1. FC Union Berlin travel west to the RheinEnergieSTADION hoping to put any relegation fears to bed. They face a 1. FC Koln team who can ensure their own Bundesliga survival with a victory and other results going their way.
Two desperate teams go head to head
Union haven’t won in the Bundesliga since 24th February. Whilst of course the break in play should be factored into that statistic, it is still seven matches without a victory. The 1-1 draw with FC Schalke 04 last time out may have instilled some more belief in Urs Fischer’s players, but they have looked devoid of creativity in recent weeks.
A win for Union would see them move level on points with their opponents, who are currently 12th. Whilst this run of form is disappointing for fans, simply avoiding the drop has to be viewed as a huge success for their first ever season in the top-flight of German football.
Poor Koln home form
They also haven’t won since the resumption of the Bundesliga, their last win coming away at bottom side Paderborn on 6th March. Earlier this season, the billy goats found themselves in serious contention for a Europa League spot, but now they find themselves aiming to secure their Bundesliga status with three games to spare.
There is clearly a mentality problem at Koln, having thrown away leads in three of their last five games. Manager Marco Gisdol may have to balance his squad carefully for the visit of Union, as his team face a trip to Bayer Leverkusen on midweek.
The likes of Mainz, Fortuna Dusseldorf and Werder Bremen will be looking to capitalise on any slip ups by Union during the run in, but a win here for the Berliners is likely to leave Fortuna and Werder Bremen too much to do.
It looks like Koln will be led by striker Jhon Cordoba, despite a recent knee injury. Gisdol’s squad is bolstered further by Sebastiaan Bornauw and Dominic Drexler, who both return from suspension.
The man who scored Union’s goal against Schalke last time out, Robert Andrich, will be suspended for this match after picking up his 10th yellow card of the campaign. There is also a chance that former Koln man Anthony Ujah will get the chance to face his old team as Fischer continues to rotate the squad looking for that winning formula.
When these sides last met it was Union Berlin who came out victorious, with top scorer Sebastian Andersson scoring twice to give Union a 2-0 win.
The match kicks off at 14:30 BST on Saturday 13th June.