What not to miss in the Bundesliga this week

Round 26 of the Bundesliga promises to deliver drama on an epic scale as there are plots and sub plots in almost every game. All 18 teams are in action this weekend. We take a close look at all the match-ups.

In the weekend’s first fixture, Hertha Berlin (LWWDL) strengthened their grip on third spot in the standings with a 2-0 win over FC Schalke 04 (WWDDL) at the Olympic Stadium.

VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach (LWDWL) clash with Eintracht Frankfurt (DLDDL) at 22:30pm on Saturday (HKT). The venue will be Borussia-Park. A win will mean the world to both teams, but for entirely different reasons.

While three points is all that lies between Mönchengladbach and a spot in the top four, Frankfurt are sitting at the wrong end of the table in 16th position.

The Eagles will be managed by Niko Kovac for the first time and he will hope someone can score a goal in the absence of Alexander Meier who is unavailable. André Schubert will want Raffael Caetano de Araújo to continue his superb season which has been littered with goals.

FC Augsburg (DLDWL), who occupy 15th place, travel to Merck-Stadion am Böllenfalltor to do battle with SV Darmstadt 98(DLDLL), who occupy 14th place. The game kicks-off at 22:30pm on Saturday (HKT).

This is a bottom-of-the-table match-up and it could be a scrappy affair as both sides have been struggling for form lately. Darmstadt have not scored a goal in over 180 minutes of league football and will be desperate for Sandro Wagner to score his 10th of the season. Augsburg have had problems of an entirely different nature having conceded 10 goals in their last five outings. They will need a strong performance from Marwin Hitz between the posts.

Squad! ?????? #FCA #D98FCA #fcaugsburg A photo posted by FC Augsburg (@fcaugsburg1907) on

Hannover 96 (LLWLL) appear to be rooted to the bottom of the Bundesliga with only 17 points from 25 games. They will need to start recording victories sooner rather than later if they are to stand any chance of avoiding the drop. Saturday will see an opportunity presented to them to do just that as they host a 1. FC Köln (LDLLW) outfit who are very low on confidence after only claiming one point from their last four matches.

Players to watch are Kenan Karaman (Hannover) who is an exciting 22-year-old forward and French powerhouse Anthony Modeste (Köln) who has 11 league goals to his name this campaign. The match starts at 22:30pm (HKT) and will be played at Niedersachsenstadion. 

TSG 1899 Hoffenheim (LWLWD) entertain VfL Wolfsburg (WWLDW) at the Rhein-Neckar Arena on Saturday at 22:30pm (HKT). Hoffenheim will be smarting after they were humiliated by VfB Stuttgart in a crushing 5-1 defeat in their last game. Julian Nagelsmann is a proud man and will expect a massive response from his side as they attempt to climb out of the relegation zone.

Wolfsburg will simply be hoping for more of the same as they will be keen on extending their two-game winning streak. Julian Draxler scored for the Die Wölfe in their win against Mönchengladbach and will be out to add to his tally for the season.

While FC Ingolstadt 04 (DDDWL) and VfL Stuttgart (WLLDW) are both seemingly safe in mid-table at present, neither can afford to take anything for granted going into the season finale and will therefore go all out for victory when they meet on Saturday at Audi-Sportpark at 22:30pm (HKT). Georg Niedermeier will look to build on his unlikely brace for the Die Roten in their impressive 5-1 win against Hoffenheim.

Trinkpause! #Schanzer #Training #Heimspielwoche #workhard #FCIVFB   A photo posted by FC Ingolstadt 04 Offiziell (@dieschanzer) on

It’s hard to see how SV Werder Bremen (WWDLD) are going to get anything out of their game against FC Bayern München (DLWWW) as the latter make their way to the Weserstadion.

Bayern are five points clear at the top and have been in devastating form this season with Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller sharing 40 goals between themselves. Kick-off is at 01:30am on Sunday (HKT).

Kung-Fu-Theo! ?? #Werder #Training #nordphoto   A photo posted by SV Werder Bremen (@werderbremen) on

Eighth plays 10th when Hamburger SV (WLDDW) commute to Bayer 04 Leverkusen’s (DLLLW) very own Bay Arena. Leverkusen are on a horrible slide having not won in four games while Hamburg were mightily impressive in their last outing where they beat Berlin 2-0 courtesy of a brace from Nicolai Muller. The latter are looking strong for this one. The encounter starts at 22:30pm (HKT) on Sunday.

After a sturdy display against Bayern that earned Borussia Dortmund (DWWWW) a draw last weekend, Thomas Tuchel’s men will be intent on keeping the pressure on the leaders by beating 1. FSV Mainz 05 (DWWLW) at the Westfalenstadion on Monday morning at 00:30am (HKT), as Tuchel returns to the club where he made his name.

Something that will play into Mainz’s hands will be their opponents’ midweek game against Tottenham Hotspur which is bound to have taken a lot out of them. Die Nullfünfer’s catalyst, Yunus Malli, will need to be at his best if his side are too stand any chance of furthering their pursuit of entering the top-three. He has already netted 10 league goals in the 2015/2016 season.