Stuttgart will look to continue their fine form when they welcome winless Darmstadt to the MHPArena on Friday.
After leading the club to safety last term, Sebastian Hoeneß has begun his first full season as Stuttgart boss with a positive run of results. They thrashed Balingen in the first round of the DFB-Pokal, before putting five goals past Bochum without reply to get their Bundesliga campaign up and running with an emphatic victory.
Stuttgart were quickly stopped in their tracks by a heavy 5-1 defeat to RB Leipzig, but they have responded to that result in impressive fashion. They produced a dominant display to thrash Freiburg 5-0, before they claimed a 3-1 away victory over Mainz last weekend courtesy of a Serhou Guirassy hat-trick.
The Guinea international is currently the leading scorer in the Bundesliga, and his eight goals have helped Stuttgart move into fourth position in the early stages of the season. Impressively, die Schwaben are the highest scorers in the Bundesliga after netting 14 goals in four matches.
The majority of those goals have been scored on home turf after winning both of their opening two home games by a 5-0 scoreline. As a result, they are the only side yet to concede a home goal this season, while they are one of three Bundesliga teams yet to drop points on home turf.
Nikolas Nartey and Josha Vagnoman are ruled with knee and foot problems respectively. Woo-yeong Jeong, meanwhile, is currently away on international duty with the South Korean Under-24 side at the Asian Games.
In contrast to their hosts, newly-promoted Darmstadt have experienced a disastrous start to the new season, having lost four and drawn one of their five competitive matches. After suffering a surprise first-round exit to fourth-tier Homburg in the first round of the cup, Darmstadt were edged out by Frankfurt in their Bundesliga opener.
Heavy defeats to Union Berlin and Bayer Leverkusen followed, leaving Darmstadt bottom of the table and without a point to their name after three matches. They looked set to enjoy a successful outing against fellow winless side last weekend when they stormed into a three-goal lead thanks to efforts from Marvin Mehlem, Matej Maglica and Tim Skarke. However, the game turned in the 49th minute when Maglica handled in the box and was harshly given his marching orders.
While Tomáš Čvančara may have missed the subsequent penalty, Gladbach still managed to stage a second-half comeback, as Jordan and Florian Neuhaus found the net to cut the deficit to one. Čvančara then made amends for his penalty miss, firing home an unstoppable long-range strike to ensure the spoils were shared.
After picking up their first point of the season, Darmstadt will look to claim their maiden win of the campaign. They will be aiming to replicate the 3-1 victory they recorded in their most recent competitive meeting with Stuttgart, which took place in the 2. Bundesliga in June 2020.
Maglica is suspended for Friday's contest, while Fabio Torsiello is ruled out with an injury issue. Darmstadt have doubts over the availability of several members of their squad, including Matthias Bader, Fraser Hornby, Braydon Manu, Oscar Vilhelmsson and Christoph Zimmermann.