Wolfsburg keen to test stuttering Schalke

Wolfsburg coach Dieter Hecking hopes his side's DFB-Pokal win over Kickers Offenbach in midweek can be the spark to ignite the remainder of their season.

Wolfsburg's equalizer!

The Wolves host Schalke before learning who they will face in the semi-finals of the cup with a trip to Berlin just one game away.

However, they are only nine points clear of the Bundesliga relegation zone, so there is still a lot of work to be done in and Hecking hopes his team can now build up a head of steam starting with the visit of Schalke to the VW-Arena.

"The win over the Kickers was very important in the context of the second half of the season," he said.

"The important thing now is that we keep the three points here tomorrow [Saturday]."

Given Schalke's dip in form at the start of the year, that would not seem to be such a difficult task on paper, yet the Royal Blues have shown some signs of a recovery recently, not least with a 1-1 draw away to Galatasaray in the Champions League.

"There is a clear upwards trend recognisable," said Hecking at a press conference.

"Schalke are regaining momentum and, as a Champions League last-16 side, they are a big challenge for us.

"We are looking forward to an attractive home game and we want to keep the three points here with the help of our fans."

Schalke appear to have turned the corner with a run of three games unbeaten, giving them confidence for their trip to Wolfsburg.

"We're going to Wolfsburg to get points," said their under-fire coach Jens Keller.

"We've got to take the positives from our recent games and repeat them."

Keller is still without the injured Ibrahim Afellay, Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Ciprian Marica and Atsuto Uchida.

Christian Fuchs is back in training, on the other hand, while Roman Neustadter has recovered from a flu virus.



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