RB Leipzig vs. Schalke 04 preview: Can the Royal Blues survive?
By Jonathan Dicks @Jonathan_Dicks
Schalke are off to Leipzig in desperate need of a win to avoid relegation, as a draw won’t even be enough to escape the relegation playoff spot.
|Photo: FC Schalke 04|
Saturday will be Christopher Nkunku’s last home game at Leipzig, as the club are set to show off some brand new kits. Following last week's first-ever win at the Allianz Arena, they’ve already wrapped up 3rd place and don’t have much else to play for.
Except, they still need to get ready for the upcoming DFB-Pokal final against Frankfurt and Marco Rose isn’t expected to rest many of his stars. Now having won their last five competitive games, the Red Bull club are picking up steam at the perfect time to finish off another stellar campaign.
Rose said, "Schalke are the 8th-best side in the second half of the season and have taken on the relegation fight. They've really pulled together in recent months. It'll be a challenge, but that's the Bundesliga for you."
Peter Gulacsi is the only confirmed absentee.
Schalke sit alone on points in 17th place and a loss will confirm another shocking relegation for the storied club. It’s not a simple task against a talented Leipzig team, as supporters are hoping to avoid the worst:
A Schalke relegation combined with a Dortmund title win.
Depending on Bochum’s result against Leverkusen, a draw may not be enough to at least claim a relegation playoff spot. Thousands of fans will make the trip east for this game that means everything for Schalke's die-hard supporters.
In his presser, Thomas Reis mentioned, "We know we haven't played well away from home, but have done a lot of things better this year, so why can't we win this game? I wouldn't need to bother traveling to Leipzig if I didn't have any hope."
Ralf Fährmann and Tom Krauß could be squad options, but Soichiro Kozuki and Jere Uronen are out. Simon Terodde and Moritz Jenz can’t play due to yellow-card suspensions.
More about the match
Final 15.30 Kickoffs: Schalke relegated, Stuttgart headed for playoffs, Wolfsburg miss out on Europe