High stakes for Freiburg against Hoffenheim

The stakes are high for the Baden-Wurttemberg derby between Freiburg and Hoffenheim on Saturday.


Just four points separate the two sides in the Bundesliga table going into the game, and those points currently mean the difference between safety and a relegation play-off.

Freiburg are occupying the latter role, but they are keen to build on their last appearance at the Dreisamstadion, which ended in a 3-2 win over Bayer Leverkusen, even if coach Christian Streich does not expect there to be as many goals this weekend.

"I don't think so, but it can always happen that individual errors play a role," he said.

"More than anything, I hope that Hoffenheim score fewer."

That may be a vain hope, considering the goalscoring exploits of their local rivals.

Only Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund have scored more than Markus Gisdol's men this season, and they put three past Freiburg at home.

They also conceded three in that game while only Hamburg have let in more than Hoffenheim all season.

"They are a team with extraordinary quality in their attack," recognised Streich, who will not know right up until kick-off which players his side will be up against.

His Hoffenheim counterpart Markus Gisdol is keeping his cards close to his chest.

"We've got to remain flexible and sometimes Roberto (Firmino) is more suited to the game when he is further forward," he said.

"I'll see what my last impressions are from training and that will make up my mind. It's possible that we don't change anything."

Fabian Johnson should keep his place, despite revealing on Thursday that he will be leaving the club in the summer.

"We fought hard for him and it's a shame he's leaving," said Gisdol at a press conference. "But he has promised that he will give his all to the very end, and there is no reason for us to doubt that."

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