Schalke 04 vs. VfL Bochum preview: Both teams need a win
By Ben Sully @SullyBen
Schalke will attempt to claim their first win of the season when they face a Bochum side who are also in need of three points after losing their opening five Bundesliga games.
Schalke have struggled in their return to the top-flight, with their opening five league game resulting in three draws and two defeats. As a result of their poor start to the season, Schalke currently occupy the relegation playoff place.
After being thrashed 6-1 by Union Berlin on matchday four, Schalke drew 1-1 with Stuttgart last weekend after Simon Terodde cancelled out Chris Führich's opener. Although they took a point from the contest, after playing the final 23 minutes with a one-man advantage they may have felt they spurned an opportunity to claim their first win of the Bundesliga season.
Schalke are now looking to avoid a six-game winless start to a Bundesliga season for the second time in the 21st century, but if they are to clinch three points on Saturday they will need to improve at both ends of the pitch.
While they have conceded at least two goals in three of their five league games, Schalke have found the net on more than one occasion in only one Bundesliga match this term.
Frank Kramer will hope that a home contest against a Bochum side without a point to their name presents the perfect opportunity to win his first game as Schalke boss.
Schalke are expected to be without the services of Marcin Kaminski, who is sidelined with a calf injury, while Thomas Ouwejan is a doubt for Saturday's contest.
After losing all five of their Bundesliga encounters this season, Bochum find themselves rooted to the foot of the league table.
Saturday's visitors have scored the fewest amount of goals of any side in the top-flight this season – finding the net on just three occasions – while they have failed to score in their last three matches.
They also have the worst defensive record in the Bundesliga. Including a 7-0 defeat to Bayern Munich on matchday four, Bochum have conceded 15 goals across their five league games.
Despite having a goal ruled out against Werder Bremen last weekend, Bochum looked set to collect their first point of the season. However, late strikes from Füllkrug in the 86th and 92nd minute condemned Thomas Reis' side to a fifth consecutive defeat.
Although Saturday's encounter will be the first competitive game between Schalke and Bochum since 2010, the visitors will be looking to end a run of five consecutive away defeats in Bundesliga meetings with Schalke.
Bochum are unable to call upon Jacek Goralski, Dominique Heintz, Konstantinos Stafylidis, and Paul Grave, who are all unavailable due to injury issues.