‘Battle Of The Borussias’ Headlines Bundesliga Last Round Of Fixtures Ahead 2022 World Cup Kickoff
Serge Gnabry will look to finish up in style with FC Bayern Munich on Bundesliga Matchday 15 before joining up with the likes of Mario Götze, Niclas Füllkrug and Youssoufa Moukoko on FIFA World Cup duty with Germany.
Gnabry got a hat-trick in the defending champions’ 6-1 thumping of SV WerderBremen on Tuesday, meaning the 27-year-old (with seven goals) is only behind Jamal Musiala (nine goals) in Bayern’s Bundesliga scoring chart this season.
Both players are in the Germany squad for this month’s World Cup, but beforeleaving for Qatar they will be eyeing up more goals when Bayern travel to bottom club FC Schalke 04 on Saturday evening.
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Julian Nagelsmann’s team have won their last nine matches in all competitions andare four points ahead of both 1. FC Union Berlin and SC Freiburg at the top of the table. Bayern will be targeting a tenth Bundesliga win of the campaign this weekend, but Schalke have been boosted by picking up just their second – against 1. FSV Mainz 05 – on Wednesday.
Borussia Dortmund, meanwhile, have dropped to sixth after their 2-0 defeat at VfL Wolfsburg. They are still only six points behind Bayern, though, and could move up the standings when they open Matchday 15 at Borussia Monchengladbach tonight [Friday] – battle of the Borussias.
All eyes will be on 17-year-old Moukoko for that one, after the six-goal attacker was named on Thursday by Hansi Flick in Germany’s 26-man World Cup squad.
Midtable Gladbach will also be worried about facing England star Jude Bellingham, especially after a midweek reverse at VfL Bochum 1848 which means they have now lost three of their last four. All five of the home side’s wins have come in front of their own support, however.
On Saturday afternoon plenty of interested observers will be tuning into Bremen’s home match with RB Leipzig. Not just because it’s the meeting of seventh and fifth, but also to see what all the fuss is about with Füllkrug. Like Moukoko, the 29-year-old has received his first-ever call-up to the senior Germany set-up, which should boost his confidence even further after getting 10 league goals this season.
Leipzig, though, are unbeaten in their last 12 matches in all competitions and have won their last five. They have their own star attacker to boast about too, with Christopher Nkunku on target seven times in his last six matches. The Bundesliga’s leading goalscorer netted his 12th of the campaign in Wednesday’s 3-1 victory over Freiburg.
Another speedy France international attacker will also be out to continue a scoring streak in the Bundesliga on Saturday. Moussa Diaby has three goals in his last two outings for Bayer 04 Leverkusen, with Xabi Alonso’s team making it back-to-back wins after getting the better of local rivals 1. FC Köln in midweek.
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Starting the weekend in 13th, they’ll look to continue their improvement against a team just two places and one point below them. VfB Stuttgart will be on a high when they visit, though, after getting an injury-time winner against Hertha Berlin last time out.
Also on Saturday, third-bottom Hertha are in need of three points at home to mid table FC Cologne, while TSG Hoffenheim are out to end a four-game winless run in the Bundesliga when they face a Wolfsburg side that have won their last three. FC Augsburg in 14th won’t want to drop any closer to the relegation zone when they take on second bottom Bochum.
On Sunday, Gotze will have the chance to show why he could now earn his first cap for Germany in five years. His Eintracht Frankfurt team beat Hoffenheim 4-2 at home in midweek and – having broken into the top four as a result – they’ll fancy their chances at out-of-form Mainz in their shortest Bundesliga away trip of the season.
Last but not least there’s a cracking match in store when Freiburg and Union meet. Those two are separated only by goal difference behind Bayern at the moment and will be looking to crown a superb year with a final victory.
In Bundesliga 2, meanwhile, second-placed Hamburger SV host third-bottom SV Sandhausen on Saturday. League leaders SV Darmstadt 98 are home to midtable SpVgg Greuther Fürth on Sunday.
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