamburger SV

Bayern Munich v Eintracht Frankfurt

Hertha BSC v FC Augsburg

Bayer 04 Leverkusen v VfB Stuttgart – 7:30PM

Sunday April 29

FSV Mainz 05 v RB Leipzig – 4:30PM

SV Werder Bremen v Borussia Dortmund – 7:00PM

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