1. FC Köln: After the good performance and draw against Borussia Dortmund, FC were hoping to continue that against VfL Wolfsburg. However, despite creating multiple chances, the Wolves came away with a 1:0 win as FC lost ground on the teams around them. This week’s match is vitally important as the run in begins to gather pace, with just seven games between now and the end of the season.
1. FSV Mainz 05: Despite the draw against Arminia Bielefeld last weekend, Mainz can be very happy with their recent form. Under Bo Svensson’s tutelage, following his return to the club from Red Bull Salzburg, he has picked up 19 points from 13 games. Aside from the top four, only VfB Stuttgart have done better in the same timeframe. The wins against Gladbach, Leipzig and Union were particularly impressive.
Markus Gisdol: “We have seen in what manner and how Mainz are trying to play football. They have tried to go back to their old virtues lately. They always put in a lot of effort with how they play. We have to take the right things from our analysis, so that we don’t let the opponent come into the game. It is a game between two teams who have had similar problems this season.”
Bo Svensson: “I think that we, as a team, have made progress in all areas. But we can continue to improve. We're not at the end of the development yet. I expect an aggressive Köln team, a fast-paced game with a lot of battles. The way the relegation battle should be, seven games before the end of the season.”
1. FC Köln: Sebastiaan Bornauw returned to training this week as he steps up his recovery from injury. Jan Thielmann is receiving treatment for his muscle problems. Otherwise, the return of Florian Kainz and Sebastian Andersson last week was positive news on the fitness front.
1. FSV Mainz 05: Luca Kilian could miss the remainder of the season after his thigh injury turned out to be worse than anticipated. Despite concerns over Daniel Brosinski and Danny da Costa, both look set be part of the squad this weekend.
Robert Glatzel is back in Germany, albeit on loan, after a tough start to life in Wales with Cardiff. The Bluebirds brought in Glatzel after 13 goals in 26 league games for Heidenheim in the 2018-19 season, as well as a hat-trick against Bayern Munich in the DFB-Pokal. Glatzel has taken to life well in Mainz, with two goals and an assist in his first eight games. Those goal contributions have earned Bo Svensson’s side five points. In those eight matches, Mainz average almost two points per game.
1. FC Köln have never lost a Bundesliga home game to Mainz before and will be hoping to continue that record today. FC picked up a rare away win in Mainz in the first fixture between the sides this season and the visitors will certainly want to avenge that. The meeting last term was the first after the pandemic-enforced pause. That game finished 2:2.
Referee: Dr. Felix Brych (München).Assistant referees: Mark Borsch, Stefan Lupp.Fourth official: Dr. Martin Thomsen.Video Assistant Referee: Benjamin Brand.
€ 49.99 *