Another week, another 2. Bundesliga preview! Here is all you need to know for matchday 20 in the second division.
Friday 21st January - all kick-offs 18:30 local
Hamburger SV vs FC St. Pauli
The new weekend of 2. Bundesliga action starts off with a Hamburg derby. Not a bad start to the weekend.
Hamburger SV hoped for a banker win last weekend in Dresden, but if the poor start was anything to go by, it wasn't to be a simple Friday evening. In truth, the start was dismal, allowing a Dynamo Dresden team -- who were trounced 3-0 by bottom club Ingolstadt a game earlier -- multiple early chances. Yannick Stark had the best from the early Dynamo pressure, his attempt was saved in the right corner of the goal. HSV grew into the match, and found the goal later into the first half. Ransford-Yeboah Königsdörffer's effort from outside the box was blocked, allowing Hamburger SV to go to the races. The quick counter-attack led to a Robert Glatzel chip over the goalkeeper, 1-0 HSV. Dresden never gave up in the second half, and after 14 shots, they finally scored. The ball was whipped in perfectly by Julius Kade and was met by the head of Christoph Daferner, a goal which was totally deserved. There was to be no more goals after that, HSV gained their 10th draw of the season, 3 more than Karlsruhe who have drawn the second most amount of games in the league this season (7). HSV did have some success in the DFB-Pokal in midweek, and defeated Bundesliga side 1. FC Köln on penalties afer a 1-1 draw in 120 minutes of action.
FC St. Pauli will also be playing their second match in three days after the DFB-Pokal heroic victory against Borussia Dortmund. They are currently not in what you would say is 'title-winning form' as they've failed to win in their last three 2. Bundesliga outings, only collecting two out of a possible nine points. Before the winter break, Timo Schulz and St. Pauli were outclassed in Kiel, losing 3-0 in the port city. Then, they failed to beat Erzgebirge Aue at the Millerntor. Ben Zolinski and Nikola Trujic must've thought they'd taken all the points away from St. Pauli, but forward Etienne Amenyido's 93rd minute goal won back a point for FCSP. There was a VAR check on the Amenyido goal -- with a tight offside -- but it was decided onside. St. Pauli never led against Aue and that must've given coach Timo Schultz some worrying thoughts, but those thoughts would've been resolved after the inspiring victory against the cup holders Dortmund.
Although some people portray 'Sankt Pauli' as the little brother in Hamburg, they actually have the overall head-to-head record over their rivals HSV. They have beaten Hamburger SV five times, HSV have beaten St. Pauli three times, with two draws. St. Pauli are still top of the 2. Bundesliga with 37 points, one ahead of Darmstadt 98. They have a four point cushion to 3rd-placed Heidenheim. Hamburger SV are 5th in the table after two consecutive draws. Interestingly, St. Pauli are on course to finish ahead of HSV in a domestic season for the first time in their history.
Hamburger SV: Heuer Fernandes - Heyer, Vuskovic, Schonlau, Muheim - Meffert - Reis, Kittel - Jatta, Glatzel, Alidou
FC St. Pauli: Vasilj - Zander, Medic, J. Lawrence, Paqarada - Smith - Becker, Hartel - Irvine - Burgstaller, Amenyido
Fortuna Düsseldorf vs 1. FC Nürnberg
The other Friday match is very interesting.
Fortuna Düsseldorf were beaten by a resurgent Werder Bremen team last week, but it wasn't until Kristoffer Peterson's 58th minute red card. From that moment onwards, Bremen dominated. They had close to 70% of the football, with 5 shots on goal. With the nature of Werder Bremen's recent efficiency in front of goal, they managed to end the match with another high scoring victory. Niclas Füllkrug netted twice, the first being a powerful header. The second was a defensive mistake from Oberdorf, giving the ball straight to Marvin Ducksch, he ran through and simply passed the ball on the other side of the box to Füllkrug, and he slotted the ball home. Ducksch had a goal himself, a brilliant pass from Schmid gave Ducksch a great chance in the box, he placed it home and Bremen ran away with it. Fortuna are now winless and scoreless in their last two league matches.
1. FC Nürnberg faced the best away team in the division in Paderborn last week, but they also faced a team that was without a win in 5 matches. The first half was fairly even for the most part, but Sven Michel's fantastic chip over FCN keeper Mathenia opened the scoring. The floodlights were off after that, and Paderborn managed to find another before the half. Sven Michel did all the work for Felix Platte, as Michel's sheer determination got him to the byline and the cross was inch-perfect for Platte, who scored his 7th second division goal in 14 matches. Nürnberg put the pressure on Paderborn in the second half, as the home side had 8 shots, but only managed 2 on target. One of those was a goal, Pascal Köpke's cross found Mats Moller Daehli at the back post, and FCN had half an hour to find another goal. They nearly did, and probably should've. In the final minute of the match, the ball fell to an unmarked Asger Sorenson, and he blazed the ball well over. The central defender had a real central defender effort and Paderborn held on by the skin of their teeth.
Fortuna Düsseldorf and 1. FC Nürnberg have faced each other 16 times in all competitions. The Bavarians have the advantage with 9 wins against Fortuna, Düsseldorf have 5 wins and there have been 2 draws. Fortuna Düsseldorf could count themselves in a relegation fight currently, they are only 3 points ahead of 16th Sandhausen. Whereas, FC Nürnberg are in the promotion fight and currently sit 9th. Although 9th seems like mid-table, they are only one victory behind 3rd-placed Heidenheim.
Fortuna Düsseldorf: Kastenmeier - M. Zimmermann, Klarer, Oberdorf, Gavory - Ao Tanaka, Sobottka - Narey, Appelkamp - Hennings, Bozenik
1. FC Nürnberg: Mathenia - Valentini, Schindler, Sörensen, Handwerker - Geis - Krauß, Möller Daehli, Tempelmann, Nürnberger - Schäffler
Saturday 22nd January - all kick-offs 13:30 local unless specified
SC Paderborn 07 vs Werder Bremen
SC Paderborn 07 eneded a six match slump in Nürnberg last weekend. With attacking signings of Florent Muslija and Philipp Klement, we should expect the Paderborn offense to improve after only 2 goals in the five matches before Nürnberg.
Werder Bremen are in blistering form, and they are starting to look unbeatable. As we've talked about their duel with Fortuna Düsseldorf earlier, I will just list some recent Werder Bremen statistics. With Ole Werner as coach, Werder Bremen have: Won every single league match, scored 14 goals in four matches, 70 shots total (about 18 per game). They have been extremely good.
On the head-to-head, it's equal. Paderborn and Werder Bremen have beaten each other twice before, with one draw. SCP07 are right there in the promotion fight in 8th place, and would actually go above their opponents with a win. Werder are 4th with 32 points.
SC Paderborn 07: Huth - Ma. Schuster, Hünemeier, Correia, Justvan - Schallenberg - Srbeny, Klement - Muslija - Platte, Michel
Werder Bremen: Pavlenka - Veljkovic, Toprak, Friedl - Agu, C. Groß, A. Jung - Bittencourt, Schmid - Füllkrug, Ducksch
FC Hansa Rostock vs FC Heidenheim
FC Hansa Rostock couldn't buy a goal in their last match, creating many chances and eventually conceding to Hannover's first attempt on goal. Haris Duljevic missed a few chances, one was an open-goal and the other was a nice save from a corner. The game was level at the break, but Hannover came out the better. They should've led the game after Maxi Beier missed a great chance, albeit he was off-balance slightly. A few minutes later, Hannover found the net. It was to be Linton Mainer who glided past multiple Hansa defenders, before curling the ball perfectly into the corner of the goal. From a seemingly difficult position, Hannover found themselves leading with only a quarter of the match to go. The game stayed like that. Despite 13 attempts with 5 on target, Hansa Rostock just could not find the net. They moved to a record of 5-5-9 on the season, and a record of 2-2-5 at home.
FC Heidenheim are finding form at the right time. After the 4-0 defeat in Nürnberg, Heidenheim have won 6 of their last 8 second division games. Their last match was a home victory, facing the bottom club in the second division. Heidenheim dominated the possession figures with 62% of the ball. Even though FCH had more of the ball, Ingolstadt had more shots. The home team led the match after 30 minutes with a Robert Leipertz goal. Ingolstadt responded straight after half-time, but Tobias Mohr scored the winning goal on 51 minutes.
Hansa are without a win in six 2nd league matches, and they are currently 15 in the table. FC Heidenheim are 3rd, and with the good form they have, you would expect Heidenheim to take all the points. The head-to-head is very equal, with Hansa Rostock winning with 4 victories, Heidenheim have 3.
FC Hansa Rostock: Kolke - Neidhart, Malone, Roßbach, Rizzuto - Fröde, Rhein - Duljevic, Ingelsson, K. Schumacher - Verhoek
FC Heidenheim: Ke. Müller - Busch, P. Mainka, Hüsing, Föhrenbach - Theuerkauf, Burnic - Leipertz, Schöppner, T. Mohr - Kleindienst
That concludes the more in-depth look at the teams recently, a feature that will come out every week for the 2. Bundesliga preview. I will look at the first four matches in more detail. The second half of the preview will consist of statistics from the official 2. Bundesliga website.
FC Ingolstadt 04 vs Darmstadt 98
Darmstadt have only won two of 13 competitive games against FCI (six draws, five wins by Ingolstadt). One of these two wins was the 6-1 win in the first leg, the league-wide record result of the season (the Lilies also won 6-1 in Sandhausen). For Darmstadt that 6-1 was also the birth of the new dream duo Phillip Tietz/Luca Pfeiffer (both scored twice in the first game).
Darmstadt's second victory also came in Bölle (2-0 in April 2016 in the Bundesliga with Sandro Wagner as goal scorer and assist) - so the Hessians have never won in Ingolstadt.
Tobias Kempe has not won any of his twelve second division games against Ingolstadt (nine draws, three defeats). In the first leg he was on the bench for 90 minutes.
FC Ingolstadt 04: Stojanovic - Neuberger, Röseler, Antonitsch, D. Franke - Keller, Sarpei - Gebauer, Gaus - Kutschke, Eckert Ayensa
Darmstadt 98: Schuhen - Bader, P. Pfeiffer, Isherwood, Holland - Gjasula - Skarke, Kempe, Marvin Mehlem - L. Pfeiffer, P. Tietz
Erzgebirge Aue vs Schalke 04 - 20:30 local
In the duel of the buddies (both play the Steigerlied as a pre-match song), Aue experiences his first competitive home game against Schalke and also plays for the first time on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. (S04 for the 7th time).
Schalke has already been a guest in Lößnitztal, in July 2018 S04 came to a friendly game with ex-Auer Domenico Tedesco for the opening ceremony of the renovated Erzgebirge stadium. Aue won 1-0 with a penalty from Robert Herrmann.
The first leg of the current season was the competitive premiere, Aue surprised Schalke again and scored a point in Gelsenkirchen. Dominick Drexler scored to make it 1-0, substitute Sascha Härtel equalized late – for both of them it was the only goal of the season so far.
Erzgebirge Aue: Männel - Cacutalua, Gonther, Carlson - Strauß, Fandrich, Zolinski - Jonjic, Hochscheidt - Kühn, Owusu
Schalke 04: Fraisl - Thiaw, Sané, Itakura - Ranftl, Palsson, Ouwejan - Zalazar, Latza - Terodde, Bülter
Sunday 23rd January - all kick-offs 13:30 local
Karlsruhe SC vs SV Sandhausen
**Important: Karlsruhe has a Coronavirus outbreak, and 16 players have tested positive for the virus. Therefore, KSC are applying for a postponement. The match will most likely be postponed, you can find the latest developments on the Karlsruhe Twitter page. **
In the first leg, Sandhausen won the first point against KSC after four defeats in a row against Karlsruhe.
The last victories against Karlsruhe came in the 2016/17 second division season: In April 2017, Sandhausen won 4-0 at home against KSC, in November 2016 they achieved their only away win in the wildlife park with a 3-1 win.
Daniel Gordon, who spent a year in Sandhausen in 2016/17 (26 second division appearances for SVS, one goal), has not lost any of his eight second division games against the Kurpfälzer (five wins, three draws). Marco Thiede even played four years for SVS (2013-17, 74 second division appearances, one goal).
Karlsruher SC: Gersbeck - Thiede, O’Shaughnessy, Kobald, Heise - Wanitzek, Breithaupt, Gondorf - Cueto, P. Hofmann, Schleusener
SV Sandhausen: Drewes - Ajdini, Dumic, Zhirov, Okoroji - Zenga, Ritzmaier - Seufert, Soukou - Testroet, Kutucu
Hannover 96 vs Dynamo Dresden
Hannover had won all of the previous three duels against Dynamo. In addition to five second division matches, there were also three games in the DFB Cup (H96 advanced twice, Dresden once).
H96 coach Christoph Dabrowski last met Dresden in December 2012, scoring a goal for Bochum in a 3-0 away win in Saxony - that was the last of his twelve second division goals.
Hannover 96: Zieler - Dehm, M. Franke, Börner, Hult - Ondoua, Diemers - Maina, Kerk, Teuchert - Beier
Dynamo Dresden: K. Broll - Becker, Ehlers, Akoto, C. Löwe - Y. Stark - Königsdörffer, Kade - Daferner - Drchal, Borrello
SSV Jahn Regensburg vs Holstein Kiel
Regensburg clearly won the first leg 3-0 (goals: Max Besuschkow, Benedikt Gimber and an own goal by Julian Korb). It was one of only two Jahn wins in the last 14 competitive games against the Storks (four draws, eight wins for Kiel).
At home, Regensburg have not won against Kiel for six competitive games (two draws, four defeats) and have yet to win a home game against the Storks in the 2nd Bundesliga (two draws, two defeats). The last home win against KSV was in November 2013 in the 3rd division (1-0).
Fin Bartels scored in both games against Jahn last season and was man of the match in the 3-2 away win in Regensburg (one goal scored, two goals assisted).
SSV Jahn Regensburg: A. Meyer - Saller, S. Breitkreuz, Kennedy, Guwara - Gimber, Besuschkow - Boukhalfa, Wekesser - D. Otto, Albers
Holstein Kiel: Dähne - Wahl, Thesker, Komenda - Sterner, Porath, Sander, Kirkeskov - Mühling - Bartels, Pichler
Expected line-ups courtesy of Kicker