Wehen Wiesbaden vs VfB Stuttgart: Die Roten looking to solidify top two position
STUTTGART, GERMANY - OCTOBER 04: Roberto Massimo of VfB Stuttgart and Michel Niemeyer of SV Wehen Wiesbaden battle for the ball during the Second Bundesliga match between VfB Stuttgart and SV Wehen Wiesbaden at Mercedes-Benz Arena on October 4, 2019 in Stuttgart, Germany. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)

The Brita-Arena in Wiesbaden plays host to a mismatch on Sunday as 15th placed Wehen Wiesbaden welcome high-flying VfB Stuttgart for matchday 26 of the 2. Bundesliga season.

Story behind the match

Wiesbaden went into the league suspension off the back of a comfortable 6-2 win away to Osnabruck, however, this was the only win in their last five games.

Rudiger Rehm's outfit currently occupy the relegation play-off position in the table but could fall into the drop zone with a defeat on Sunday afternoon.

In contrast, visitors Stuttgart won three of their last five games before play was halted in March, beating Erzgebirge Aue, Bochum and Jahn Regensburg.

Ahead of the weekend, they are one point above third-placed Hamburg and six adrift of league leaders Arminia Bielefeld.

Wiesbaden will take confidence from the two sides' meeting earlier in the campaign, when a Manuel Schaffler brace secured a 2-1 away victory.

Team news

German midfielder Patrick Schonfeld is the only absentee for the hosts as he misses out with appendicitis.

As for Stuttgart, Maxime Awoudja (achilles) and Borna Sosa (knee) are both sidelined, with the former picking up his injury in training last weekend.

Predicted Line-ups

Wiesbaden (5-4-1) Lindner - Kuhn, Mockenhaupt, Dams, Medic, Niemeyer - Aigner, Mrowca, Rivero, Dittgen - Schaffler

VfB Stuttgart (4-3-3) Kobel - Stenzel, Phillips, Badstuber, Castro - Mangala, Karazor, Didavi - Gonzalez, Gomez, Forster

Key clashes

Manuel Schaffler vs Nathaniel Phillips and Holger Badstuber

Despite their lowly league position, Wiesbaden's 31-year-old striker has bagged 15 goals in 24 appearances this season, second only to Bielefeld's Fabian Klos.

Thus, he could prove a thorn in the side of Stuttgart's centre backs, including the impressive Phillips, who is on loan from Liverpool.

Stefan Aigner vs Gonzalo Castro

Experienced winger Aigner will fancy his chances up against former Bayer Leverkusen man Castro.

Castro is predominantly a central midfielder but the 32-year-old has been deputising at left-back this season.

As a result, Aigner could find plenty of joy down the flank on Sunday.

What they have said

Rudiger Rehm, Wiesbaden manager: "We had a very good team situation the last weeks and months before the break. The boys are in top shape, we used the weeks and tried to make the best of the situation."

Pellegrino Matarazzo, VfB Stuttgart manager: “Wehen were on a good run before the enforced break. They had settled nicely into the second half of the season and on Sunday they’re likely to look to launch long balls forward and try to make the most of their skills on the break.”